Educational Consumer Tips

Financial Aid & Scholarship Companies

Author: Better Business Bureau

Financial aid and scholarship companies advertise on TV, radio,
and by direct mail. These companies usually offer lists of
possible financial aid sources which could include grants from
government agencies or foundations and scholarship sources. Some of these companies charge a fee which may range from $20 to several hundred dollars.

Generally, these companies offer assistance to the prospective
student or financial aid seeker by providing a list of potential
aid sources tailored to the situation in reference to academic
qualifications, test scores and/or economic status. After buying
a list from these companies, it is the student's responsibility
to contact the organizations on the list, determine that
organization's requirements for granting financial aid, and to
complete the application process.

Prospective students should understand that financial aid and
scholarship companies normally do not have the authority to
approve or disapprove financial aid applications although they
may provide you with information on those sources which seem to
fit your particular situation.

There are thousands of sources of financial aid through
scholarship, grants, loans, and many schools also offer
work-study programs. Federal and state governments may have
programs designed to assist students in completing their
education. There may also be private grants from individuals,
foundations and corporations available for study in a particular

Information on many of these sources is available from school
guidance counselors, college financial aid offices and in the
reference section of your local library. A Financial Aid
company may save you time by locating the sources most likely to
fit your needs, without having to research all of the available
choices yourself. Many of these companies were started by
former educators who know the ins and outs of the financial aid

Ask the BBB for our free tips booklet on Financial Aid for