Vocational Education Financial Aid
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A vocational education can enable students to begin earning a respectable wage after only a year or two of school. Despite this, some students can't afford to attend a vocational or technical school – and many of them aren't aware that the same financial aid that's available for students pursuing a bachelor's degree is available to them as well. Learn more about financial aid available for those who enter vocational and technical schools and how to get it.
See ourcomprehensive guidefor an in-depth look at vocational schools and career colleges.
Scholarships aren't just for four-year degrees. Find vocational scholarships in your area of interest below.
- Allied Health
The American Association of Pharmacy Technicians offers a scholarship to students enrolled in aPharmacy Technician diplomaor associate degree program.
Offered by the Association of Schools of Allied Health Professions (ASAHP), this scholarship is available to students studying for a career in an allied health profession and enrolled in an ASAHP member school.
Sponsored by the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR), this scholarship is awarded to three students who attend an accredited nursing program.
The FHN healthcare system provides up to three scholarships for students who intend to enter a variety of healthcare careers, includingmedical assisting, pharmacy, nursing and ultrasound.
California's Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development (OSHPD) runs a special financial aid program that provides scholarships to California allied health students. In return, they must promise to work for at least 12 months at a qualified California healthcare facility.
Amount:Up to $8,000
Tylenol offers a total for 40 scholarships for any graduate or undergraduate student who is pursuing a career in medicine or health education.
Amount:$5,000 or $10,000
Three students receive this scholarship each year to help pay for any hairdressing school they decide to attend.
The ACF has several scholarships available each year to individual in an apprenticeship, certificate or college degreeprogram in the culinaryfield.
Amount:Up to $2,500
Deadline:April 30 or October 31
The James Beard Foundation has an array of culinary scholarships available to students who are enrolled in an accredited culinary program or are training for a career in the food industry.
Amount:Up to $20,000
Any student studying to obtain a legal-related degree, including a credential in paralegal studies, will be eligible for this scholarship.
In conjunction with Thomas Reuters, the National Federation of Paralegal Associations provides two scholarships for students seeking a paralegal education.
Amount:$2,000 – $3,000
Students majoring in accounting at a two or four-year college program are eligible for this National Society of Accountants scholarship.
Amount:$500 – $2,200
The law firm of Warner Norcross + Judd LLP provides a scholarship to a Michigan resident who is majoring in legal, secretarial or paralegal studies at an accredited school.
Amount:$1,000 – $2,000
Students at an accredited two or four-year school may apply to one of the many scholarships available for those majoring in welding or a related field.
Amount:$2,000 and up
Amount:Up to $2,200
Students interested in an automotive career are eligible for this scholarship to help pay for vocational, trade, bachelor's or master's level educational training.
Amount:$2,000 for second award and $3,000 for first award
This scholarship is available to students who wish to attend a trade school or four-year university to study in a field related to the construction industry. Special preference is given to those with a connection to the roofing industry.
Students interested in theskilled tradesand willing to demonstrate a strong work ethic are encouraged to apply for this scholarship.
The National Association of Women in Construction (NAWIC) offers this scholarship to full-time students enrolled in a construction-related program.
Amount:Between $500 and $2,500
The PHCC Foundation awards dozens of scholarships each year to individuals in HVAC or plumbing apprenticeship programs.
Students who are union members, retired union members or are the child or spouse of a union member may apply for this highly competitive scholarship to help pay for the cost of attending a trade, vocational, technical college or university.
Amount:$500 to $4,000
This scholarship is available to any student who attends an accredited information technology program and has already completed at least one semester of college education.
Administered by Great Minds in STEM, which promotes careers and degrees in STEM for the Hispanic community, this program offers a variety of scholarships for students attending a two or four-year school. They must be pursuing a degree in STEM, be of Hispanic heritage, or have made contributions to the Hispanic community.
Students who have overcome significant challenges and who intend to pursue a technical degree (taking up totwo yearsfor completion) may apply for this scholarship.
Amount:Up to $2,500
Available to high school seniors with at least a 3.0 GPA who will pursue a STEM field of study (or closely related) in college, including computer science, information science and computational science.
Amount:Up to $2,500
Scholarship Application Steps
Grants & Special Programs
Financial aid begins with theFAFSA,或免费申请联邦学生援助。这份申请表要求提供大多数学校、州和联邦政府用来确定学生获得经济援助的资格以及他们能获得多少援助的信息。许多学生犯了忽视FAFSA的错误，因为他们认为自己没有资格获得任何东西;然而，即使他们认为自己没有资格，他们也应该填写这份表格。这是因为许多奖学金组织会将FAFSA作为申请过程的一项要求。
Prospective college students may complete the FAFSA starting October 1st. They can do so online, by telephone or with a paper application. Deadlines for completing the FAFSA will vary, depending on who requires it. However, students should complete it as quickly as possible as many opportunities for financial aid are available on a first-come, first-served basis. They should also check with their school to see if there are any further deadlines or requirements for financial aid.
State & Federal Government
Just because a student decides to attend a trade orvocational school, that doesn't mean they aren't eligible for federal financial aid. Many of the best forms of financial aid (those that don't have to be paid back) are available to vocational students. Here are a few.
These need-based grants typically go to undergraduate students who do not already have a bachelor's or professional degree. The size of the Pell Grant depends on the student's financial need, cost of schooling and level of academic study, with a maximum amount of roughly $6,000 (it goes up a bit each year).
Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grant
A student who is the child of a parent or guardian who died as a member of the US armed forces during post 9/11 military service in Iraq or Afghanistan may be eligible for this grant. Students must be less than 24 years of age or enrolled in college at the time of a parent or guardian's death.
每个州都有自己的一套课程，所以感兴趣的学生应该向他们所在州的部门或机构了解有哪些课程。A good place to find each state's respective agency is to visit the US Department of Education'sState Contactspage.
Here are a few example states and what grants and scholarship programs they have to offer:
California'sStudents Aid Commissionadministers state-based financial aid programs, including financial aid that does not need to be paid back. These include the Cal Grant, the California Chafee Grant for Foster Youth, the California National Guard Education Assistance Award Program and the Law Enforcement Personnel Dependents Grant Program.
ThePennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency,简称PHEAA，提供各种学生不需要偿还的经济援助。例如，它有自己的宾夕法尼亚工作学习计划，以及宾夕法尼亚州立助学金计划、宾夕法尼亚定向工业计划、高等教育酬金计划、适宜卫生技术计划和宾夕法尼亚国民警卫队教育援助计划。
Department of Education Office of Career, Technical & Adult Education
Perkins Tech Prep Grants
Federal funding is provided to states to improve the technical knowledge and skills of students. The goal of the program is to help students obtain an associate degree or post-secondary certificate in a high-skill field.
Perkins State Basic Grants
Federal TRIO Programs
TRIO is designed to help disadvantaged students, such as those who are low-income and first-generation college students. Funding goes directly to school and employment agencies who serve a significant number of disadvantaged individuals.
Minority Science and Engineering Improvement Programs
Schools who serve predominantly minority student populations receive federal funding to help minority students begin a career in science or engineering.
Federal financial aid makes up a large portion of the college aid awards given each academic year. But many schools, through state funding, private donations or their endowment, will offer their own financial aid programs. Many of these offerings come in the form of scholarships or grants that do not need to be repaid by the student.
Students must go to the school's financial aid office to discover what's available and what the eligibility requirements are. Most of these will be offered to students who demonstrate financial need, academic success and/or decide to study a particular academic field. Some examples of these scholarships include:
West Kentucky Community and Technical College Community Scholarship Program
In a partnership with the Rotary Club of Paducah, WKCTC provides gap funding scholarships to students who come from Paducah or McCracken County high schools and meet certain academic requirements.
Western Technical College Foundation
Students at Western Technical College in Wisconsin may apply for one of the 300+ scholarships available through the Western Technical College Foundation. These scholarships range between $150 and $2,000 and are only available to current or recently admitted students.
Lieutenant Kelly Kincaid Emergency Services Scholarship
Students of Western Piedmont Community College in North Carolina who are also first responders, or have parents or spouses who are first responders, may apply for this $1,000 scholarship.
* GI Bill®是美国退伍军人事务部(VA)的注册商标。More information about education benefits offered by VA is available at the official U.S. government website at http://www.benefits.va.gov/gibillForever GI Bill® Guide
The Direct Loan Program consists of three types of loans: the Direct Loans (these can be subsidized or unsubsidized and are also known as Stafford Loans), Direct PLUS Loans and Direct Consolidation Loans.
Direct Loans are available to undergraduate students. Students who demonstrate financial need are eligible for a subsidized Direct Loan, where the student does not typically need to pay interest until six months after graduation. Unsubsidized Direct Loans require students to pay interest at all times; although interest can be deferred, it does continue to accrue while a student is in school.
直接PLUS贷款通常只提供给研究生或专业学校的学生，或在研究生或专业学校的学生的父母;therefore, vocational or technical school students likely will not qualify for this.
Direct Consolidation Loans allow students to combine eligible federal loans into a single loan through a loan servicer. Any student with federal loans is likely eligible for this.
Under the Perkins Loan Program, only students who demonstrate exceptional financial need are eligible. These loans are available to both graduate and undergraduate students. The school serves as the lender for the students. The advantage of the Perkins Loan Program is the low interest rate.
Meet the Expert
Charlie Javice is the founder and CEO of Frank Financial Aid, a startup determined to help students figure out how they can afford to go to college.
From the Expert
Why do so many students think it's not possible to get the funds they need at vocational or technical schools?
The vocational / technical schools that don't benefit from federal and state funding leave students begging for scholarships that are few and far between. Credit card or student loan debt are the most likely options here. Most students will work to keep lower balances low.
How can students find special grants, programs, etc. that are specifically designed for students in vocational or technical school?
How common is financial aid offered directly from the school? What do students need to do to be sure they are considered?
Anything else students need to know about financial aid for vocational or technical school?
- Big Future
Run by the College Board, Big Future offers a wealth of information for prospective college students, including how to pay for college and an explanation of the financial aid process.
- CareerOneStop – Scholarship Finder
该网站由美国劳工部(US Department of Labor)运营，面向那些寻求进入某一特定职业的信息的人。这个网站也有一个广泛的可搜索的奖学金数据库。
- College Navigator
Run by the National Center for Education Statistics, this website helps students find the right school for them. There are also special tools for determining a school's affordability.
- Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) – Paying for College
The CFPB provides information to help students understand how student loans work, as well as choosing the best financial aid option for college.
- Federal Student Aid
The Federal Student Aid website is the go-to online location for learning about all the federal financial aid programs available. This website also has information about the FAFSA, preparing for college and how to repay student loans.
- Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)
In addition to allowing students to complete and submit their FAFSA online, the FAFSA website also contains helpful information concerning deadlines and financial aid advice.
- National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (NASFAA)
The NASFAA is a professional organization for financial aid professionals. It has an excellent section explaining the financial aid process and options and for students and parents.
Serves as the primary access and information hub for all things relating to federal student loans.
- United States Department of Education – Accreditation
Almost all forms of financial aid require a student to attend an accredited post-secondary institution. The US Department of Education's website explains accreditation, including how to find out if a school is accredited.
- USNWR – An Ultimate Guide to Understanding Financial Aid for College
US News and World Report provides a detailed overview of paying for college with the help of financial aid.
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