Whether it’s to finish off a college education, to pursue a graduate degree in order to further a career or to change careers entirely, adult grants are available and awarded to non-traditional students in order encourage that anxiety-inciting return to school. The common problem for most adults that want to return to school: they’ve finally made and have the time and other resources to finally make that return to school but now, the financial resources aren’t quite there. Loans aren’t a possibility. Having not been in school for years puts scholarships out of reach. And then there are adult grants.
Adult grants are available to those that haven’t been in school for a few years and have started families and worked since they were last in school. Various government agencies recognize that this is a common scenario and to address the issue, agencies have as a part of their regular budget and fiscal plan, allotted funds dedicated to adult grants.
In 2002, the Federal government aimed to clarify and streamline the searching of its various directories of varied agencies’ grants. The directories were consolidated and centralized onto one website, grants.gov. The website’s a part of the E-Grants Initiative and on the site, you can easily search for a number of adult grants.
Aside from government agencies, businesses award adult grants as well. The requirements of adult grants awarded by businesses differ in that:
• A bare minimum academic performance will be required in order to continue receiving the grant
• The business may require you to commit to some time to the company after graduation
Adult grants awarded by businesses typically relate to the industry that the company is in. Technology businesses especially, such as Intel and Microsoft, will reward grants to promising students that show huge potential. Grants awarded by businesses are also common in the health and medical sciences. Companies such as Genentech, Pfizer and Aventis all disburse educational adult grants on an annual basis.
Aside from businesses and government entities, non-profit organizations, including universities themselves, disburse millions in U.S. dollars in adult grants every year. Grants from universities are the most convenient for non-traditional and expectantly, these are the grants that are perhaps the most competitive to apply for. As is the case with college applications, when it comes to adult grants from the university itself, applying early will improve your chances considerably. In terms of grants from charitable organizations, a common approach to researching for these is to look up organizations that you connect with personally. You might start with something in your background, like your heritage. Many foundations’ missions are to promote particular heritages and a way of doing this is through a grant program that they offer to the community. Cultural or even a disability that you might have, might lead you to an organization that you connect with on a personal level and that issues the sort of adult grant that you need to pursue your education.