Paying for College

Fund Your Future: What You Need to Know About the 2017–18 FAFSA® from the California Student Aid Commission


FAFSA

• You will be able to submit your FAFSA® earlier. You can file your 2018–19 FAFSA as early as Oct. 1, 2018. 

• You’ll use earlier income and tax information. Beginning with the 2017–18 FAFSA, students will be required to report income and tax information from an earlier tax year. For example, on the 2017–18 FAFSA, you—and your parent(s), as appropriate—will report your 2015 income and tax information, rather than your 2016 income and tax information. 

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If you need help completing your FAFSA, stop by the College and Career Center to set up an appointment with one of our Santiago Canyon College Financial Aid Representatives. 

CAL GRANT PROGRAM

Cal Grants are one of the smartest ways to get cash for college. A grant is money you don't have to pay back. Cal Grants are up to $12,630* of free money annually for up to four years of college. *Amount varies depending upon the eligible school that you attend.

If you are a graduating high school senior or recent graduate, meet academic, financial and eligibility requirements, and submit two forms by the Cal Grant deadline, you may receive a Cal Grant! The money can be used for tuition, room and board, and even books or pencils.

You must be a California resident or AB 540 student to qualify.

Cal Grant Award Types

What is the Cal Grant deadline?
You must apply by March 2 to maximize your opportunity to receive an award.

How To Apply:  

In addition to the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), to apply for a Cal Grant a school certified Grade Point Average (GPA) must be submitted to the California Student Aid Commission (Commission) by the filing deadline. 

Cal Grant General Eligibility Requirements

WHERE TO USE YOUR CAL GRANT

Cal Grants are good at all UCs, CSUs, community colleges, and many eligible private, career and technical schools in California. Check for eligible schools by clicking the link below. 

Eligible and Ineligible Cal Grant Schools


MIDDLE CLASS SCHOLARSHIPS

The Middle Class Scholarship (MCS) is a program that provides undergraduate students with family incomes up to $165,000 a scholarship to attend a UC or CSU campus. Students must

  • Be a CA resident
  • Be a US citizen, permanent resident, or have AB 540 student status
  • Meet certain income standards
  • Maintain satisfactory academic progress
  • Not be in default on a student loan
  • Not be incarcerated

MCS scholarships are not set amounts and may vary by student and institution. The award is determined after you are aware awarded any federal Pell Grant, Cal Grant, and institutional need-based grant for which you are eligible. If you are selected to receive a MCS, you will be notified by the CA Student Aid Commission. 

CA CHAFEE GRANT FOR FOSTER YOUTH

If you are or were in foster care and have financial need, you may qualify for up to $5,000 a year for career and technical training or college. You don’t have to pay this money back. You may also be able to use your grant to help pay for child care, transportation and rent while you’re in school. You can use your Chafee Grant at any eligible California college or university or career or technical school, as well as schools in other states.

Chafee Grant 

To check your Chafee Grant status you can go online to 

WebGrants 4 Students


CA DREAM ACT APPLICATION

Completion of this application is required to determine eligibility for California student financial aid for AB540 eligible students. Your application will be processed by the California Student Aid Commission.

The Dream Application is not an application for federal financial aid. Students who are eligible to file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), must use that application to maximize their opportunity to receive student financial aid. The FAFSA application is on-line at www.fafsa.gov. Students should not complete both applications.

Assembly Bill (AB) 540 was passed in 2001 to allow non-resident students in California to pay the lower resident tuition and fees to California's public colleges and universities. In October 2011, AB131 was signed into law and allows students eligible for AB540 to also apply for state financial aid.

To qualify for California financial aid through AB131, non-resident students, including undocumented students, must:

  • Have attended a California high school for 3 or more full academic years between grades 9 through 12. They do not need to be consecutive years
  • Have or will graduate from a California high school or have attained a G.E.D.; or received a passing mark on the California High School Proficiency Exam (CHSPE);
  • Register or be currently enrolled at an accredited institution of higher education in California;
  • Not hold a valid non-immigrant visa (F,J,H,L,A,B,E, etc.);
  • Demonstrate financial need and meet all other program requirements.

If you believe you meet these requirements, please click the Dream Application link below.

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For detailed instructions on completing the CA Dream Act Application click here


Scholarships

Visit the College and Career Center or click here to access scholarships available for Orange High School students.


College Board: The Facts on Scholarships

  • You should never pay for a scholarship search. There are many free ones.
  • Organizations like businesses, clubs and churches usually fund private scholarships for students who belong to a certain group or meet certain requirements.
  • These institutions want the funds to go to qualified students. They don't keep the money a secret.
  • If you have to pay money to get money, it's probably a scam!

Scholarship Links

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