The Federal Pell Grant is a post-secondary education federal grant program sponsored by the U.S. Department of Education. These types of grants are awarded based on a financial need formula that is determined by the U.S. Congress via the FAFSA application.
One of the great benefits of a Federal Pell Grant is that the funds do not need to be repaid. They are usually awarded to undergraduate students who have not earned a bachelor’s or any other type of professional degree. In this sense, a Pell Grant is considered as federal financial aid and additional aid from other sources, either federal or non-federal, may be added on top.
The maximum Pell Grant award for the 2014-2015 year is $5,730. The amount available usually changes every year depending on the funds that the program has available. The maximum that an individual can get depends solely on the individual’s financial need, their cost to attend school, and their status as a full-time or part-time student.
Federal Pell Grants are usually applied toward tuition costs but arrangements can be made to pay the student directly (most likely via check). During limited occasions, a combination of these methods might be used. As far as regulations for the school, they must tell you in writing how much your award will be and the method that you will receive payment. Additionally, schools must disburse funds at least once per term.