The Federal Pell Grant Program, managed by the U.S. Department of Education, provides grants to low-income students to promote access to postsecondary education. Pell Grants are awarded to eligible undergraduate students who have not earned a bachelor’s or professional degree. The U.S. Department of Education uses a formula to determine a student’s financial need.
During the fiscal year of 2014, the Pell Grant program spent nearly $30 billion providing almost 9 million students with aid. The Pell Grant program receives the largest share of the federal education budget. Demographically, 46.3% of Pell Grant recipients are white, 23.7% are black, 20.4% are Hispanic, and 4.8% are Asian.
Unlike loans, a Federal Pell Grant does not have to be repaid. Grant amounts can change yearly. For the 2014-2015 award year, the maximum award is $5,730. Grant amounts are dependent on several factors:
- Financial need
- Cost of attendance
- Status as a full-time or part-time student
- Plans to attend school for a full academic year or less
The Federal Pell Grant is limited to 12 semesters or the equivalent of six years. Individuals are eligible for the grant if enrolled in an undergraduate, vocational, or trade school at any of the 5,400 participating higher education institutions around the country. Also, non-U.S. citizens, students with criminal convictions, and students with intellectual disabilities may be eligible for a Federal Pell Grant. See eligibility requirements here.
The Federal Pell Grant requires students to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Students are required to fill out a FAFSA every year to be eligible for the Federal Pell Grant. Click here for more information about the FAFSA.
Transform Consulting Group understands that helping college students navigate through all financial assistance options available to them is a critical component of any college/career readiness program. Transform Consulting Group is working with several organizations to improve post-secondary enrollment and completion rates. Contact us today to learn more!