Teaching and Education Grants
While it is a general rule for all college students to investigate all the possibilities of free money to pay for college, such as grants and scholarships, it is all the more important for education majors to avoid large amounts of debt. Education majors should take extra care to exhaust all the possibilities for free money, college grants, awards, programs, and scholarships prior to taking out a student loan to pay for their education. Scholarships for education majors are quite plentiful. Depending on your level of education, you will want to look into details of our website regarding undergraduate grants, master’s degree grants, graduate school grants, and doctoral grants as well.
Federal Grants for Education Majors
In addition to applying for the Pell Grant and investigating other sources of financial aid, the students in the education field should also consider the Teacher Education for College and Higher Education (TEACH) Grant.
TEACH Grants provide up to $4,000 per year to students who will teach in elementary or secondary schools that serve low-income families. That means a total of up to $16,000 is available for undergraduate students and $8,000 is available for graduate students. It is important to check with the financial aid offices of your university for full details. Follow the instructions carefully and remember, you may need to check with an academic advisor prior to submitting your TEACH Grant Application Form. The application form is specific to your university and can either be accessed at your university’s website or your university’s financial aid offices.
The U.S. government has a TEACH Grant Fact Sheet available as a pdf file online. The file highlights the key points of the TEACH Grant commitment and requirements. For example teachers are needed in certain fields such as bilingual education, English language acquisition, foreign languages, mathematics, reading skills, science and special education.
When a student is considering applying for a TEACH Grant, it is important to remember that there is an agreement to serve the community. The TEACH Grant requires participants to serve as full-time teachers for low-income students for four academic years within a period of eight calendar years. Failure to complete the requirements means that candidates will have to repay the money received as a Federal Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan.
The TEACH Grant Application requires candidates to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), even though there is no need to demonstrate financial need to be awarded a TEACH Grant.
State Grants for Education Majors
In California, The Assumption Program of Loans for Education (APLE) is designed to fill in the gap of subject areas where there is a critical shortage of teachers. For an application, see this site and click the appropriate application form. Under APLE, the California Student Aid Commission (CSAC) may assume some of a candidates outstanding student loan.
For residents of the state of New York, interested in teaching math or science, there is free money for college available to help students pay for an undergraduate or master’s degree, known as the NYS Math and Science Teaching Incentive Scholarships. The scholarship would potentially pay for all of a candidate’s undergraduate studies or up to one full year of graduate studies. See the New York State Higher Education Services Corporation for more details.
In the state of Maryland, the Workforce Shortage Student Assistance Grant Program (WSSAG) helps students who will work in fields such as child care, human services, nursing, physical and occupational therapy, public service, teaching, and social work.
To see whether your state offers special grants to help education majors pay for college, look up your state under grants by location.
Foundations to Help Education Majors Pay for College
- The American Federation of Teachers (AFT) is a valuable resource to look for support and ideas. It is a good idea to join AFT to benefit from programs, and apply for grants and scholarships in the teaching field.
- The Robert G. Porter Scholars Program has a one-time $1,000 grant and a four-year $8,000 scholarship.
- The website teachingtips.com has a list of 101 scholarships just for teachers.
Summary for How to Pay for an Education Degree
College students who want to know how to pay for an education degree will find it important to (1) apply for the Pell Grant and the TEACH grant, (2) look for opportunities for free college money from their state of residence, and (3) and seek out scholarships of education majors.