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Scholarships, Grants, and Loans Differences

There are a variety of financial aid options you can apply for to help you with your college expenses. The chart below briefly outlines the differences between scholarships, grants and loans, and what might be the best option for you. For more information, select the category title of the type of aid you’d like to learn more about.

Varies(1): Some scholarship programs offer awards based only on academic merit, talent, community service, etc. Other scholarship programs may have the described attributes but also a need-based component as determined by the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

Varies(2): Most federal student loan programs require a FAFSA application with the exception of the Parent PLUS loan application. There are many private nonfederal alternative loan programs available nationwide with no FAFSA requirement.

Varies(3): Students may seek out as many non-UNLV scholarships as they are able to obtain. Any UNLV scholarships would be limited to a student’s financial aid cost of attendance less any other forms of financial aid received.

Varies(4): Scholarship programs are available to a broad base of applicants. Federal/state grants or loans tend to be funded with U.S. citizenship requirements, with the exception of the Millennium Scholarship program. There are some private nonfederal alternative loan programs available nationwide where a noncitizen can receive a loan with a credit-worthy U.S. citizen or permanent resident co-signer.

 

Source: http://www.unlv.edu/finaid/checklist/before-differences

Difference between Scholarship and Grant

Difference between Scholarship and Grant

While both scholarships and grants allow students to pay for their tuition without having to pay the money back, there are a number of key differences between the two. Knowing the difference between grants and scholarship will make it much easier for students to fund their education. To best define the differences, I want to define both grants and scholarships separately.

A grant is money that is given by a non-profit organization that will generally be tax exempt. One of the best examples of this organization is the government. However, corporations or foundations may also provide grants to students as well. Grants will generally be given for a project, and the student will be expected to report information about the project to the donor.

Grants vary widely in their requirements, amounts, and expectations. It has been estimated that there are billions of dollars available in grant money, and they rival scholarships in terms of their cost. The first step in getting a grant is for a student to send a proposal to the donor. The proposal may be based on a project the applicant is interested in, or it may be a response to a request that is made by the funder. Grants can be given under a variety of different circumstances. Some grants may be given to people who are victims of natural disasters, and there are a large number of grants available for entrepreneurs and small business people.

The government will frequently give out grants as a result of fiscal imbalances. These imbalances will generally occur between taxation and spending, and the government will simply give away the money as grants to create balance. The government will also provide grants to students who are attending colleges and universities. Like grants, scholarships are money that is given by governments and foundations. A scholarship is a form of financial aid that is specifically geared towards students who are attending college. It is used as a way of financing their education, and it may pay a part of their education, or it may pay the entire cost of a student’s tuition.

Scholarships will require students to meet certain requirements, both before and after they’ve obtained it. Most of these scholarships will require students to have a minimum GPA, and they may also require them to take a certain number of credit hours within the first 12 months of their schooling. While some scholarships are based on gender, others are based on the field the student is majoring in. The key difference between scholarships and grants is that scholarships tend to have more rigid requirements for selection, and they are specifically geared towards those who are entering college.

A grant, on the other hand, may be given to someone who is not necessarily going into college. They could be someone who is starting a business, or it could be someone who has suffered some type of tragedy. Scholarships are closely connected to education, but grants may not be. Also, once a person is awarded a grant, they will generally not be required to maintain certain requirements. After they passed the application process, the money is essentially theirs. However, the student must complete the proposal that is related to the project for the grant. It should be emphasized that there are a lot of similarities between grants and scholarships.

They are both “free money” in the sense that you are not expected to pay them back. Student loans require students to pay the money back, and it could be said that grants and scholarships are more closely related. My best advice to people who wish to attend college is to use both grants and scholarships, and use student loans only as a last resort.

If you can successfully get enough scholarships and grants, you should be able to fund the cost of your education without having to borrow a great deal of money. If you don’t plan on attending college, or you find that you don’t meet the requirements for most scholarships, you will want to look at grants as an alternative.

If you are interested in earning your degree, you will want to place a higher emphasis on scholarships. No matter which option you choose, you will be required to do a great deal of work and research. Neither option will be easy to achieve, but the rewards make it worthwhile.

Source: http://www.exforsys.com/career-center/scholarships/difference-between-scholarship-and-grant.html

Making Student Loan Programs More Affordable and Efficient.

A college degree is practically a necessity these days, not only for the individual student, but for the economic and social health of the country. But as states cut budgets, and grant aid has diminished, students are relying on loans to pay for college.Affordable Student loan Program

It has not always been this way. Twelve years ago only one-third of college graduates from four year public colleges needed to borrow money to attain a college degree and graduates who borrowed carried around $12,000 of debt on average. Today more than two-thirds of graduates have federal student loan debt and carry over $23,000 on average. The percentage of students with $25,000 worth of private student loan debt has increased, from 5% in 1996 to 24% in 2008.

Relying on student loans to pay for college can have negative consequences. Too much loan debt causes qualified students to opt out of college completely; it causes current students to work too much and study less, and it causes borrowers who’ve graduated to opt out of socially valuable careers, and to delay life milestones like buying a home or getting married.

More and more students are moving beyond financial aid to finance their degrees with private student loans.  Private loans are much riskier, bringing applicants in with low advertised interest rates but spitting them out with higher interest rates and record debt levels.

A college degree must remain within reach for families of modest means, and affordable over the long term for the borrowers and parents in repayment. We work to increase student grant aid, make debt levels more manageable, and protect students as consumers from practices that contribute to educational debt.

We need robust grant programs on a state and federal level, a simpler system of student aid that actively encourages student and parental participation, and stronger safeguards for student borrowers in repayment.

Also, we can lower student debt by protecting student consumers. College students pay unjustifiably high amounts for college textbooks each year. And those who rely on credit and debit cards to help offset day to day costs of education, or to access their financial aid disbursements, can get slapped with penalty fees and terms that take advantage of them.

 

Source: http://www.studentpirgs.org/campaigns/sp/affordable-higher-education

ARE YOU SAVING ENOUGH FOR THE FUTURE?

Saving is no longer as simple as keeping all your coinage in a jar on the mantelpiece or storing cash in the mattress. The world has become a technologically and economically complex place. Whilst the earliest forms of insurance, relating to business risk and retirement, date as far back as the Chinese in the 3rd century BCE, the methods of payment and options available were limited. A once off payment was all that was needed and you could get up to double your money back.
Digital technology and our diverse economic systems and policies have increased our options both for investment and for risk protection. This is an arena that is constantly changing, growing rapidly and needs to be monitored regularly – which is one reason for having your own financial planner!
Regardless of how your portfolio looks, there are some standard principles to employ when saving for the future:

Step 1. Having a budget

The first step in saving money is to ensure that you know where you are spending your money. Draft a budget. This can be a simple document that shows your inflows on the one side and all your outflows on the other side. Now your goal is to reduce your debt payments, by paying off your most expensive (highest interest rate) debt first. Budgeting is crucial to creating a sustainable investment plan and to ensure that you are saving enough for the future. If you need help with this, go to my contact page and let’s hook up!

Step 2. Choosing your investment options

Now that you have some disposable income and less debt, you need to investigate all the options that are available. Meeting with me will help you find the products that are best suited to your needs. These products vary in length, access to funds, return on your investment and the fees that are involved. If your your saving goal is less than 12 months, then look to your bank and make use of their products. The longer you want to invest for opens up opportunities to make use of Exchange Traded Funds, Unit Trusts as well as Property, Endowments and Retirement Annuities.

Step 3. Protect yourself.

I know! It’s strange to mention insurance in an article about savings but it is really important. If you are not able to earn your income, you are unable to maintain your saving goals and the investments that you have put in place. It’s a good idea to speak to me review your entire portfolio every year, to ensure that you are getting the best cover for your money.
And that’s it in a nutshell! Remember, the more we talk, the higher your chance of making wise choices around the future of your earnings to provide for yourself and your family!
source: http://www.richideas.co.za/p/saving-is-no-longer-as-simple-as.html

Americans have limited options when it comes to saving money

Broke and barely paying their bills, most Americans have to ignore pleas to save more. No wonder the US savings rate has plunged to historic lows, experts say.

Only about one-third of Americans are living within their means and with their long-term financial future assured, according to Stephen Brobeck, executive director of the Consumer Federation of America (CFA).

financial calculationsThe savings crisis cuts across a wide swath of income groups and households — young, middle-aged and seniors. And last week a new CFA survey revealed that the majority are struggling to save.

“I can’t even consider saving,” Shelly Selin, an 80-year-old retiree who lives on Manhattan’s Upper East Side, told The Post. The former HR executive and his wife, who pay a $2,500 monthly mortgage, finance their retirement mostly from investments, annuities and Social Security. That’s before living expenses, including food and electricity, are factored in.

As a volunteer tax preparer with an active social life, Selin is alarmed at talk of saving. “Bank interest rates are at less than 1 percent, and I’ve heard stories of people saying, ‘I thought I had enough money in CDs, and now I don’t.’ They forget these CDs don’t pay any interest.”

These struggling savers are not alone. The United Way of Northern New Jersey charity has coined a new term, ALICE, for the vast population of low- and moderate-income households that are now sometimes a paycheck away from financial disaster.

For ALICE (Asset-Limited, Income-Constrained, Employed consumers), saving is often the last thing on their minds.

“They are barely getting by,” said Laura Bruno of the United Way of Northern New Jersey. “They are not able to put any more aside for savings, so if they have one emergency — [for example, if] the car breaks down — they can find themselves in real trouble.”

Despite today’s bank come-ons for new savers — $200 cash bonuses are one recent incentive — hard-core savers are scarce.

As shoppers rushed to the mall this past Christmas, the savings rate (the percentage of disposable income households are putting aside) declined to an 11-month low of 3.9 percent.

Analysts are not surprised. “The American government strongly believes that people should spend as much money as they get,” said bank analyst Dick Bove of Rafferty Capital Markets.

Source : http://nypost.com/2014/03/01/americans-have-limited-options-when-it-comes-to-saving-money/

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