September 26, 2009

Do You Have Questions About Financial Aid?

Most people get confused and frustrated when filing out the financial aid FAFSA application. You are not alone, we all eventally get there too. You have options before completing your FAFSA application. You can either talk to your Financial Aid Advisor at your college or go to this website for more questions:

FAFSA Online

Ask your questions here

September 25, 2009

Student's Guide to Debt Relief

The original title is "The Poor Student's Guide to Debt Relief." This guide is distributed by, an Edvisors Company. You don't necessarily need to be poor to be in debt. This is an excellent guide for all college students or future college students. I found this short guide very useful and I would like to share this with you:

Virtually every college student these days carries some debt, from student loans to student credit cards to library fines and more. Recent studies quote some outlandish numbers - the average graduating college student carries $4,138 in credit card debt and $22,500 in student loans. Managing that much debt successfully right out of college can be incredibly difficult and stressful. Read More

September 19, 2009

Free Scholarship Listing for College Students

This 200 Free Scholarship List is created by Black Excel, and it is their lastest. They have featured over 1,000+ scholarships on their website. Remember that most groups provide scholarships on an annual basis, so don't stress yourself over any one particular deadline. Students are advised to target "good" scholarship sources...and apply every year!

200 Free Scholarships For Minorities

September 13, 2009

Should My Child go to Public or Private College?

The dilemma continues to ponder most parents today. Should I send my child to public or private college? The rush to public and community colleges comes at a tough time. Some public schools are making even deeper budget cuts than private schools. At some universities, plans are in place to cut back their academic programs, close campuses, and to eliminate a merit scholarship program. And some states are capping student enrollments. As for enrolling in specific programs such as nursing, most likely you will be put on a wait list for who knows how long.

At these times, it is beneficial to finish school faster to get the primary job quicker. Yes, you will have to pay back student loans, but you will also be working in the field a lot sooner than the college student whose enrolled at a community college. By the time that student finishes state or community college, you will have your student loan already paid off or half way paid off because you took the high road and they took the slow road. Needless to say, whichever route you take may not be the wrong one, but the one most beneficial in your current life situation.

September 11, 2009

Avoiding Scholarship Scams

Before we dive into search techniques, it’s super important to cover this important topic. There is no shortage of con artists and scams when it comes to paying for college, and spotting them early can save you money and heartbreak.

Here’s the golden rule of scholarships:

Money flows to the student, never the other way around.

Any scholarship, grant, foundation, or organization that’s legitimate won’t ask you for a penny out of your pocket.

Scholarship scams also exist in the form of identity theft - taking valuable information such as date of birth and social security numbers and selling them outright to identity theft groups around the world.

Any one of these signs should be a red flag that you may be dealing with a scholarship scam:

Asking for money. Reputable scholarships are free to apply for and free to receive. Scams typically charge for the application, or use deceptive language such as reserve your scholarship with your credit card number”.

Reputable scholarships never need to charge money!

Asking for lots of non-relevant personal information. Scams that pay off for criminals using identity theft ask for lots of personal information typically not relevant to a scholarship application such as bank account numbers, Social Security numbers, and other financially-related information.

Claims of exclusivity. A fair number of scams make the claim that their information cannot be found anywhere else, and therefore you should pay for their services. In the age of Google, information exclusivity is a thing of the past. Don’t pay.

Claims of guarantees. The truth of scholarship hunting is that there are no guarantees.

No one can guarantee that you will be awarded a scholarship, and any company advertising a paid service making such a claim is likely a scam.

Receiving letters of potential awards you never applied for. Scholarships are in such demand that no awarding agency needs to make unsolicited awards to recipients. This includes, by the way, email notifications of any kind about scholarships that you never applied for.

“Free” seminars with an upsell. The latest trick that some companies and individuals are using is the free financial aid seminar offer. These seminars typically promise great financial aid information, but end with a hard sales pitch to attend a future paid seminar, buy books, DVDs, or other materials (usually at high prices). There are plenty of free financial aid seminars offered by high schools and colleges that are worth attending instead. Check with your guidance office or financial aid office for details on those.

The most important thing you can do when it comes to scholarship scams is to trust your instincts. If something feels, sounds, or seems fishy, it probably is. With the Internet and other freely available resources, there is no shortage of legitimate scholarships to apply for.

Remember again the golden rule of scholarships:

Money flows to the student, never the other way around.

Beware any scholarship claim to the contrary.

To read more on scholarship tips go to:

This guide is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No
Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.
Source: Christopher Penn and the Student Loan Network