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Learning to fly requires focus, dedication, and money. For most students, paying for flight training is a major challenge. It is important that you are serious about becoming a pilot, so you don’t waste your money and time.

This channel will help you understand the financial aid process and identify the various sources of aid that can help you pay for flight training. We will also refer to the Pay for School channel that will provide you with detailed information on certain topics.

Here are a few steps you can follow to help you search and apply for financial aid:

Step 1: Financial Aid Basics (Summary)
Step 2: Aviation Scholarships
Step 3: Sources of Financial Aid
Step 4: Applying for a scholarship

Step 1: Financial Aid Basics (Summary)
There are a variety of financial aid programs designed to help students pay for flight training at accredited flight schools. Before you start searching and applying for financial aid, it is important that you learn as much as you can about the basics of financial aid and how the financial aid process works. The more you know, the better.

Financial aid makes a higher education possible for almost every student. Its purpose is to help you and your parent(s) pay for school expenses and flight training costs. Financial aid is awarded in the form of scholarships, grants, work-study, and educational loans.

Financial aid is usually awarded to students based on financial need (aka Need-Based Aid). However, financial aid is also awarded to students based on their merit or academic achievements (aka Merit-Based Aid), which is not based on financial need. Merit-based aid is usually awarded to students based on their test scores, gender, field of study, ethnicity, membership, disability impairments, athletic or artistic talents, religious affiliation, or other achievements stated by the scholarship providers.

To be considered for most financial aid based on need (i.e. federal aid, state aid, intuitional aid, and some private scholarships) you must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Learn more about financial aid, how to apply, FAFSA, and other related topics, visit the Pay for School: Step 1: Financial Aid Basics.

Step 2: Aviation Scholarships
There are a few aviation foundations, associations, institutions, organizations, clubs, and individuals that offer scholarships to students pursuing a career in the field of aviation. Most scholarships are not well publicized. AvScholars.com has gathered a temporary listing of aviation scholarships for you to browse.

Step 3: Sources of Financial Aid
Colleges, universities, and accredited flight schools may offer various financial aid programs (such as federal, state, and intuitional aid) to eligible students attending their school. The first step towards searching and applying for financial aid is to meet with a financial aid counselor of the school you plan to or currently attend.

Provided below is a list of sources that may be available to you. For additional sources of financial aid, visit Pay for School Step 3: Sources of Financial Aid.

Financial aid is available from many sources:
Federal Government
ROTC Scholarships
Military Service Academies
VA Benefits
Alternative (Private) Loans

Step 4: Applying for a scholarship
Applying for a scholarship involves several steps. Visit Pay for School - Step 4: Completing the Application, this step will help you with all phases of completing and submitting your scholarship application.


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