More than half of the top 500 public universities in the United States have been awarded at least one grant in the past 10 years.
The top 10 schools received more than $4.5 billion in total federal student aid in fiscal year 2016-17.
But while they’re often seen as elite schools, their funding is a lot less than the rest of the country.
And that means students can’t use the money to attend school, which is the primary reason so many students have trouble paying for college.
While colleges are getting tougher on student loans, there are still many students who are not able to afford the costs of attending college.
Here are 10 steps you can take to help students pay for college while still being eligible for the federal Pell grant.
Get a financial aid package 2.
Apply for financial aid and other forms of aid 3.
Check your state and federal aid packages 4.
Read the information available on the website of your local government agency 5.
Look up your state’s financial aid requirements, such as aid limits and deadlines 6.
Visit your state website for more information on your financial aid programs 7.
Find out how much your federal Pell grants will be available for in your state 8.
Visit the website for your state 9.
Apply online for federal Pell aid for the upcoming academic year 10.
Apply early to receive financial aid for college If you need to apply to colleges, be sure to check the websites of your state universities and other public institutions, such in-person interviews or phone interviews, to see if you’re eligible for aid.
For help applying to colleges online, visit the Department of Education’s online application guide for public institutions.
1 / 9 2.
Find a financial counselor and get an evaluation 3.
Get an evaluation by an outside professional in person or by phone 4.
Get your financial counselor’s recommendation in writing 5.
Check the online college review portal to see how many colleges are accepting applications 6.
Read a school’s financial assistance policies 7.
Visit a local university’s website 8.
Get advice on applying for college loan assistance through the Pell Grant program 9.
Check with a college’s financial services office for specific guidance on financial aid eligibility 10.
Visit one of the nation’s more than 10,000 federal student loan counseling centers and ask for advice 1 / 10 2.
Get tips on finding a good financial aid counselor 3.
Talk to your family about the financial aid you’ll need 4.
Check out the College and Career Center’s Financial Aid & Information Center to see what other financial aid options are available to you 5.
See if your college has a federal Pell Grant scholarship program 6.
Learn more about federal Pell Grants available to students in the community 7.
Take advantage of the Federal Student Loan Interest Reduction Program 8.
Talk with your financial advisor about whether or not your loan is eligible for federal aid 9.
Read all of the loan information on the U.S. Department of Labor’s website 10.
Find scholarships that are available through the Federal Pell Grant Program