Dear Scholarship Guru,
I am 24 years old and I want to return to college. I studied for two years at a four-year undergraduate college. Then I transferred to a two-year college and had a horrible semester during the spring of 2002 because I was having some very difficult personal problems.
My overall GPA is somewhere around 1.5 and the two-year college would not let me return or grant me financial aid even after appealing and writing a letter about my personal issues. I am afraid that no other institution will give me a chance to redeem myself. Can you help me/give me some direction? Thanks.
Many students like you have had personal problems that have kept them out of school for a while. Often, being placed on financial aid suspension is a one-year proposition. Federal law requires that schools place that restriction on lower performing students. However, you can return at any time after the suspension is complete and reapply for assistance. And that suspension only applies to that school in particular, and not to other schools you may wish to attend.
While it may be difficult, you should realize that you can still attend school, but would pay the tuition out of your own pocket. Rebuilding your GPA on a part-time basis is a way to earn your financial aid back, as well as work towards your ultimate degree. Don’t be afraid to research the possibilities.
Go back to your financial aid officer and explore further options. If you are now living in a different area, you may be able to attend a new school and receive financial aid.
I hope that we have been able to help. If you have any questions, feel free to email again. And be sure to read YOUNG MONEY or visit youngmoney.com for more financial aid advice.
Jose Vazquez, a marketing major at Western Illinois University, has been awarded 27 scholarships, amassing more than $100,000 in aid to date. He is the author of the book "Free Cash For College: The Everyday Students Guide To Financial Aid," available at vazquezmedia.com.
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