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Higher Education in Maryland

Federal Pell Grant

WHO MAY APPLY

The Pell Grant is awarded to eligible undergraduate students who have not earned a bachelor's or a professional degree. In some cases, you may receive a Pell Grant if you’re enrolled in a postbaccalaureate teacher certificate program. Awards are based solely on financial need, which is determined by your institution’s cost of attendance, your EFC, and your enrollment status (full-time or part-time).

HOW TO APPLY

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is the key application form in federal student aid. You may either file an electronic or a paper FAFSA. Apply online at www.fafsa.ed.gov.

WHEN TO APPLY

You should apply by filing your FAFSA as soon as possible after January 1 in order to meet the State of Maryland’s deadline of March 1 (If you are eligible for a Pell Grant, you will automatically be considered for Maryland’s Howard P. Rawlings Educational Assistance Grant).

ELIGIBLE MAJORS

All majors are eligible.

Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)

WHO MAY APPLY


The FSEOG is awarded to undergraduate students that have exceptional financial need, which is determined by those with the lowest EFC. Not all institutions participate in the FSEOG program, so you will need to contact your financial aid office for information. Full-time and part-time students may apply, however, your grant may be reduced if you are a part-time student.

HOW TO APPLY

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is the key application form in federal student aid. You may either file an electronic or a paper FAFSA. Apply online at www.fafsa.ed.gov.

Also, please contact the financial aid office at the institution you plan on attending to see if they participate in the FSEOG program.  The institutions decide how to disburse the funds they receive from the U.S. Department of Education and will be able to explain their awarding methodology.

WHEN TO APPLY

You should apply by filing your FAFSA as soon as possible after January 1.  Each school that participates receives a limited amount of funds from the U.S. Department of Education.  Schools may not have enough funds to award every applicant who qualifies for FSEOG.

ELIGIBLE MAJORS

All majors are eligible.

Academic Competitiveness Grant

WHO MAY APPLY

The Academic Competitiveness Grant (ACG) is awarded to first and second year, full-time undergraduate students who are U.S.citizens and eligible for the Pell Grant. Students must have completed a rigorous high school program. Second year students mustmaintain a 3.0 Grade Point Average (GPA).

HOW TO APPLY

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is the key application form in federal student aid. You may either file an electronic or a paper FAFSA. Apply online at www.fafsa.ed.gov.

WHEN TO APPLY

(See Pell Grant)

ELIGIBLE MAJORS

(See Pell Grant)

National Science and Mathematics Access to Retain Talent
(SMART) Grant

WHO MAY APPLY

Science and Mathematics Access to Retain Talent Grant (SMART) Grant is awarded to third and fourth year, full-time undergraduate students who are U.S. citizens and eligible for the Pell Grant.  Students must have completed a rigorous high school program.  Students must maintain a 3.0 Grade Point Average (GPA).  Students may be eligible to receive a SMART Grant for their fifth year of college if their program requires a fifth year of study.

HOW TO APPLY

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is the key application form in federal student aid. You may either file an electronic or a paper FAFSA. Apply online at www.fafsa.ed.gov.

WHEN TO APPLY

(See Pell Grant)

ELIGIBLE MAJORS

(See www.studentaid.ed.gov for a list of eligible majors)

Federal Work-Study

WHO MAY APPLY

Federal Work-Study provides part-time jobs in community service work and work related to your course of study. You must demonstrate financial need. Not all institutions participate in the Federal Work-Study program, so you will need to contact your financial aid office for more information. Funds are available to undergraduate and graduate students. You may be a full-time or part-time student.

HOW TO APPLY

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is the key application form in federal student aid. You may either file an electronic or a paper FAFSA. Apply online at www.fafsa.ed.gov.

Contact the financial aid office at the institution you plan on attending to see if they participate in the Work-Study program. The institutions decide how to disburse the funds they receive from the U.S. Department of Education and will be able to explain their awarding methodology.

WHEN TO APPLY

You should apply by filing your FAFSA as soon as possible after January 1. Each school that participates receives a limited amount of funds from the U.S. Department of Education. Schools may not have enough funds to award every applicant who qualifies for Work-Study.

ELIGIBLE MAJORS

All majors are eligible

Federal Perkins Loan

WHO MAY APPLY

The Federal Perkins Loan is for undergraduate, graduate, and professional students who are full-time or part-time. Perkins Loans are offered through participating schools to students who have the greatest financial need.

HOW TO APPLY

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is the key application form in federal student aid. You may either file an electronic or a paper FAFSA. Apply online at www.fafsa.ed.gov.

The Federal Perkins Loan is a low-interest 5% fixed-rate loan that must be paid back to your institution. When applying for a Perkins Loan, you will be required to sign a promissory note agreeing to repay the loan amount plus interest.

WHEN TO APPLY

You should apply by filing your FAFSA as soon as possible after January 1. Schools may not have enough funds to award every applicant who qualifies for a Perkins Loan

ELIGIBLE MAJORS

All majors are eligible

Federal Stafford Loan

WHO MAY APPLY

Federal Stafford Loans are for undergraduate, graduate, and professional students who are full-time or part-time. Stafford Loans are either subsidized or unsubsidized, meaning that if you demonstrate financial need according to your FAFSA, the U.S. Department of Education pays the interest on your loan. If you have demonstrated need, you may be eligible for a subsidized Stafford Loan. If you do not have financial need, you may be eligible for an unsubsidized Stafford Loan. Unsubsidized Stafford Loans require you to pay the interest as it accrues or interest can be added to the principal amount (If interest accumulates, the amount you will be required to repay will be higher).

HOW TO APPLY

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is the key application form in federal student aid. You may either file an electronic or a paper FAFSA. Apply online at www.fafsa.ed.gov.

You will be required to sign a promissory note agreeing to repay the loan amount, plus interest. Depending on whether you received a subsidized or unsubsidized Stafford Loan (or a combination of both), the amount you will be required to repay will vary. Please make sure you consult with your financial aid office at the institution you are attending.

WHEN TO APPLY

You should apply by filing your FAFSA as soon as possible after January 1.

ELIGIBLE MAJORS

All majors are eligible

Federal Plus Loan

WHO MAY APPLY

Parents of a dependent undergraduate students are eligible to apply for a Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS). Graduate students may also be eligible to apply for the PLUS Loan on behalf of themselves.

HOW TO APPLY

For the PLUS Loan, your parents must complete an application and promissory note (part of the application), which you may receive from the financial aid office at your institution.

WHEN TO APPLY

Your parents should apply for the PLUS Loan prior to the beginning of the semester, but may be able to apply after the academic year has begun.  Check with your financial aid office for more information.

ELIGIBLE MAJORS

All majors are eligible

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