Cal Grant is an unspecific student aid program administered by the California Department of Education, offering financial assistance to eligible California undergraduate students, skilled vocational training students, those in teaching certification programs, and the parents of students enrolled in approved community colleges. Cal Grants is often the largest source of free California state-funded financial aid for college students in need.
There are two types of Cal Grants, Federal Grants and State Funding Grants, both of which provide funding for college. You can qualify for either a Federal or State Grant based on your financial need, but not both.
Each year, the state releases a set of guidelines that must be followed in order to qualify for either type of funding. The guidelines are designed to ensure that the funds are only used to fund students attending the specific school, program, or community college that is funded. Although there are some exceptions to the guidelines, generally the rules are to apply only to students who are attending a California community college and to attend a school that is approved by the state for Cal Grant awards.
Although Cal Grants is widely accepted as a reliable source of funding for college, it is important to remember that it is an award, not a loan. You do not need to have your bank account in order to obtain an award; instead you must follow all the guidelines that are laid out by the state.
The process of applying for Cal Grants is relatively simple. The following instructions will help you apply for and receive a Cal Grant for the first time.
It's best if you apply for the award early so that you can take care of any questions about your eligibility requirements. You may also want to contact your financial aid office to find out if there are any specific deadlines for your application. It's also a good idea to review the information provided in your Financial Aid Letter, which provides a summary of your situation and a detailed explanation of your financial goals.
After your Cal Grant has been approved, you will need to submit the necessary documentation to confirm that you met the criteria for the award. To apply, you should submit a letter from the school you are attending with your financial information, along with proof of your work and/or volunteer hours. Your award may be mailed to you in as little as three weeks. In . . . . . . order to make sure that you have received your award, you should review it closely to ensure that all of the necessary information was submitted and that you have correctly filled out all the documentation.
Make sure that you contact your state's financial aid office to confirm that your award has been paid. If it has not been paid on time, you should attempt to apply for another award. Also, be sure to check in with the state's financial aid office to see if you can apply for more than one Cal Grant at a time.
If you are unable to obtain any Cal Grant awards through your state, you can apply online for additional funding. By completing a Cal Grant application, you can apply for multiple grants.