Find Out What Grants Are Available For Your Educational Field!


Economic times are tough, but the best way to still increase one’s income is by participating in degree programs online. Still, even if you hold down a regular job while going to school, that doesn’t stop a landlord wanting the rent the first of the month. This lack of finances is a leading reason why many students drop out in their first two years.

Don’t think the government isn’t aware. As it happens, the Board of Education has developed a supplemental grant for those with extreme needs. One of these programs was launched in 2006. The Academic Competitive Grant (ACG) can provide a freshman up to $750 in addition to the Pell. A sophomore can get even more, up to $1,300. For third year or higher students, there is a different program, called SMART. If you need more information about university degrees, look on the internet.  

There are requirements that come with the ACG. First, a candidate must complete a FASFA form and apply for the Pell. The Board of Education decides if the applicant is entitled to the ACG. If so, it will send out an additional questionnaire that also must be completed.

Entitlement isn’t totally automatic either. For starters, the student must either be a U.S. citizen or a permanent resident. One must also take a minimum of a half-semester’s worth of courses per semester. While the money is supplemental to the Pell Grant, the total sum awarded for both cannot exceed the cost of attendance.

One must also attend an accredited school program. The rules have been modified in 2009 to allow for home schooling, but there are two provisos there. The first is it has to be recognized by the state the student lives in. The second is the level of study must meet a federal standard for “rigorousness”.

A student must also stick to a predetermined group of degrees. While the field of studies can be pretty broad, and includes just about every form of science, tech, engineering, math, teaching and a number of liberal arts, no one gets an ACG for basket weaving or something similar. For a list of recognized degrees and specialties, go to the Board of Education’s website. There is an abundance of information about college grant on the web.

There is one extra proviso for students applying for a second year of ACG money. They must have maintained a 3.0 average (out of a 4.0) in their freshmen year, or whatever the college’s equivalent of a 3.0 is. The college also must be accredited, but as far as the ACG is concerned, the school can be either on campus or online.

There is supplemental money out there for traditional and online university degrees. An extra $750 can never hurt when one’s trying to advance one’s education. For more information on student loans and on the ACG, there is a website with much more information.


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