Financial Aid

Paying for Post-Secondary Education

fin aid

There are four main sources of financial aid that we recommend every family check out:

  1. Federal Student Aid

    The United States Department of Education can provide assistance for families paying for college. Learn more about ALL of the opportunities at This website will link families to complete the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid), which should be done after October 1 of the student's senior year and every year of college after that. The student and parent complete the FAFSA together.  It is important that the FAFSA is submitted as soon as possible, even if the family must estimate their income before receiving all of their tax information.  Do not wait or the money may be gone!! Families may find it useful to read this "Making Sense of the FAFSA" guide.

  2. State Financial Aid

    The Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency (PHEAA) also provides financial assistance to college students who are residents of PA. Go to to apply for Pennsylvania State Grants. This should be done immediately after completing the FAFSA.  This private website also lists many scholarships that are offered at colleges within Pennsylvania, so it may also be worth checking out.  Check out the Pennsylvania Student Aid Guide, too -- and this recent mailing from PHEAA: Funding Your Future Brochure.pdf.

  3. The Post-Secondary Institution that you are choosing to attend (your college, university, or technical school)

    The Financial Aid Office of the college where the student will attend is also an excellent source of financial assistance and information. Students and families are encouraged to contact the FAOs of every college that they are considering to find out about their specific scholarships and procedures.  Please note that some colleges will also ask students to submit a CSS/Financial Aid PROFILE to apply for scholarships. 


  4. Private Organizations

    Many companies and civic organizations offer scholarships to individuals based on a variety of qualifying factors.  It does take extra time and effort for students to find these scholarships and complete the applications, but all of this effort usually does PAY OFF for students!    

To find some of these scholarships,

students should check out

 CYHS Scholarship List.

Paper copies of this list can also be found in the Counseling Office. Because this list is updated weekly and many scholarships do not become available until winter, students are encouraged to check the list regularly to see what scholarships have been added.  Be sure to pay close attention to the deadlines listed.  If letters of recommendation or transcripts are needed for a scholarship application, students should be sure to allow the Counseling Office ten days prior to the due date for processing.  

piggy bank

Students should also look for private scholarships by visiting any of these websites:

Want to Predict Your Financial Aid?

If you're interested in finding out how much federal financial aid you are LIKELY to qualify for, visit This can be done by families at any time, so go ahead and try it!

Another resource to do this is

Worried About Taking Out Student Loans?

Check out My Smart Borrowing for wise advice about how to make sure that your student loan debt will not be unmanageable in adulthood!

This website may also be helpful to those who are borrowing money for their college education:

Five Financial Aid Tips That Help You Choose The Right College

Published 4/20/2015 by The Fiscal Times:

College On A Budget

This website may be a good resource for many families: