How Do I Pay for College? - Geneva College, a Christian College in Pennsylvania (PA)

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Financial Aid
May 13, 2016

How Do I Pay for College?

Geneva offers a variety of scholarships and grants to incoming first-year students and transferring students. But what you might not know is that there are more ways to pay for college than just with the money that Geneva can offer to you in a grant or a scholarship!

What’s the difference between a scholarship, a grant and a loan?


Scholarships are, by definition, “a grant of payment made to support a student’s education, awarded on the basis of academic or other achievement” (Merriam-Webster Dictionary). In Geneva’s case, students are awarded a scholarship based on a combination of their SAT/ACT scores and high school grades. Students can be awarded $7,500-$15,000 per year! Here’s a rundown of the scholarships for incoming first-year students.

Pro Christo Scholarship  

$60,000 ($15,000 per year) 

Founders Scholarship  

$54,000 ($13,500 per year) 

Alumni Scholarship 

$48,000 ($12,000 per year) 

Northwood Award  

$30,000 ($7,500 per year)

These scholarships can help you make college possible, but it gets better. Geneva’s Institutional Advancement Department works tirelessly to maintain relationships with alumni of Geneva who have graciously donated funds in the form of grants to students who show financial need.


Grants are defined as a sum of money given by an organization, or person, for a particular purpose. At Geneva, Alumni and other donors grant money to be given to students for the furtherance of their education. These benefactors see the work being done at Geneva  to be profitable so they invest in the future of the students who fill her classrooms in order to continue the tradition and mission of faithful and fruitful service to Christ and Country.

What’s really cool is that Geneva hosts a Scholarship Recognition Dinner every year in honor of the benefactors who give to make Geneva the amazing college it continues to be. Students have the opportunity to meet their benefactor and thank them for their support and investment. Also, the food is pretty bangin..


Unless you’re paying $35,450 out of your pockets every year for tuition, room and board, you can file for the FAFSA which is the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. Basically, you fill out this application and the government decides if you are eligible to receive student financial aid. Depending on your eligibility, you might receive money from the government that you have to eventually pay back. These are called loans. There are two types of loans: Subsidized and Unsubsidized.

  • Subsidized loans are the best kind because the government pays for all of the extra interest that might accrue from the time you take the loan out to when you pay it all off.
  • Unsubsidized loans are loans that start accruing interest right when you take them out. The government doesn’t pay for the interest on these loans, so it’s always best to pay these ones off as quickly as you can.

Whether subsidized or unsubsidized, loans are a helpful way of paying for college. Just remember that loans need to be paid back so it is best to be careful with how many loans you take out! Otherwise you’ll be eating Ramen and PB&J’s for the next 15 years.

Outside scholarships

Most people don’t take advantage of outside scholarships as much as they could. There is actually a lot of free money out there. You just have to find it! Here are a few places where you can look.

  • Local Scholarships are funds that are available to students seeking higher education sponsored by various local organizations. Libraries, churches, banks and sometimes even locally owned businesses offer scholarships to students who apply for them.
  • National Scholarships are typically easier to find because they are open to a broader range of people to apply to them. For example, the Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation, the Gates Millennium Scholars, the National Merit Scholarship Corporation, and Intel Science Talent Search are all amazing scholarships to apply for.

All scholarships have a catch. And here it is: you have to seek them out. Taking the time to apply can seem mundane, but I can guarantee that it will be worth the time and your efforts will pay off in the end. Literally.


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