College Grants for Adults

You have decided to take that brave step and dare to imagine the brighter future that could be yours with more education. There are many challenges waiting in store for those who choose to pursue higher education as an adult.

One of the biggest challenges is how to pay for it. If you are an average American, you are already carrying more debt than you wish you were. So, while college loans are a possibility, funding that you don’t have to pay back is better.

There are college grants available for adults who want to return to school. You just have to know where to look.

Before Applying Be Prepared

The best way to insure that you will be able to avail yourself of grant funding for college is to be prepared. Both public and private sources will want to know all about you, your financial position, your personal background and your goals before deciding to award you money for college.

What you should gather in preparation for applying for college grants? If you start with the FAFSA (Free Application for Student Aid), available online, you will have most of the information collected that will be needed.

The process can be completed online. You will want to have your previous year’s tax returns or at least your previous year’s W-2 forms from your employers. You will be asked to report both your taxed and non-taxed income.

Non-taxed income might include things like veteran’s benefits, child support and worker’s compensation. If you are married, you will also want to have all this information for your spouse, as well. There are all sorts of calculators and worksheets on the FAFSA website to help you complete the form.

Where to Look: Government Grants

As strange as it seems, given our current economy, this is a great time for government grants for college. The demands on our workforce have changed dramatically over the past 50 years.

The government has an interest in educating its citizens to move from the job skills that gave them good employment at the beginning of their careers to the skills they will need to stay employed, now and in the future. The most popular grant available is the Federal Pell Grant. You are eligible for a Pell Grant if are a U.S. citizen, a college graduate and have yet to complete a bachelor’s degree.

You must demonstrate financial need which you will do when filling out the FAFSA. Pell Grants are intended for those pursuing teacher certification or licensure. The U.S. Department of Education can provide a list of approved colleges, universities and programs where the grant can be used.

Where Else to Look: Private Grants

The government is not the only resource for grants. There are many private grants available for adults who want to return to school. The trick here is how and where to search for them. If you are a worker who has been displaced by new technology or jobs being exported overseas, there are private corporations and not-for-profit organizations that have funds available to grant. There are good directories available that list these sources.

The various sets of qualifications are unique to each grant source and can seem enormously restrictive. They are by necessity very selective. These individual sources have limited funds to grant want to make sure they are given to those most qualified by their unique standards.

Displaced homemakers will also find grant money set aside just for them, as will single parents and members of certain associations, societies or clubs.

Closer to Home

You might be surprised to find several good sources for college money right in your own backyard. For example, does your employer offer tuition reimbursement as an employment benefit? You might have to find the initial funds to pay for the tuition up front, but upon successful completion, you may get all of it back under an employer’s program. Many have specific grade or field of study requirements to qualify, but it is definitely worth the effort to check into it.

What about organizations you belong to? You might also check into your eligibility under yours or a family member’s military service. Many grant programs are awarded to groups who fit a particular description, such as veterans, Native Americans, residents of areas in critical economic need, women, and so on.

Many of these sources are practically right in your backyard. Check with your local chamber, library, community college or university. A lot of information is available on the web, but there is a lot to be said for some in person contact.

What Not to Do

Where there is money, there are scams. Be very careful whom and how much you pay for information about grants and loans. The worldwide web can give you a false sense of security when ordering catalogs, grant and scholarship searches or other services advertising help for college. Not only that, but when you consider the information you will be asked for, it is not hard to imagine that it could be used for an identity fraud. Work only with reputable sources that you can verify.

How can you tell if a source is reputable? The Federal Trade Commission reports that scams of this kind sound very similar in their advertising. Those that try to convince you that the only source of the grant and scholarship data is the information resource they are selling, and that you won’t have to do any work to get it are most likely scams and should be avoided at all costs.

The FTC even lists organizations who have been identified as scams. Before you plunk down your money for a catalog or service, check FTC.Gov for more information.

What Grants Cover and Don’t Cover

Most grants will be very specific about what they cover. Some grants cover tuition and books, only. Others cover living expenses while you study. Still others may cover travel expenses for studies abroad. Check carefully not only for what grants cover, but if they will expect documentation of the covered expenses.

In many cases, the grant funds will be sent directly to your college of choice who may have requirements for withdrawal of funds not used directly for tuition. The best way to avoid rude surprises is to read the documentation for your grant carefully. If you do not understand the restrictions placed on use of the funds, meet with your college bursar who will most likely be able to explain it in plain terms.

Grants for Specific Professions

The greater the need in an area, the more grants money you may find available. For example, the shortage of nurses and nursing related professionals has been a problem for many years. There is such a strong demand, that different organizations are paying for people to become nurses. If healthcare is in your area of interest, this would be worth looking into.

The country is also in great need of teachers. If you can see yourself teaching children in the kindergarten through twelfth grade, you will also find assistance available.

In many cases, the benefits of choosing one of these professions extends beyond grant money for college. Many municipalities, for example, offer housing subsidies to teachers who want to own homes close to where they teach. As you are exploring your new life after college, look for what is most needed. There is where you will find the most resources.

Conclusion

Many of those who are energized by their decision to move forward in their lives through higher education get the wind taken out of their sails by the search for funding. It takes time, effort and perseverance.

And, it’s worth it! A college education, once achieved is something that no one can ever take away from you. It is a permanent asset to your life, not only in your ability to earn a better income, but in the fulfillment of working at truly rewarding career.

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College Grants for Adults, 7.8 out of 10 based on 28 ratings

 

 

38 Comments on “College Grants for Adults”

  1. James Fleming Says:

    Hello, I am a 31 year old military vet entering my final year of college. I currently am enrolled at the University of Mansfield in PA as a criminal justice major. Only being able to pay bills by collecting unempolyment while attaining my college education, I am seeking any financial help that is available to help pay for my college tuition.
    Thank You

  2. Alexander McHellon Says:

    Greetings, My name is Alex McHellon. I am a 27 year old homeless veteran that is currently attending Tacoma Community College. I am seeking financial help to allow me to completely focus on my schoolwork. (current GPA around 3.5)

  3. Bert Parham III Says:

    I want to complete my post-secondary educational program(MBA-Health Care Management) at Columbia Southern University online. My problem is money. I need about $6000.00 to complete this program. Can you advise me where to look for some assist in getting these funds. Used GI Bill to earn my BS degree. I am a 63 year old Black Veteran of the USAF. I have completed 16 hours toward my MBA, run out of money. Please help. Please email me as soon as possible.

  4. addison fasula Says:

    I have recently joined Bryant and Stratton College. I am looking for some grant money to help me pay off my student loans and to help pay for my books and also to help me buy a computer so that I will be able to do my homework from home. I live around 45 miles from the college, so it is out of my way to keep going back and forth just to do my homework. If you could i would appreciate any and all help that could be given.
    Thank you very much.

  5. Dorothy Kay Says:

    I am a middle-aged jewish widow on disability. I need immediate funds to pursue non-traditional education leading to self-employment.

  6. lauren Says:

    hello
    i am a 55 year unemployed black female .i will embark on a new educational journey on my 56 birthday 3-5-56 ..i need all the financial help i can get. please contact me as soon as possible.
    thank you

  7. Ken Marshall Says:

    I am a 43 year old father currently out of work and on workers compensation temporary disability. I have been out of work since March 2011. Before getting hurt I was a sales manager for a construction equipment dealership. I worked my way up to that position without having a college education. After being laid off I found I was not able to get an equivalent job due to the lack of education. I would like to have information on how to get grants to work toward a degree at the community college level in business management. THey are necessary as I am not sure when I will be able to work and earn income. Any help would be appreciated.

    THank you.

  8. Franklin Hamilton Says:

    Hello,
    i am a 40 year old Farther, I have graduated from a vocational trade school in Heavy Equipment Operations and worked for a Great company, until i was laid off due to our economy. I have had a chance to use what i learned in the class room, in the feild. “That is a great feeling.”

    I am now looking to go back to school and learn more. I know with your help i could return to the company even more valuable.

  9. Kenneth Greene Says:

    I am a 44 yr old father & husband who’s been out of work since September of 2011,looking to further my education.Since being laid off i join a program which help me obtain a certificate in facility maintence,but still need to obtain hvac license, if someone could kind enough to help it would allow this husband & father to return to work to better support my family.

  10. Wendy McGill Says:

    I am a 33 yr old housewife and I’ve been struggling to find work and seeing how I could benefit from going back to school, it would make me more marketable right now, I am having struggles of becoming a a medical secretary/medical assistant because of the financial aspect. All I want to do is to provide my family with a good life compared to what I lived through when I was younger. I would love to receive information on scholarships, grants that would help me pay for 2 yrs of my education. I want to be the 1st in my family that I could proudly say I am a college graduate.

  11. Cathy Cunningham Says:

    I am a 46 year old female who is about to attend her senior year of College as a Nursing student. I have worked very hard. I was committed to raising my children and now I am helping my daughter raise her two special needs sons, autistic and cerebral palsy while attending school full time. They are a true blessing, but at same time, school and boys are very time consuming. I have found myself 13, 500 short of finishing my education and I am not sure what to do. I have borrowed all the money they will allow me to borrow.

  12. Cliff Mersfelder Says:

    I am a 40 year old. a disabled veteran and single parent. I am looking to go back to school to complete my degree in accounting. I have used up all my VA benefits and need to find help going back to school. I am also trying to start my own business in accounting and need the degree to get my business going, no one wants to go to an accounting service if you do not have a college degree. Thank you for any help you can give me.

  13. J. B. Fulgham Says:

    Hello,

    I’m a 40 year father of three young children. I have a B.S. in Communications. I’m currently working in Aquatic Wildlife Management. As fun as my job is it doesn’t pay enough for me to provide for my family. I have experience in the trucking industry a driver and business owner. I need some advice on how to get grants/loans for grad. school.

    Respectively,

    Bryan

  14. Karey Morgan Says:

    Interested in grants for living expenses .

  15. Daryl Teagle Says:

    I am currently attending ITT-Technical Institute, (candidate for Computer Electronics Engineering Degree). I have changed careers after being laid off following 20 years in the printing industry. The unemployment benefit expires at the end of 2012, leaving 2 more terms before my degree is complete. My Grade Point Average is (3.97), nearly perfect in a challenging environment. I simply need a little help for housing cost’s to get me to the end. Thank you for your consideration. -Daryl

  16. Veronica Manga Says:

    My husband has been going to Kieser University he has no idea am posting this message on here. But yesterday I felt so sad to hear him when he told me he might have to stop going to school.We don’t have the money for him to continue going. He has been working so hard and putting all his effort into his education for almost two years. That it’s so sad to see him have to quit now. If there is someone out there that can help us. He owes around 5,000 to continue with school. He is presueing for a nursing career and has passeed all his classes with high scores. Apart from school he is a really hard working man and always receiving awards at work for his hard work and dedication and he is a great husband and father of two beautiful girls. Please if someone can help us let him reach his goal. May God Bless that person out there.

  17. rick klinger Says:

    Im a 31 yr old male in culinary arts program and I am looking for help to find finaces to do an internship for my culinary career. The intership is over seas and I dont know where to look for help on paying the 7000 fee for the course or for funds of my living expiecnses any help would be appriated because I dont want to turn my oppurtunity to go to Ireland down because of not being able to afford it.

  18. Gary Smyth Says:

    Hi I am a 39 year old student. The reason I went back to school is because I like many of the people in the U.S. lost my job due to the failing economy. I am in my last year and have run out of funs to complete my degree. It is going to be very disappointing to come this close to finishing and then not finish. I have a wife and three amazing children that this degree could help to support. So what I am asking is if there is some way that I can get the remaining funds I need to finish my degree so that I can finally get the job or career I have always want it would be greatly appreciated. I want this so bad not only for myself , but also so I can finally start giving my family the things they deserve. My wife is such a trooper she works so hard for all of us and I am so thankful to have her in my life. Please if there is someone out there thank can help it would not go unforgotten. Thank you and God bless.

  19. Gussie Johnson Says:

    My name is Gussie Johnson and I am a 46 year old single black female returning back to school. I have a 4.0 grade point average and I’m asking any Company that would like to help me pay for classes and books. I know it has to be a company that could right off the money to help me. Please help I attend Ashford University and you could just pay it to them directly.

  20. Alex DeRosa Says:

    Hi! My name is Alex DeRosa I am 25 years old and am going to Liberty University in the fall. I am going for a Masters in Christian Ministry and would like to go back and teach Youth Ministry some day. I am currently a youth pastor and do not make a lot of money. I am close to being able to go back to school and would only need $500 dollars to start back this fall. If you or your business could help out at all I would appreciate it. Thank you so much!

    Alex

  21. Catherine Perret Says:

    I am 43 unemployed with no degree. I need help finding all the recourses I can find to help me get a new career and hopefully be able to keep a stable home for myself and my children. I am a single parent who can’t handle working 2-3 jobs anymore. Please help!

  22. Thomas Murphy Says:

    How old do you have to be for an adult grant

  23. elizabeth sapp Says:

    how can i find a grant to cover my living expenses while attaining my bachelor degree.

  24. Shari Broughton Says:

    My name is Shari Broughton. I am 41 years old and would like to go back to school for construction and remodeling. I am in dire need of Grant money to help me focus on my education. I have 3 children and would like to get an education to give them a better life. I am unemployed and desperately looking for employment, but haven’t found work. I have been a waitress for 20 years and really have nothing to show for it. Please help.

  25. CarLotta Mitchell Says:

    I am 34 years of age and attended college when I was younger but got stuck in the real world and was unable to be successful at going to school FT and working FT. I am a single black female without kids and living on my own. I maintain my own household with just under 30k/year. I would love to return to school and actually finish with a college degree. I cannot receive grant money because according to FAFSA I make too much money; although I live check to check every month just to keep a roof over my head. I would like to attend an online university for Human Resources. I have worked in an Office Management/Payroll position going to agencies for many years. I am unsuccessful with finding a long term job and I would hope someone can assist me in returning to college while keeping the roof over my head.

  26. Hakeem Maturine Says:

    22 year old single AA male,intertested in returning to school for BS in computer science or engineering.

  27. Toni Wilson Joiner Says:

    iam 57 yrs old and would love to go back to school. can anyone tell me of any grants for senior citizens.

  28. Ivan Mitchell Says:

    I am in my Senior year at a major college. I was told my grant monies have ran out and I cant get a personal loan to cover my last two semesters what can I do?

  29. Ronald Murrell Says:

    I am also a 55 black male,currently rearing grandchild 4 and 8 years old boys. I work part-time while paying for classes out of my limited salary and as I go out of my pocket. That concept alone can be very challenging. Where can I get grants to paid for 20 more credits hours? Thank you for your support .

  30. Ebony M. Grant Says:

    I am a 36 year old woman who is VERY interested in going back to school. I started my AA program in Information Technology ten years ago but became comfortable in my so-called “good job” and believed the constant reassurance that new jobs would be made available within my company that I allowed it to derail my ultimate goal/s.Now that job that I placed my good faith in has become like any other, a dead end one with no advancements in sight. My almost 15 years I’ve invested mean ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to them and I am VERY eager to move on. On paper I may look as if I am comfortable financially but that’s just not the case. I spend $170 a week in transportation alone and because this and other financial responsibilities I was forced back home to live with my mother (where I DO NOT want or need to be). I am looking for someone, ANYONE who can help me FINALLY help me attain my TRUE happiness in a career I would love and I can get started on a family of my own. HELP ME PLEASE!

  31. Kevin Wicker Says:

    I am a 51 year old “late bloomer”. I am married with 2 young children — one is a special needs child. I worked hard for many years as a professional musician — 24 years as an independent producer with my own small recording studio in Nashville TN. I accomplished it all without a backer, with very little money of my own, and without a formal education.
    I came to Florida because of an opportunity to start a production company from a backer friend of mine. Unfortunately he was arrested for money laundering, and I lost my salary — as well as the means to continue doing business. I cannot afford (nor do I desire) to return back to Nashville. I have gone about as far as I want in a music career. I want to make a better life for my family. The ‘music biz’ no longer appeals to me. It’s not stable and is not what people assume it to be.
    I have considered getting my degree in Media and Communications, and was studying Web Design through an on-line college. But it got to the point where we couldn’t afford it, so I put it on hold.
    Although I am highly experienced in audio and video production, radio and jingle production, audio design and studio management, no one will hire me without some sort of degree.
    We are like a boat in the middle of an ocean at this point. No one is hiring me. I can’t even get a job as a forklift operator because I don’t have enough experience. (Although I’ve worked in many warehouses in the past trying to supplement my business). Whatever job I can find is at a labor force daily pay, and most times they give these little jobs to guys they’ve had an ongoing relationship with.
    It’s come to a dead end. We are living off food stamps and social security, and most times don’t have the money for gas or our other expenses.
    I am better than this, and I deserve a chance. I know my chances would greatly improve with a degree of some kind, in the field where I know I can thrive. It takes more than just ‘knowing someone’. I played that game for many years when I was trying to survive in the music world.
    I just want to make life better for us. I paid a lot of dues in the music biz, and it got me here. I’m sad because I worked so hard and made many sacrifices, but I’m determined to do things differently this time, and trade my guitar for a degree. I’m no stranger to hard work.
    When I attended the on-line college, I was making good grades, and receiving praise from my tutors. I was dedicated to it. But I just couldn’t afford it.
    I’ve never gotten a grant of any kind, so I don’t even know where to star. Any kind of advice, or prayer, would be appreciated. Thanks for taking the time to read this…

  32. Cynthia Jordan Says:

    I am a 37yr old single mother who is proud to say my son is getting ready to complete his first semester of college. I would like to know where i can get funding for my self to go back to school. I really need to get out of the food service industry and make a better life for my self. I have many son on the right track now it’s my turn.

  33. zainab Says:

    hi m 25 years old married women and have one 4 years old boy..my family condition was very poor so i left the school from 6 std..but now i want to complte my studys and want to be somthing in lfe for my kid bright future..my codition is not good to make my dream true and request u to help me in that so that i vll do somthing for my kid and family…thank u very much

  34. Rebecca Russell Says:

    My name is Rebecca and I have always been in the education arena. I suffered a stroke four years ago but through hard work and determination I am ready to get back to my love for teaching. However, I need a few classes now. Since I am disabled I would like to find a grant to help me complete this dream. My appreciation for all considerations for my request.

  35. Phyllis Montenegro Says:

    I am a mother of 4 children. I put off my education to finish college to maintain a home for my children and make sure they did what they were suppose to while in school. My children have gone through college and I am ready to get back into finishing my career. I have been in the healthcare for 25 years and would like to advance in my field. I want to finish my education before I leave this earth and wanted to know if I can get some assistance.

    Thank you

  36. Willie Rivers Says:

    I am a 39yr old father of 6 looking to further my education. My background is less than stellar but extremely old. I did well in high school always taking college prep classes but made some poor decisions in my late teens. I would like to get the education I once dreamed of so that I can provide for my children’s future so that they can focus on their studies when the time comes. I would like any information that may help with this. I did attempt to go to community college once a few years back but was told I could not get a pell grant due to the fact I never signed up for selective service. I never even knew what it was until they mentioned it. I was hit by a car my senior year of high school so I never signed up. I was told this is typically when one would sign up. Anyway, any information on grants, how to obtain an exemption for the Pell grant would be greatly appreciated.

  37. Myron Lee Says:

    I am a 29 year old Grad Student at Grand Canyon Uniuversity and I am seeking financial assistance in order for me to complete my my masters in criminal justice with an emphasis in Law Enforcement. I live in Minnesota but attend Grand Canyon via their long distance program. I have hit a financial road block and need help. I have 3 kids 1 daughter and twin boys. I am also engaged to be married in June of 2015. I currently work at the public defenders office and with unexpected financial strains I`m facing, it has put a barrier in the way of me completing my degree. Any Information at all on how I can pay for my education would be greatly appreciated. God Bless You.

  38. Folau Lauaki Says:

    Hi i am a 28 year old father of two boys who is looking to become a certified electrician, and need help with paying for school. i currently work two jobs just to keep a roof over our heads and food on the table. I want to give my boys the world and more, but i am confined to a check to check lifestyle. My sons ages are 1 year old and a 2 month. We would appreciate it a lot if we could get some help.

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