As a student trying to pay for college or thinking about applying for college, there are some important things you should know about Federal Pell grant eligibility. Pell grants are a great way to help cover the cost of a college or university education, but every student who receives money through the program is required to meet certain criteria and maintain their eligibility throughout the grant award period.
The Federal Pell grant program is designed to help low income students be able to attend college. So, the first requirement to be eligible for the Pell grant program is to be able to show that you have a financial need. This is usually done through listing on your application how much income you have and your assets, such as a college savings account.
If you are a minor who still receives support from someone else, like your parents or guardians, this information usually comes from them and is based on their income and assets.
The next Federal Pell grant eligibility requirement is that you finished high school and got a diploma, or other certificate that is acceptable.
If you didn’t finish high school, you can use a GED (General Education Development) certificate for this requirement. There are also other standards that your state has that can make you eligible for a grant. Another way to meet this requirement is to have already completed six or more credit hours towards your degree.
Among the other grant eligibility criteria is that you are already taking classes at your college and are making good progress, or that you’ve been accepted by your college to start working on a degree or certificate. This can include distance or online courses toward a degree or certificate if that program is accepted by the school as being eligible for grants. You must also be a United States citizen or a noncitizen who meets certain rules, and you must provide your valid Social Security number. In addition, men who haven’t registered with the Selective Service have to if they are supposed to.
Federal Pell grant eligibility also includes you are working towards completing your degree (you can’t be on academic suspension) and that if you have student loans they must be current. You also have to certify that you will only be using the money for your education and that you have not been convicted of any drug-related offenses. While it may seem like there are a lot of eligibility requirements for Pell grants, the truth is, it is very easy to meet the criteria set out by the Federal government and receive grant money to help pay for college.