You're considering going back to school, but you're not sure you can afford it right now. Before you write off this idea - and your future - take a look at some of the scholarships that are available just for single parents.
Begin Your Search by Applying for Federal Student Aid
This is extremely important. Some of the scholarships available to single parents stipulate that you must have applied for a Federal Pell Grant. You do that by filling out the FAFSA application. Additionally, this process may lead you to other available sources of funding. The application takes some time, but it is well worth your effort, and it is the first thing you should do when applying for a scholarship.
Set Up Your Federal Pin Number Through the Department of Education
In order to process your FAFSA application, you'll also need to register for a "Personal Identification Number" through the U.S. Department of Education. You can use this number each year to re-apply for federal aid.
Search for Scholarship Programs Specifically Geared Toward Single Parents
Next, look for scholarship programs geared toward single moms and dads. Begin with the following lists of single parent scholarships:
Use an Online Database to Search for Scholarships
FastWeb.com is a well-known and respected searchable database where you can find scholarships in your area that meet your specific criteria. After completing the FAFSA application and searching for scholarships created just for single parents, this is the next thing you should do.
Contact Every Community College, College, and University in Your Area
Make a list of the schools in your area. Visit each of their web sites and search for "Financial Aid" and "Scholarships." Many schools offer programs just for single parents that may not be widely publicized. In addition to funding your tuition, some of these programs include childcare and additional programs.