Financial Aid
FAFSA
The FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) is required for any type of government assistance. Click on the link above to apply to the FAFSA online. The FAFSA asks many questions of parents, and requests many items from a family's tax forms. It is recommended that you fill out the FAFSA as soon after January 1 as possible to ensure that you are eligible for all possible aid.

Financial Aid Estimator
Curious about the amount of financial aid for which you might qualify? The above link gives a financial aid estimator. By entering information about parents' and student's income, size of family, and other factors, this website can give an estimate of financial aid eligibility.

Scholarships
 
Unlike government financial aid, many scholarships are not based on a family's financial situation. Look at the 'Scholarships' link to begin a scholarship search. While completing scholarship applications, consider the following recommendations: 

• Narrow your application list. Online scholarship searches often suggest hundreds of scholarship organizations. Some will be a perfect fit, but others will be scholarships for which you are not well-qualified. Scholarship applications can be time-consuming. Do not waste your time applying if you do not meet the criteria. 
• Know the deadlines. The first step in your application process should be organizing scholarships in order of due dates to keep yourself on track. 
• Make your message fit the organization. Scholarship organizations are often looking for a certain sort of student. Be yourself, but emphasize the things about you that fit with the organization’s mission. 
• Show, do not tell. Instead of stating that you are helpful, motivated, or responsible, give examples of how you have demonstrated the qualities you would like to emphasize. 
• Organize your thoughts. Use the writing process you learned in your English classes: brainstorm ideas, create an outline, write a rough draft, and edit your scholarship essays.