Costs & Finances

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Three things you need to know about college costs

Wondering how you’re going to pay for college may be one of your biggest concerns, so you need information and you need it early in the search process. Regardless of whether you are an undergraduate or graduate student, the availability of aid or funding can have a big impact on your college choice.

Lesson 1: Start early and learn everything you can

Consider holding a family meeting to look at what it really costs to attend college and talk openly about financial options and how your family can manage costs. Kick off the meeting by reviewing Virginia Tech’s cost of attendance and by using the Net Price Calculator to estimate your costs, as well as possible grant and scholarship aid.

Lesson 2: The FAFSA is available October 1—submit yours ASAP

The process and timeline for completing the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) has recently changed. The FAFSA is now available beginning October 1, and Virginia Tech’s priority deadline is January 15. This means that you need to be applying for aid at the same time you are applying for college, so learn the steps for applying for financial aid before your senior year.

Lesson 3: Scholarships have deadlines—don’t miss them

You also need to learn about the scholarship process before your senior year. There are university, CNRE, and private scholarships — and they all have different deadlines and requirements. Don’t miss out on possible awards because you didn’t plan ahead!

Cost is important, and so is return on investment



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Getting funding for a graduate degree

If your academic path is leading you toward a graduate degree, it’s also important to learn about funding possibilities. For some programs, you need to secure funding before you can be considered for admission.

Your first step should be contacting the graduate program coordinator in your area of study. Then check out the following resources: