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Financial Assistance for Online Learners, Weekend University and Graduate Certificate Students
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Financial Assistance for Online Learners, Weekend University and Graduate Certificate Students

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  1. Financial Assistance for Online Learners, Weekend University and Graduate Certificate Students July 15, 2010

  2. Funding for Weekend University, Online Learners and Graduate Certificate Students As a Weekend University student pursuing an undergraduate or graduate program, you can apply for federal financial aid including: • Federal Financial aid and private loans to assist in the cost of your education (undergraduate and graduate students / full- and part-time) • Scholarships are available from several sources including private funders • NJIT offers merit-based scholarships for undergraduate NJ residents as well as out-of-state residents • Grants (for undergraduate students) • Tax credits

  3. Funding your education: Scholarships • There are also a wide variety of outside scholarship opportunities available for adult learners • Merit-Based Scholarships • NJIT connects you with hundreds of awards based on your academic achievements, financial need, state residency, and more. Based on your records and FAFSA, you’ll automatically be considered for every award for which you are eligible

  4. Graduate Students studying through Weekend University, Online or on Campus • Students pursuing a graduate degree or Certificate are eligible to receive Federal Student Loans. • The student loan amount is determined after the student completes the FAFSA application at fafsa.ed.gov.

  5. Funding your education: Grants Need based awards are: • Federal Pell Grant ($976-$5,350) • Educational Opportunity Fund ($1,150 commuters and $1400 for on-campus residents) • Tuition Aid Grant ($2,236-$10,500) • Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant

  6. Educational Loans • Educational loans have low interest rates • Most of them let you wait until you leave school to start making payments • When you do start re-payment, you’ll get tax breaks on the interest • They count as good debt and can actually help your credit rating

  7. Types of Educational Loans • Some loans that are offered by NJIT in conjunction with the Federal Government are: • Federal Direct Loans • Federal Plus Loans • Graduate Plus Loans • Perkins Loan • Private loans are issued by various lenders all over the country

  8. Educational Tax Advantages • Many adult learners don’t realize they could also qualify for U.S. income tax credits depending on income • Tax credits help pay for college by reducing federal income tax (dollar for dollar) or reducing Adjusted Gross Income (AGI)

  9. Tax Credits (www.irs.gov) • LifeTime Learning tax credit - claimed for graduate school or for a single post-high-school class • Is worth up to $2,000 • The credit is 20% of the first $10,000 of qualifying costs • Phase-outs are for Adjusted Gross Incomes between $50,000 to $60,000 for tax returns filed as “single,” and from $100,000 to $120,000 for “joint” returns

  10. Tax Credits • American Opportunity Tax credit (Hope College Credit) - Revised for 2010 tax year under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (“federal stimulus bill”) • Federal income tax is reduced dollar for dollar if you spend $4000 toward education (tuition, books, supplies) • Tax credit is $2,500 for each qualifying college student in a family • All four years of post-high-school education can be claimed (previously it was only the first two years) • For those filing “Single,” qualifying incomes go as high as $90,000; and for taxpayers filing jointly, the thresholds go up to $180,000 • In addition, for qualifying taxpayers (based on AGI) up to 40% of the credit (as much as $1,000) can be paid as a tax refund

  11. Other sources of Financial Assistance • Students who are unemployed may be eligible for GRANTS for education through the county One-Stop Career Centers. Information can be reviewed at lwd.dol.state.nj.us/labor/wfprep/aidgrant/Financial_index.html • Veterans and Military personnel received education benefits through the government Tuition Assistance (TA) Program:www.military.com/education/content/money-for-school/tuition-assistance-ta-program-overview.html

  12. Links and Reference Materials Additional information about the types of financial options for eligible students: www.njit.edu/financialaid/typesofaid/Weekenders.php and adultlearner.njit.edu/costs/ Also pick up a copy of the NJIT Frequently Asked Questions Helping Adults Pay for an NJIT Education