A Pell Grant is a form of financial aid the U.S. government provides to help students pay for college. The grant is available to undergraduate students who demonstrate financial need, and the funds can be used for tuition, fees, books, supplies, room and board, and other educational expenses. The grant does not need to be paid back and is awarded based on financial need and the cost of attendance.
This article explores Pell Grants and how they can help students further their education.
Who is Eligible for Pell Grants?
To be eligible for Pell Grants, students must meet certain criteria, including:
- they must be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen, have a valid Social Security number, and not be incarcerated
- students must be enrolled in an eligible postsecondary institution and be pursuing a degree or certificate
- they must demonstrate financial need. This is determined by the U.S. Department of Education using a formula that considers the student’s expected family contribution, the cost of attendance and other factors
- students must also be making satisfactory academic progress in their program of study
- eligible students must apply for the Pell Grant by filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The FAFSA must be completed each year to receive a Pell Grant. It is important to note that the amount of the Pell Grant is determined by the Department of Education and may vary from year to year.
What Does a Pell Grant Cover?
A Pell Grant can be used to cover a variety of educational expenses, including tuition, fees, living expenses, books, supplies, and transportation. Depending on the school and the student’s individual circumstances, the grant may be used to cover all of these expenses or just some of them. In addition, the grant may cover certain educational expenses that are not directly related to attending school, such as child care and travel expenses. In some cases, the grant may even be used to pay for room and board. Depending on the school and the student’s individual circumstances, the Pell Grant may also be used to purchase a computer or other technology needed to attend school.
How Much Money Can I Get From A Pell Grant?
The amount of money students can receive from a Pell Grant depends on several factors, including the cost of attendance, the student’s enrollment status, and the student’s Expected Family Contribution (EFC). The maximum Pell Grant award for the 2020-2021 academic year is $6,345.
Maximum Award Amounts
The maximum Pell Grant award is subject to change from year to year. The maximum award amount for the 2020-2021 academic year is $6,345. However, the actual amount a student receives may be less than this amount, depending on the student’s financial need and the cost of attendance.
Additional Financial Assistance for Low-Income Students
In addition to Pell Grants, other forms of financial assistance are available to students from low-income families. These include Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants (FSEOG), Federal Work-Study (FWS), and other financial aid forms.
Covering Your Educational Expenses With Pell Grants
Pell Grants are an important source of financial aid for undergraduate students and can be used to cover tuition, fees, books, supplies, room and board, and other educational expenses. Eligibility for Pell Grants is based on financial need and the cost of attendance, and the maximum award amount for the 2020-2021 academic year is $6,345. Additionally, other forms of financial assistance are available to students from low-income families.
There are also numerous loans available for students. You can learn more about the college scholarships and grants for veterans in our Gov Relations Resource.