In today’s society, divorce is a fact of many people’s lives. Unfortunately, that leaves a lot of families fractured and one income short of where they were when they were married. For single parents who are trying to make a better life for themselves and their children, going back to school may be the best step to a brighter future.

Being a single parent means shouldering the responsibility for financial decisions on your own. Sometimes you may have to choose what you spend your money on. If the budget is tight, even something as important as a college education can fall under the category of a luxury expense. Higher education, though, isn’t a luxury. It’s a necessity in today’s tough job market.

Apply right now for free: Scholarships for Moms and Scholarships for Dads

If you need help paying for school as a single parent, you should take the time to look into grant money that is available for single parents. It’s important that you do your research, because the grant process, while not overly complicated, does rely on detailed information from you. If you do your homework, you may be able to start school sooner than you thought, and be receiving grant money in just a few short months if you qualify.

First, you need to understand what a grant is. A grant is basically a gift of money to help with educational expenses, even sometimes including living expenses. Grants don’t have to be paid back, so they are much better tools than loans for funding your education if you qualify for them.

It is very common for grant awards to be based solely on financial need, so those applicants who need them the most will be awarded the highest amounts. Other grants may be awarded based on academic achievement or other qualifications the grantor determines.

Grants are available from a wide number of sources, but often the first source for many students is the federal government. The government offers many different grants to students; the most well known is the Pell Grant. When a student completes and submits a FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid), their information will be analyzed and determined to be eligible or not for grant money. Many other federal grants rely on the information in your FAFSA application, so make sure to complete it and submit it well within the deadline.

Various departments of the government offer grants to people who are interested in entering that particular field of work or government agency. For example, the Department of Education offers a variety of programs to students who are interested in teaching students from low-income areas and homes. The National Science Foundation also offers money to educational institutions to fund various grants and scholarships that focus on science education. The best way to get government grant money is to be in contact with your financial aid office once you fill out your FAFSA. Check various government agency websites for grant applications and opportunities, and apply to as many of them as you think you may be eligible for.

Another avenue of grant money is through corporate America. There are hundreds of grant opportunities available from companies and corporations for students who may be interested in entering a particular field of work. Students who know what they want to study may find a large number of grants in their particular field. There are also numerous grants available for students based on their race, gender, family situation, or cultural or ethnic background. As always, the best place to start is your financial aid office; they can help you get started, but a lot of the legwork you will have to conduct on your own.

**Update** Did you know you can get a $ 10,000 scholarship just for registering?

Apply right now for free: Scholarships for Moms

You must be at least 18.

**Update** Did you know you can get a ,000 scholarship just for registering?

Apply right now for free: Scholarships for Moms and Scholarships for Dads

You must be at least 18.

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