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Student Aid FAQ

How to Pay for Grad School
Answered by Anita Thomas on 01/03/2020

To qualify for federal, state, and college financial aid for graduate school, you have to submit the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid). The FAFSA is required to receive federal and state grants and scholarships, as well as federal student loans, including Perkins Loans, Direct Unsubsidized Loans, and Grad PLUS Loans.

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Do I have to fill out the FAFSA every year?
Answered by Edvisors Network on 11/01/2015
Yes, most academic financial aid offices require that you re-apply for financial aid by completing the FAFSA application every year you're enrolled in school. One important reason you should fill out your FAFSA every year: your eligibility for financial aid can differ from year to year. Factors that can affect your financial aid eligibility can include changes in your family's economic status as well as the number of family members enrolled in college at the same time as you.

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Are there any repayment discounts for private consolidation loans?
Some lenders provide auto-debit discounts for making automatic monthly payments by direct debit from a bank account. Typical discounts include an interest rate reduction of 0.25% or 0.50%.

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How long is the repayment term for private consolidation loans?
The length of the repayment term varies by lender, typically 15, 20 or 25 years. Lenders offering fixed interest rates may have shorter repayment terms. The repayment term may depend on the amount borrowed.

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What's the difference between a FAFSA and a Renewal FAFSA?
The Renewal FAFSA is available to students who filed the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) during the previous award year. It uses demographic data from the previous year’s FAFSA to pre-fill this year’s FAFSA. This can significantly reduce the time it will take to complete the FAFSA.

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Are there really scholarships for twins?
Yes, there are several scholarships available for twins and other multiples, especially identical twins and triplets.

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Are there scholarships for students with red hair?
There is one scholarship for students with natural red hair color, ScholarshipRed. ScholarshipRed offers one $500 scholarship for redheads each year. The scholarship is open to high school juniors and seniors who have natural red hair color, reside in the U.S. and have a high school GPA of at least 2.5 on a 4.0 scale.

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How Long Does It Take to Apply for Financial Aid?
The application season for the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) opens on October 1 of each year. (The start date for the CSS/Financial Aid PROFILE form is also October 1.) After the family completes the FAFSA, it can take several months for the college financial aid office to determine a student’s financial aid eligibility. The family will then have a few weeks to decide whether to accept the offer of admission and the financial aid package.

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What should I do if my parents refuse to file the FAFSA?
Parents are sometimes unwilling to submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and/or other financial aid forms. But, parental information is required on the FAFSA of a dependent student, so a dependent student will not be able to qualify for need-based federal student aid without his or her parent’s help. There are many reasons why a parent may be unwilling to complete the FAFSA.

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What's the difference between scholarships and grants?
Both scholarships and grants are forms of gift aid, which is money for college that does not need to be earned or repaid. Although people often use the terms scholarships and grants as synonyms or interchangeably, there are important differences.

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