Everything you’d Want to Know about the FSEOG

Students in need of financial aid for the completion of their higher education may also look to the Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG) for it. Under this program, undergraduate college students are awarded money, which they do not need to pay back. Depending on different eligibility factors, a student could receive an amount falling anywhere between $100 to $4,000.

When it comes to the award itself, the college may pay the students itself, or they get the checks from the government. However, three-quarters of these awards are sent to the students via the government.

You may apply for the FSEOG here. However, we realize that students may have questions about the grant. We try to answer the most important ones below:

Is there a Criterion for FSEOG Eligibility?

All federal financial aid programs aimed at students have a criterion to determine a candidate’s eligibility. The FESOG does too. To satisfy its requirements, applicants must:

  • Have a valid SSN assigned only to legal U.S. citizens
  • Fill out the FAFSA form, which puts them in the running for all federal student aid programs
  • Provide proof of substantial financial need
  • Pick an accredited college/school to apply to

I am a New Student. Do you have Any FSEOG Tips for Me?

Yes, we do! Firstly, list several schools and not just one when applying for FSEOG. Here’s why: if approved, you will get a letter from different institutions with different FSEOG amounts. But multiple choices mean you will have some wiggle room for negotiation. Say, your first choice intends to award you with a lower FSEOG, you can then get it increased.

Do this to make it happen:

  1. Make photocopies of all the award letters with a higher FSEOG
  2. Write a letter to your first-choice school and explain you’d like an increase
  3. Send out the letter as quickly as possible

There isn’t a certainty that they will reconsider but why not ask anyway. If they refuse, you can always choose to enroll at one of the competing schools.

I am a Returning Student. Do you have Any FSEOG Tips for Me?

When students continue with the FSEOG, they will notice a reduction in the award in comparison to the amount from prior years. To correct that, you can appeal to your financial aid office. Since the total amount for Federal need-based funding changes each year, you may just get your wish granted!

Your school may even have additional funding available, so that they can reconsider your FSEOG award amount. Follow these steps for a re-evaluation of your FSEOG award:

  • Find an administrator you can trust who will seriously consider your request and discuss your case with them
  • Depending on their reply, send them an email detailing the same
  • Follow up to ask if the office received your email after 4-5 days

Will the FSEOG Get Me through School?

The highest that FSEOG can go is $4,000, which won’t sufficiently cover the cost of a college education. But you may not even receive that much. In that case, you’ll need a solid plan in place to cover the rest. Sure, a grant like this or a scholarship is free money. But both are also hard to come by.

Looking at the other end of the aid spectrum – or at loans – could tempt you. Even though, they are easy to get, most loans can’t be discharged in bankruptcy. When you take out a loan for studies, you make a dent in your expected future earnings. Post-graduation, you can’t expect to land a well-paying job immediately. Additionally, you will also have the interest to consider.

Therefore, consider working and attending school part-time. Or, juggle doing both full-time. Campus jobs, especially, would mean you won’t exhaust yourself during the commute. FSEOG candidates are given to part-time students, as well. Why not avail that opportunity while you continue to work part-time through school? You won’t have to go for a loan this way.

Some important points to remember are that you can receive any amount between $100 and $4,000 a year. Your award will depend on your financial need. But your school will also consider other things, such as if you receive any other aid or the availability of their funds. In some cases, the most students get isn’t more than $500. There is also a chance that you may not even get approved for FSEOG.

Are the FSEOG and Pell Two Different Grants?

Yes, they are. The Pell grant is another federal government program just like the FSEOG. However, the former differs from the FSEOG in the fact that it gives sufficient money to eligible students for completing college. The amount of money in the FSEOG program, on the other hand, is limited on a school to school basis. Thus, once students receive their FSEOG, they won’t be getting any more financial aid for that academic year.

In What Situation Must I Repay the Grant?

Normally, students aren’t beholden to the federal government to return the money they received as an award/grant. However, in some situations, they must pay it back partially or wholly. You should be familiar with those conditions, so you don’t err towards them.

They include:

  • Early withdrawals from the school or educational program for which the grant was given to you
  • Changing or altering your enrollment status in a way that it affects your grant. For instance, if you have begun going to school part-time, instead of full, you should inform your financial aid office about it. You will receive a reduced grant as a result. Failing to do that would mean you’ll have to pay back the additional amount.

Moreover, once the schools have distributed the FSEOG money, no more aid will be forthcoming from their side for that year. All federal aid is given to candidates on the priority of application basis. That is why you need to apply for FSEOG as early as you can. It is also the reason you should look at all the other options. We can help you do just that. Contact us immediately!

 

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