Financial Aid 101

You can watch a variety of videos explaining key financial aid concepts in an easy to understand format.  Financial Aid 101 Video Library

What is Financial Aid?

Financial Aid helps pay the costs of attending college:

  • tuition and fees
  • room and board
  • books and supplies
  • transportation
  • miscellaneous personal expenses
  • required loan fees
  • study abroad costs
  • dependent care expenses
  • expenses related to a student's disability

Financial aid is based on financial need and other criteria, like grades. Aid packages can include grants and scholarships -- that don't have to be paid back -- and student loans - that do need to be paid back.

Financial aid comes from a variety of sources: the federal government, New York State government, the College, community organizations and associations, and other groups.

The Different Types of Financial Aid

Grants

Grants are money that doesn't have to be paid back and are awarded specifically to help fund your education. Learn more about grants.

Scholarships

Scholarships are money that does not need to be paid back. Scholarships are awarded based on various factors and may require that certain conditions be met to qualify initially for the scholarship or to maintain the scholarship in the future. Apply for Scholarships.

Student Loans

Student loans must be paid back — with interest. Before taking out a student loan, make sure you have applied for all of the scholarships and grants you are eligible to receive from the federal and state governments, your college, and organizations in your community. You apply for Federal Student Loans by completing the FAFSA.

If you still have a funding gap after exhausting all federal and state sources of aid, you may consider a private loan to make up the difference. Learn more about student loans.

Veteran's Benefits

The Veteran's Affairs Office provides general information and assistance filling out Veteran's Benefits forms quickly and accurately. They will explain academic requirements, VA benefit amounts, and the timing of payments. Learn more by visiting the Veteran's Affairs Office website.

Educational Opportunity Program (EOP)

The Educational Opportunity Program provides assistance to NYS residents who are academically and financially disadvantaged as defined by state guidelines. Learn more by visiting the EOP website.