"Whether you are rich or poor, do the FAFSA. It costs nothing and there's a good chance it will make at least a dent in your needs. It makes a crater in mine. Even if you are not prone to academics, there are other areas in which to demonstrate your intelligence. There are scholarships out there for the most random things, some of which do not include financial need as a factor.
"It also helps to have a high SAT score. I only took the test once, but you should take it as many times as you need to until you get a score you are satisfied with. It will pay off."
- Susan Carlson, junior theatre major
"Like most high school students, I didn't know how paying for college was going to happen. My family usually makes only enough money to pay bills and buy groceries with a little extra money to spend occasionally. Luckily, my school had a career center where I could search in a big drawer filled with scholarship applications to complete. In the end, I received many of the small local scholarships I applied for, which helped in the long run; FAFSA also offered me a good amount of money. Meeting with your school counselor is a great way to find out information about financial aid for college if a career center or student resource center isn't available at your school.
"George Fox offers plenty of financial aid, ranging from merit scholarships, need-based grants, multicultural scholarships, and plenty more. The merit scholarship helps the most. It rewards you a big chunk of financial support based off of your high school GPA and SAT/ACT scores.
"Also, registering for the Scholarship Competition Fox has each year is a must. Your workplace or your parents' workplace might sometimes be willing to assist you in paying for higher education. All in all, I'm paying nearly the same here at Fox that I would be at a state school or even close to a community college."
- Weldin Yanes, junior, engineering major
"The search for scholarships to help finance tuition can be a real challenge, but I encourage you to at least try; you never know when you are going to be successful. Having good grades, volunteering and participating in extracurricular activities help you to stand out on scholarship applications. Many donors want to know that you are a student who uses your talents to help others.
"In my time at George Fox I have frequently interacted with the financial aid counselors. The heart that they have for students has never failed to impress me, and they are always very welcoming and seem to genuinely care about students personally. They are willing to take the time to walk students through the financial aid process and to help them find answers to their questions."
- Hilary Sarjent, 2012 graduate with BS in business administration
"When I started my freshman year at George Fox, I knew coming up with the money to pay for it would be difficult. I also knew that God would provide because it was where he wanted me to be. It took a lot of diligence on my part researching and applying for any and every scholarship I could find that helped me get through. It was a combination of scholarships from George Fox, both academic and need based, as well as federal grants and federal loans that funded my education. In the end, I was able to avoid taking out any private loans or paying out of pocket.
"For students just starting out, I would encourage you to get to know your financial aid counselor. They are the ones that can help find you scholarships, as well as help you know where to look. Your financial aid counselor can help you make good decisions about loans as well. Most importantly, apply for scholarships! It takes a lot of time and effort, but it can pay off in the long run. Some good places to start looking are fastweb.com and www.osac.state.or.us for Oregon residents. You should even check with banks or credit unions. Put the time and effort into finding them and it can make all the difference."
- Johanna Schweitzer, 2011 graduate with BA in English and history