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Nitro Knowledge. Your Guide to Paying for College.


Was your financial aid award less than you expected? Has your ability to pay for school changed? Do you think the college may have overlooked something when decided your award amount?

No need to panic. You always have options. And in some cases, one of those options might be to craft a well-written financial aid appeal letter. Here, we're going to tell you how to write one. Bonus: We'll even show you a sample that you can customize.

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For most students, even generous award packages leave a significant gap between the cost of college and what you (and your family) can afford to pay. If that’s the case for you, a well-crafted appeal letter — with documented reasons for your appeal — might convince the college of your choice to increase your financial aid award.

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Typically, when people think of financial aid, they think of need-based grants and federal loans that are subsidized or have other favorable terms, largely given to students with demonstrated financial need. But there are plenty of aid options for families with higher incomes.

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The Stafford Loan is a federal student loan offered by the U.S. Department of Education to help eligible students pay for college. 

You may see this loan referred to as a Federal Stafford Loan, a Direct Student Loan, or a Direct Stafford Loan. The good news: they all mean the same thing. However, there are two types of Stafford Loans: subsidized and unsubsidized. Let's talk about each.

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It’s no surprise that colleges are seeing a deluge in financial aid appeals ahead of the fall semester. Obviously, COVID-19 has impacted many people’s ability to pay for college.

If you’re planning to appeal your award, it’s important to know that the process is less straight-forward than usual this year. While that may create a bit more chaos on the school’s side, it may actually be a benefit to you. Here’s what you need to know.

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With only a week to go before the traditional May 1st National College Decision Day, you may find yourself second-guessing your school choice — or possibly your decision to attend college in the fall at all. Nothing is normal during a pandemic. 

How can you navigate one of the biggest decisions of your life when it’s impossible to know what life will look several months from now? Here are five things to think about. 

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