Financial Aid Resources 2013-2014
For more information about scholarships or assistance completing the FAFSA and other forms, contact Sammy Redd at New College Institute by email (preferable) firstname.lastname@example.org, or phone (276) 403-5610.
Federal, State, and College Financial Aid
Students must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) by the college's priority deadline, typically in mid-February to early March, to qualify for all sources of state and college funding. Students can apply after the priority deadline with the understanding that some sources of aid will no longer be available. The FAFSA is available online at www.fafsa.gov. FAFSA priority deadlines for all Virginia colleges and universities can be found at www.tinyurl.com/prioritydeadlines .
For complete information about federal student aid programs, visit www.studentaid.ed.gov . Information about state aid can be found at www.tinyurl.com/virginiafinaid . Check with your college's financial aid office for information about scholarship funds available for current and prospective students.
Local and Regional Scholarship Programs
High school counseling offices are the primary source of scholarship information for graduating seniors. Deadlines for most local scholarships are in March/April, so students should monitor scholarship files in the counseling office beginning in January of their senior year. Counselors often use school websites to provide scholarship information updates.
In addition to the wide variety of local scholarship programs, there are substantial funds available from regional charitable foundations. Major funders include:
Tobacco Regional Scholarship Program - http://tobacco.swcenter.edu
Provides students with grants of up to $100 per credit hour to be applied toward undergraduate tuition and fees at a 4-year college or university. There are no income requirements to participate in the program. Funds are disbursed according to criteria available on the program's website. The program begins accepting applications after the first of the year. Monitor the website for dates. NOTE: This program is now a scholarship program; it is no longer a loan forgiveness program. Contact Paul Farrar, Program Coordinator, at (434) 572-5484 for more information.
JT-Minnie Maude Charitable Trust - www.jtmm.org
Awards scholarship funds to traditional age and non-traditional students pursuing certificates, bachelor's or master's degrees. Individuals living in the following areas are eligible: Henry County, Martinsville City, Danville City, Pittsylvania County, Halifax County, Rockingham County, NC, and Caswell County, NC. The application deadline for traditional age students is April 9. Application deadlines for non-traditional students are February 1, June 1, and October 1.
Martinsville Area Community Foundation - www.martinsvilleareacommunityfoundation.org
Awards scholarship funds to traditional age and non-traditional students pursuing bachelor's and master's degrees. Students complete one application to qualify for a variety of local scholarships. Application deadline is April 1.
Hughes Memorial Foundation - www.hughesmemorialfoundation.org
Provides scholarships for needy and/or at-risk traditional age students living in Southern Virginia and border counties in North Carolina. Funding is available for undergraduate students only.
Community College Scholarship Programs
Scholarship funding is available through the foundations of each of the regional community colleges. Visit the scholarship websites of your community college for details and applications.
Patrick Henry Community College - www.tinyurl.com/phccscholarships
Danville Community College -www.tinyurl.com/dccscholarships
New College Foundation Scholarships
New College Foundation administers several scholarship programs for eligible students pursuing bachelor's and master's degrees at New College Institute. Applications will be posted on the New College Institute website (www.newcollegeinstitute.org) in Spring 2013.
Tuition Tax Credits
Undergraduate and graduate students are eligible for federal income tax credits of up to $2500 for qualified educational expenses. Qualified expenses include tuition, fees, and books paid out-of-pocket or through student loans.
Students should receive Form 1089-T in the mail (or online) from the college and should claim the credit on their tax returns. For more information, visit www.tinyurl.com/edtaxcredits .
Books and Websites
Highly motivated students are encouraged to visit the following websites for information about national scholarship programs. Keep in mind that these programs are typically very competitive.
FASTWEB - www.fastweb.com
COLLEGE BOARD - www.bigfuture.org
These books are great resources for students as they look for and apply for scholarships:
THE ULTIMATE SCHOLARSHIP BOOK 2013 - Gen and Kelly Tanabe
HOW TO GO TO COLLEGE (ALMOST) FOR FREE - Ben Kaplan
PAYING FOR COLLEGE WITHOUT GOING BROKE - The Princeton Review
Student loans are often part of a comprehensive financial aid package. While loans can be a "necessary evil", it is critically important that students and families understand the burden that excessive student debt can bring. Students should borrow only the absolute minimum necessary to finance a college education and remember that student loans are real money that accrues interest and must be paid back.
For more information about federal student loan programs, visit www.studentloans.gov.
NOTE: The federal government is the primary and best source of student loans. Students should be very wary of loan programs offered by banks, credit card companies, and other non-federal sources. Typically, federal Stafford Direct Loans provide the best interest rates and more flexible repayment terms.