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Scholarships - Financial Aid

For college-bound students, there are three main types of financial aid: 
  • Grants
    award money for college which does not need to be paid back. These are usually difficult to obtain and are often awarded based on the student and family's financial need.
  • Loans are given, typically by the federal government, and need to be paid back at a low rate of interest, after the student has completed college.
  • Scholarships come in many forms and from many sources, from merit-based scholarships and essay contests to awards for being left-handed or designing the best prom dress or tuxedo out of Duck Tape. Some are given directly from the university, while others come from corporations and non-profit foundations. The money must be used for college tuition, room, board, and books, but does not need to be repaid.

Grants and Loans

All college-bound students should apply for grants and loans through the federal government, even if they don't think they will be awarded anything based on financial need. Often, colleges have money to help students, but they cannot award it if a FAFSA application is not on file. Use the link below to fill out the FAFSA online in February of your senior year to apply for federal assistance (i.e., grants and loans):


It is the students who take the time to investigate and apply for scholarship who have the chance to earn them. It takes a bit of leg-work, but the payoff can be worth it. Sometimes scholarships award multiple winners but very few students apply; in such a case, the student's chances are very good.
Our district's Scholarships page is often recommended as the first place to search. When any counselor at any of our districts seven schools receives information on scholarships, they are posted here. They are arranged chronologically, with closest due dates appearing first. Students my conduct keyword searches or narrow the list by grade level. Enter using the link below:
Where else should a student search? Below is a short collection of links to scholarship sites. Students may also conduct a general web search for scholarships using any search engine, such as Google or Yahoo! Be alert for scams! Any scholarship or scholarship search service that charges fees may be a warning sign.
This scholarship opportunity awards reduced tuition to any of the three in-state public universities to students who exceed the AIMS standards in Reading, Writing, and Math; earn all A's and B's in their Core Competency courses, have a 3.5 Core Competency GPA, and meet certain SAT or ACT score requirements. In 2012 the Arizona Board of Regents reduced the award to cover only 25% the cost of tuition and has added the additional ACT/SAT criteria. Because of these changes, we do not necessarily recommend this scholarship opportunity, as traditional merit-based awards tend to be larger and easier to earn.
Dan Brugger,
Sep 15, 2011, 7:54 AM