• Financial aid can come from federal, state, school, and private sources to help you pay for college or career school. There are three types of federal student aid:

    • Grants—financial aid that doesn't have to be repaid (unless, for example, you withdraw from school and owe a refund)
    • Work-study—a work program through which you earn money to help you pay for school
    • Loans—borrowed money for college or career school; you must repay your loans, with interest
  • Federal Grants

    Grants and scholarships are often called “gift aid” because they are free money—financial aid that doesn’t have to be repaid. Grants are often need-based, while scholarships are usually merit-based.                                               

    Grants and scholarships can come from the federal government, your state government, your college or career school, or a private or nonprofit organization. Do your research, apply for any grants or scholarships you might be eligible for, and be sure to meet application deadlines! 

    Federal Pell Grant

    Federal Pell Grants usually are awarded only to undergraduate students who display exceptional financial need and have not earned a bachelor's, graduate, or professional degree.

    More Information on Federal Pell Grant

    HOPE Grant

    Georgia's HOPE Grant (a separate program from the HOPE Scholarship) is available to Georgia residents who are working towards a certificate or diploma (continuing education programs are not eligible) at an eligible college or university in Georgia.

    More Information on HOPE Grant

    HOPE Career Grant

    The HOPE Career Grant, formerly known as the Strategic Industries Workforce Development Grant, is available to HOPE Grant-qualified students who enroll in select majors specifically aligned with industries in which there are more jobs available in Georgia than there are skilled workers to fill them.

    More Information on HOPE Career Grant

    Eligible Programs

    HOPE GED Grant

    Georgia's HOPE GED Grant is available to students who earned a General Education Development (GED/high school equivalency) diploma awarded by the Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG).

    More Information on HOPE GED Grant

    Zell Miller Grant

    Georgia's Zell Miller Grant is available to Georgia residents who are working towards a certificate or diploma at a Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG) or University System of Georgia (USG) institution.

    More Information on Zell Miller Grant

  • Federal Loans

    If you apply for financial aid, you may be offered loans as part of your school’s financial aid offer. A loan is money you borrow and must pay back with interest.   

    If you decide to take out a loan, make sure you understand who is making the loan and the terms and conditions of the loan. 

    There are many different types of loans:

    • Direct Subsidized Loans are loans made to eligible undergraduate students who demonstrate financial need to help cover the costs of higher education at a college or career school.
    • Direct Unsubsidized Loans are loans made to eligible undergraduate, graduate, and professional students, but eligibility is not based on financial need.
    • Direct PLUS Loans are loans made to graduate or professional students and parents of dependent undergraduate students to help pay for education expenses not covered by other financial aid. Eligibility is not based on financial need, but a credit check is required. Borrowers who have an adverse credit history must meet additional requirements to qualify.
    • Direct Consolidation Loans allow you to combine all of your eligible federal student loans into a single loan with a single loan servicer.

    Federal Student Aid Website

  • Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)

    Complete the FAFSA

    Required Documents for FAFSA

    FAFSA How To Guides

    FAFSA Tips & Tricks Video

    Next Steps 

  • FSA ID

    Before beginning the FAFSA, student and parent(s) must create an FSA ID. The FSA ID is needed to electronically sign the FAFSA. You MUST have a social security number to create an FSA ID.

    Create an FSA ID

    How to Create an FSA ID Video Guide