Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Know where to dig for scholarships and loans

Money's tight.

No doubt about that in this economy.

But there are funds out there for the college-bound student who's willing to look. High school guidance offices are filled with a wealth of helpful information and reputable scholarship search engines.

Michele Chamberlin, the career specialist at J.W. Mitchell High School, offers the following advice to those willing to dig in and do some research:

Familiarize yourself with the several forms of financial aid available: grants, scholarships and work study (money that doesn't have to be repaid) and student loans (which must be repaid). Don't assume you do not qualify for grants, scholarships, work study, loans from the federal and state level, as well as scholarships from colleges and private organizations. Thousands of dollars of free money go unclaimed each year.

Seniors applying for admission to colleges or universities should request a financial aid package (if available). Check with the school's financial aid office, as many admission applications are also used as the scholarship application.

Local scholarships are also available for Pasco County students. The application process begins in December. Students should check with the scholarship coordinators at their respective schools or visit

Get an early estimate of your eligibility for federal student aid: visit and complete the FAFSA4caster.

Parents should start to get their 2008 income tax information together as early as possible, as funds are distributed first-come, first served. The FAFSA process opens for the class of 2009 seniors in January.

Attend your school's Financial Aid Night — and bring your parents.

Be aware of deadlines and apply early! (Note: Juniors should start researching now for scholarship opportunities, as deadlines for many are in the spring of 2009.)

Get organized: Keep all of your financial aid documents in one place and keep copies of everything you submit.

>>Fast facts

Where to look

Scholarship funds are available; you just have to be proactive. Here are some helpful Web sites:











Know where to dig for scholarships and loans 10/21/08 [Last modified: Tuesday, October 21, 2008 10:36pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Rays are full of ideas they'd like to share when commissioner visits

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Commissioner Rob Manfred is coming to the Trop today. Hmm. Rays principal owner Stuart Sternberg will be there to greet him. Hmmmm. And they have a scheduled joint media session. Hmmmmmmmmm.

    Commissioner Rob Manfred isn’t expected to say anything definitive about the Rays’ stadium situation when he visits the team today.
  2. Mayor Rick Kriseman endorsed by another police union


    ST. PETERSBURG — Mayor Rick Kriseman is already backed by the city's largest police union, the Suncoast Police Benevolent Association.

    Mayor Rick Kriseman has secured another police union endorsement
  3. Drinking alcohol on St. Pete Beach beaches now allowed — for hotel guests only

    Local Government

    ST. PETE BEACH — Guests at gulf-front hotels here can now drink alcoholic beverages in permitted hotel beach cabana areas.

    Guests at the Don CeSar Hotel relax Tuesday on St. Pete Beach. That night, the City Commission unanimously passed an ordinance to allow hotel guests to drink alcohol in permitted beach areas.
  4. Man found floating in 'Cotee River in New Port Richey

    Public Safety

    NEW PORT RICHEY — A body was found floating in the Pithlachascotee River on Tuesday morning, police said.

  5. More than 13,000 fact-checks later, PolitiFact celebrates 10-year mark


    ST. PETERSBURG — Bill Adair still remembers the moment when he realized his idea to fact-check politicians could turn into something big.

    From left, Aaron Sharockman, PolitiFact executive director, introduces a panel featuring Angie Holan, PolitiFact editor; PolitiFact founder Bill Adair; and Neil Brown, Tampa Bay Times editor and vice president, at the Poynter Institute on Tuesday.