Here’s a Quick Primer on Applying for Oregon Financial Aid
Salem, OR – The Higher Education Coordinating Commission’s Office of Student Access and Completion (OSAC) has opened the OSAC Scholarship Application for the 2022-2023 academic year. As of November 1, 2021, students can now apply for OSAC Scholarships, the Oregon Promise Grant, the Oregon Child Care Grant, and even more state grant programs through the deadline of March 1, 2022 at 5pm.
OSAC administers more than $130 million in state-funded grants and privately-funded scholarships to help Oregon students meet their college expenses. New and current postsecondary education students can find links to the grant and scholarship applications at OregonStudentAid.gov.
OSAC SCHOLARSHIPS: OSAC has made accessing scholarships easy for Oregon students with its catalog of more than 600 privately-funded scholarships. Students can apply for up to 40 scholarships through a single online application. Scholarship funds are available for graduating high school seniors; undergraduate and graduate college students; GED® students; undocumented and Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) students; homeschooled students; community college and vocational school students; adult learners returning to school; and more. Students must apply online at OregonStudentAid.gov and submit a completed OSAC scholarship application and all other required materials by the final deadline of March 1, 2022 at 5:00 p.m. (PST). Students who submit their applications by February 15, 2022 at 5:00 p.m. may be entered in a drawing to win a $1,000 OSAC Early Bird scholarship.
DETERMINING NEED – FAFSA or ORSAA: Many scholarships and most grants require completion of either a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or Oregon Student Aid Application (ORSAA). Every new and returning student must complete one of these two applications to be considered for state and/or federal financial aid, including loans. Most students applying for aid complete the FAFSA to determine their state and federal financial aid eligibility. Students with undocumented status, including those with Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) status, instead fill out the ORSAA—Oregon’s alternative to the FAFSA. The information provided on the FAFSA or the ORSAA will determine students’ eligibility for the Oregon Promise, the Oregon Opportunity Grant, and numerous scholarships. Information provided on the ORSAA is secure and confidential, and shared only with Oregon colleges and universities that students list on the ORSAA.
OREGON OPPORTUNITY GRANT: The Oregon Opportunity Grant is Oregon’s largest state-funded, need-based grant program. The grant supports low-income students (both recent high school graduates and adult learners) pursuing undergraduate degrees at eligible public and private colleges and universities. Oregon Opportunity Grants are awarded until funds are exhausted, so students should complete either the FAFSA or ORSAA as soon as possible to be automatically considered for the grant for 2021-22.
OREGON PROMISE: Students receiving their high school diploma or GED® equivalent in the near future, as well as recent graduates, may be eligible for the Oregon Promise Grant. Oregon Promise helps students pay for tuition at any Oregon community college. Most students must apply for Oregon Promise during their senior year or immediately after GED® test completion (see full Oregon Promise deadlines). Students must meet minimum GPA requirements and enroll in a community college no later than six months after graduation. Interested students must complete an Oregon Promise application and submit a FAFSA or ORSAA by their designated deadline. Depending on program funding, awards may be limited to those under a certain Estimated Family Contribution (EFC) threshold.
ADDITIONAL GRANTS: OSAC also administers grants for special populations including current and former foster youth (Oregon Chafee Education and Training Grant), current members of the Oregon National Guard (Oregon National Guard State Tuition Assistance), dependents of deceased or disabled public safety officers (DDPSO), and students raising children while taking college courses (Student Child Care Grant).
OSAC strongly encourages students to apply for financial aid as soon as possible to maximize their opportunities to be awarded. If students have any questions about financial aid, they can reach out to OSAC via [email protected] Answers to Frequently Asked Questions can also be found at OregonStudentAid.gov.
The State of Oregon’s Higher Education Coordinating Commission (HECC) envisions a future in which all Oregonians—and especially those whom our systems have underserved and marginalized—benefit from the transformational power of high-quality postsecondary education and training. For more information, go to www.Oregon.gov/HigherEd