If you are considering nursing school, you have probably already discovered that it is not just a commitment academically, but financially as well. Tuition for nursing school continues to rise and so does the shortage of nursing all over the country. Therefore, there are grants that can help you pay for your education without taking out the hefty student loans. Keep in mind the more grants you receive and qualify for, the fewer loans you will need, which means you can graduate from nursing school with very little student loan debt.
Your first area of grant money to explore is with the federal government by way of Pell Grants. You will need to fill out and apply for the Student Aid Report, which will determine (based on your previous year’s earnings) how much of a Pell Grant you will be awarded for the year. Since it is need-based, the less you made, the more you get, and the same goes with the supplemental grant money that many schools participate in, which is also need-based.
Moreover, because of the shortage of nurses, those that are in school studying to become nurses also can find a lot of grant money available via their state. There are programs in some states that will repay a large percentage of any student loans you took out while in school, which can take the burden off of you when you finally graduate.
In addition, check with the university hospital in your city, preferably the largest one because often they have nursing programs that will pay for your schooling if you agree to work for the hospital for a certain amount of time once you graduate. It is a win-win situation for you because you are guaranteed a job upon graduation and your schooling is paid for if you complete the number of years the hospital requires. Many nursing students take advantage of this opportunity because it means you can literally walk out of nursing school debt-free.
Make sure, when you do apply for federal grants, state, and local grants that you do so early because many times these state or local grants are gone quickly. If you plan to specialize in some brand of nursing, keep in mind that there are grants specifically for these certain areas, so therefore, get all the information you can first, in order to have the most amount of money to pay for your education.
Because nursing is in demand and there is such a shortage, you will find that having your education completely paid for with both need-based grants and those at the state and local level is common today. There are many rewards for going into a helping profession such as nursing, but it is also a hard job and therefore one that provides a lot of free grant money.