Financial Aid Night offers college advice

Shawnee Mission students were able to receive information about paying for college at Financial Aid Night on Nov. 18.

The cost of education is continuing to rise, and according to, tuition and fees increased 14.1 percent for public four-year institutions and 6 percent for private schools in 2009.

Financial Aid Night gives students an opportunity to hear advice about securing monetary support for post-secondary education. It also explains the difference between a grant scholarship, a loan and work study programs and answers any questions that students may have. The main speaker was Perry Diehm, a financial aid officer at Mid America Nazarene University.

“ is an opportunity for parents of juniors and seniors to hear an overview of what aid the government will provide, what different types of aid are out there and how to fill out different financial aid forms,” counselor Angelo Giacalone said.

Financial Aid Night was very successful this year with over 200 people attending. Giacalone is considering holding another seminar in February. If another event is held later this year, he expects financial aid officers from multiple local universities to attend.

Ways to pay for college:

Scholarships-A grant of financial aid awarded to students usually on a merit basis. Scholarships do not have to be repaid.

Student Loans-Offered to students by the government and private agencies to assist in payment of the costs of professional education. Loans must be paid back by students.

Grants-Financial aid provided by government agencies or private organizations that does not need to be repaid.

Work Study-Part-time employment programs for undergraduates and graduates to help with college expenses.

-Rachel Ferencz