Going to school can be expensive and it can get to be difficult to find the funding to pay for your aviation education. When researching schools, it can be just as important to research ways to fund your education.
Taking loans only, whether through private loan, federal financial aid, or funding direct from the school, can add up and leave a mountain of debt to repay upon graduation. Instead of relying primarily on loans, consider some options to help fund your education.
Before you get started on your funding quest, take a little time to brainstorm first. Grab a notepad and just start writing down your qualities. Are you short, tall, a minority, have a parent in the military, love coca-cola, are you left handed? Those last two might seem a little odd but believe it or not, there are funding opportunities for just about everything. (Yes, there is a scholarship for left handed people.) Running out of ideas, grab a good friend or a family member that can help you come up with ideas for your hunt!
Get a Grant
Grants are a great way to pay for education. They can be challenging to locate and knowing where to look can certainly make a huge difference. When submitting your FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) for a federal loan, consider applying for the grants that are offered as well. You may just qualify to get a little additional funding that won’t need to be repaid. Also consider checking out the American Flyers website which has great information about grants.
Another fantastic way to save from racking up debt is looking into scholarship options. There are hundreds available and you just have to know where to look. Consider creating an account with scholarships.com a great site that acts as a search engine just for scholarships. Also visit the FAA’s website with current information about grants and scholarships specifically for those pursuing an education in aviation.
Remember that list you made? This is one area that list can come in handy. Consider everything to which you have a membership or card, think about where you live. Cities, businesses, banks, they all have scholarships to offer students. Take a little time and ask. Not sure if the local grocery store has one, email the corporate office. The worst they can say, is no. Who know though, you might find a little extra money, even just $50 can pay for a textbook.
Have parents who are or were in the military? Were you or are you in the military? Consider utilizing your options of the G.I. Bill to help fund your education. You’d be amazed of the benefits that can come your way when using this bill to pay for school.
Do you belong to any Native American Tribes? If so, consider contacting your potential school and your tribal council about the possibility of using tribal funding to cover your education. Whatever school you attend, ask up front about working with someone in finances that specializes in utilizing tribal funding. This is another great way to fund your education.
Finally, the most common method of funding an education, loans. For schools that qualify, Federal loans are available for student in two forms, subsidized and unsubsidized. This basically means, they are both loans they both will require repayment. The big difference, the government pays your interest on subsidized loans while you are enrolled while unsubsidized loans you will be responsible for that interest.
Remember when taking loans, only borrow what you need to pay for education. Loan money is for school and school related items. Borrow the minimum, you aren’t’ required to take the full amount you are approved to receive. Take a little time, factor your expenses for school for that loan period and only borrow that amount. Remember, school loans are for school, not vacations or holiday presents.
Aviation Schools Online wants to help you become a successful student in finding the right school for you. Knowing what you need to fund your education and what avenues for alternate funding you might qualify for can be useful in choosing the right school. Be bold, after all, you’re planning a career in aviation, go after your goal and go after those options to fund your education!