Grants Financing your Education - Grants
Grants are called gift aid because they do not have to be repaid. Sources of grants include federal, state, private and institutional funds. Most grants are based on financial need, so students must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. With the exception of the Alumni Grant, students are considered after submitting the FAFSA and informed about grant awards in the financial aid notification from Point Park.
The Federal Pell Grant program provides assistance to students who demonstrate financial need according to economic criteria and requirements established by the federal government. Pell Grants are awarded only to undergraduate students who have not earned bachelor's degrees or professional degrees. Students may be eligible for full-time, three-quarter time, half-time, or less than half-time credit load. Pell Grant assistance may be limited for less than half-time study.
The Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant is a federal need-based grant reserved for undergraduate students with the lowest expected family contributions who are also eligible for the Federal Pell Grant. Students are considered based on the FAFSA and meeting the annual deadline to submit the FAFSA.
Through the College Cost Reduction and Access Act of 2007, Congress created the Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education (TEACH) Grant Program that provides grants of up to $4,000 per year to students who intend to teach in a public or private elementary or secondary school that serves students from low-income families.
Due to Sequestration:
- Any TEACH Grants first disbursed on or after October 1, 2016 and before October 1, 2017 are subject to a 6.9% reduction. This means that the maximum TEACH Grant is $3,724 or $1,862 per term.
IMPORTANT: If you fail to complete this service obligation, all amounts of TEACH Grants that you received will be converted to a Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan with interest accruing retroactively from the date the grant was disbursed. Review complete details and restrictions.
Student Eligibility Requirements
To receive a TEACH Grant at Point Park, you must meet the following criteria:
- Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), although you do not have to demonstrate financial need.
- Be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen.
- Be enrolled in one of Point Park’s TEACH Grant-eligible programs.
- Meet certain academic achievement requirements (generally, scoring above the 75th percentile on a college admissions test or maintaining a cumulative GPA of at least 3.25).
- Complete TEACH Grant Initial and Subsequent Counseling which is required by the U.S. Department of Education.
- Sign a TEACH Grant Agreement to Serve and Promise to Pay each year with the U.S. Department of Education.
- Complete the Graduate Application for Federal TEACH Grant.
In exchange for receiving a TEACH Grant, you must:
- Agree to serve as a full-time teacher in a high-need field in a public or private elementary or secondary school that serves low-income students.
- As a recipient of a TEACH Grant, you must teach for at least four academic years within eight calendar years of completing the program of study for which you received a TEACH Grant.
- IMPORTANT: If you fail to complete this service obligation, all amounts of TEACH Grants that you received will be converted to a Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan. You must then repay this loan to the U.S. Department of Education. You will be charged interest from the date the grant(s) was disbursed.
Point Park's TEACH-Eligible Programs
Based on High-Need Fields Specified in TEACH Grant Regulations, the following have been identified as programs that are eligible for the TEACH grant at Point Park:
- M.A. Curriculum and Instruction / Reading Specialist Concentration
- M.Ed. in Special Education PreK-12 (for non-certified teachers seeking initial teaching certification)
- M.A. in Special Education PreK-12
Schools Serving Low-Income Students
Schools serving low-income students include any elementary or secondary school that is listed in the Department of Education's Annual Directory of Designated Low-Income Schools for Teacher Cancellation Benefits.
TEACH Grant Agreement to Serve
Each year that you receive a TEACH Grant, you must sign a TEACH Grant Agreement to Serve and complete a new TEACH Grant Entrance Counseling . The TEACH Grant Agreement to Serve specifies 1) the conditions under which the grant will be awarded, 2) the teaching service requirements, and 3) includes an acknowledgment that you understand that you must repay the grant as a Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan, with interest accruing from the date the grant funds were disbursed if you do not meet the teaching service requirements. Specifically, the TEACH Grant Agreement to Serve will require the following:
- For each TEACH Grant-eligible program for which you received TEACH Grant funds, you must serve as a full-time teacher for a total of at least four academic years within eight calendar years after you completed or withdrew from the academic program for which you received the TEACH Grant.
- You must perform the teaching service as a highly-qualified teacher at a low-income school. The term highly-qualified teacher is defined in section 9101(23) of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 or in section 602(10) of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act.
- Your teaching service must be in a high-need field.
- You must comply with any other requirements that the Department of Education determines to be necessary.
- If you do not complete the required teaching service obligation, TEACH Grant funds you received will be converted to a Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan that you must repay, with interest charged from the date of each TEACH Grant disbursement.
This page provides a summary of the TEACH Grant Program based on the College Cost Reduction and Access Act of 2007. The information on this page is subject to change and is not binding on the Department of Education or Point Park University.
Visit the federal TEACH Grant website to learn more.
The Pennsylvania State Grant is a resource, funded by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, available to state residents who meet eligibility requirements and the application deadline (May 1 for Fall start). Students are eligible to receive either full-time (12+ credits) or part-time (6-11credits) awards for the equivalent of four full-time semesters. Part-time students who receive 100% corporate reimbursement have limited eligibility for the Pennsylvania State Grant.
To apply for a State Grant when you complete the FAFSA
You can complete the Pennsylvania State Grant Form online directly from your FAFSA confirmation page. Look for the link that reads "Optional Feature-Start your state application-Click here if you want to apply for Pennsylvania state-based financial aid."
To apply for a State Grant after you've completed the FAFSA
If you've already submitted your FAFSA online and missed the direct link, you may need to wait 24-48 hours before you can complete the State Grant Form online. You will receive an email directing you to the American Education Services website to complete the State Grant Form.
Most renewal students do not have to complete the State Grant Form. For more information, visit the PHEAA website. Out-of-state students may be eligible for similar grants from their states. Students should check with their appropriate state agency.
All students who complete FAFSA are considered for the Point Park University Grant. The maximum award can be up to $10,000 per academic year. The award and the amount of the award are determined based upon the following:
- Demonstrated financial need
- Level of financial need and available funds
- The Alumni Grant provides a $30/credit discount on most on-campus undergraduate courses at Point Park for eligible graduates. It is the responsibility of the alumnus to request this discount prior to starting course work.
- Undergraduate and graduate alumni pursuing most master's degrees are eligible for a 25% discount on tuition. This discount does not apply to Master’s in Education Programs or Doctoral programs.
Point Park University offers grants to part-time students who show financial need beyond that which other forms of gift aid assistance can cover. The amount of the grant is determined based on the student's financial need and enrollment status.
Part-time students taking 6-8 credits can receive up to $500 per semester; 9-11 credits can receive up to $750 per semester; 12+ credits can receive up to $750 per semester. These grants are available in fall, spring, and summer terms.
Students are considered for this assistance after filing the FAFSA. Students who receive employer reimbursement are NOT eligible for Part-time Grants.
Point Park University has established a transfer grant program for students from:
- Community College of Allegheny County
- Community College of Beaver County
- Butler County Community College
- Westmoreland County Community College
Community College Grants are available to students who have earned an associate degrees or 60 transferable credits and want to continue their education at Point Park University. Eligible transfer students accepted to Point Park on a part-time basis will receive $90 per credit until completion of 60 credits. Students receiving Community College Grants may also be eligible for other merit-based and need-based financial aid. Students who receive corporate reimbursement are not eligible for the Community College Grant.
Point Park offers graduate students the opportunity to be considered for Graduate Grants. Up to $400 per term is available for graduate students with financial need who are taking 9-12 credits. Up to $200 per term is available for graduate students with financial need who are taking 6-8 credits per term. Students must complete the FAFSA for consideration. This discount does not apply to Master’s in Education Programs or Doctoral programs.
Point Park's financial services professionals are here to help. Contact us.