Financial Aid

6 months ago

Tips for getting financial aid/scholarship money from colleges:  Get to know the financial aid officer on a first name basis & always talk to the same person.  The early bird gets the worm, so start calling before the deadline.

FAFSA is the main financial aid form. It cannot be completed before January.  We have a yearly financial aid workshop here at MHS sometime in December/January (check with the Guidance Department for details) in order to help parents/students fill out the FAFSA.  Tax estimates can be used for the form; however, an .  All parents/students, regardless of income, should submit this form; some schools require it to be considered for scholarships (check with the schools individually).  Visit the website at:

If any financial aid/scholarship search requires payment from you, we do not encourage you to use it.
you are not assured of even recouping the money you spend.  You can do the research yourself for free!

MADE READYFOR COLLEGE LIFE You dreamed of going to college. And now you're here. So, start exploring, gather the resources you need — they're all here — articles, how-to videos, tips, calculators and more. Dive in — the next step on your journey will be unforgettable and you don’t want to miss a second of it.  Just a click away -

TAG (Tuition Assistance Grant) is a program that provides grants to VA residents for full-time attendance to eligible private colleges & universities in Virginia.

Learn about loans - the different types, interest rates. The Sallie Mae Corporation is an established educational loan company:  (800) 891-1385.. See this website for more information:

We know current and prospective Indigenous college students have several unique opportunities that can help them afford and succeed in college—many they might not even be aware of. Because of this, our guide is full of helpful information, such as:

  1. Advocacy organizations that help Native college students
  2. The financial aid process and documenting tribal status
  3. How to choose a college, including attending an Indigenous Serving Institutions and Tribal College
  4. Scholarships and grants specifically for Indigenous students

Our guide also includes expert interviews, including a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion dean and an Indigenous student, which offer insight into college life and the scholarship process. takes care to create thoughtful guides and balanced school rankings that aim to help students find the right educational and career path. If you believe, as we do, that your community would benefit from this resource, please consider linking to it on your Scholarship Deadlines page.

Attend the Financial Aid Workshop in December/January (listen for announcements). 

Visit the following websites for more financial aid information:

Scholarship Saturday - opportunities for students. Get matched to colleges and scholarships that really fit you. - for copies of the guide, Funding Education Beyond High School:  The Guide to Federal Student Aid, and other information. - financial aid (a great place to start) & college searches - variety of college-bound subjects (college lists, payment plans, policies to reduce costs, average price per school, contact names) - The State Council of Higher Education for Virginia - information about tuition, fees, financial aid, applying for financial aid, etc. - "Paying for your college education" - College Connection Scholarships - Educaid - American Student Assistance - Financial Aid Supersite - Jack Kent Cooke Foundation - FinAid - Scholaraid - Scholarship Resource Network - United Negro College Fund - Air Force ROTC Scholarship - Scholarships for Performing, Visual and Literary Artists - Key Education Resources - Accredited school online - Finding scholarships, grants and other assistance - The guide was created to educate families on the risks and costs of using private educational loans.

Your Guide to Getting Through the FAFSA is another great resource for explaining how the FAFSA works.

Guide to Paying for College - Financial Aid, Scholarships, Savings, & Student Loans
In this guide, we go over the cost of college and the associated steps to pay for it. There are 6 steps in total, including The Cost of College, The Steps to Paying for College, Financial Aid, Scholarships & Grants, College Savings Accounts, and Student Loans.

Consumer Affairs for those students/parents who might've already exhausted all federal, state, and institutional financial resources and are still facing a financial gap with limited options.

Students & Financial Literacy A college education is one of the most important investments you will ever make. By managing how you pay for school and what you spend money on, you can worry less about debt and more about your career come graduation time.Receiving scholarships can greatly reduce how much you pay for college. Scholarships come in many shapes, sizes – and dollar amounts. Many students receive partial scholarships from different sources.

The Ultimate Guide to Financial Aid and FAFSA for College Students This in-depth guide gives college students all the resources they need to successfully apply for the FAFSA and fund their college costs.


3 months ago


Where to find them? The Guidance Office posts a list of available scholarships and their due dates, or view list at this link; it is up to you to solicit the information and complete the applications. Many are due before winter break; start early.

There is a generic scholarship application available in March and due in April  that is used for local organizations donating money to our seniors.  Some are one time awards; others are given annually, if you meet the requirements.  Specifications are delineated when the award is granted; it is up to the recipient to follow the guidelines to reapply the next year.

College Financial Aid offices may have links to scholarships specific to their college.  Stay in contact with the Financial Aid Officer, and be sure to ask whether you are taking advantage of everything the school has to offer.

There are clearing houses for scholarships that you may choose to use.  BE AWARE AND BE WARY of the fees involved, and know that results are not guaranteed.  If any financial aid/scholarship search requires payment from you, we recommend you do not use it.

Visit the following websites for more scholarship information: - Scholar aid - United Negro College Fund - Air Force ROTC Scholarship is offering students the chance to earn up to $8,500 for scoring well on the PSAT and $1,000 for simply taking the test from schools like Tulane, Syracuse, University of Dayton and Denver. is a free service for students and high schools. Learn more.

Financial Guide for African Americans The financial aid guide for minority students was recently published at :

Another guidebook was created to help students from many minority groups -- including African American, Native American, Asian and Pacific Islander, and others -- better understand their financial aid options. The guide includes a wealth of resources intended to help minority students and their families through the scholarship and financial aid process. These resources include:

- A list of scholarships available to students from various minority groups
- A step-by-step guide to finding scholarships and grants
- A breakdown of the many types of financial aid available

Echo Lynch, a long-time Financial Aid Program Officer helped us develop the guidebook, providing an in-depth look at the nuances of today's financial aid. During her 18-year tenure, Lynch has served countless first-generation and low-income minority students and their families.

You can find this guide at: Minority scholarships

Financial Aid for Adults Going Back to College

Many adults considering their options to go back to college are concerned that they will not qualify for financial aid. The good news is that there is no age limit for federal student aid, and almost anyone is eligible. The first step is to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), and the quickest way to apply is online through the website,

Federal aid for adult students can be used to pay for the expenses associated with college education, including tuition, fees, accommodation, transportation, and books. You can also use your federal aid to fund equipment, such as a personal computer. Students with disabilities can use the funds to purchase assistive devices to enable them to access classes or any other equipment necessary to complete their study programs.

New scholarships for High School seniors attending Middlesex High School. With high school seniors approaching graduation (and potentially college as well), it's more important than ever for them to start applying to scholarships! We recently published an exclusive list of new scholarships and we'd love to receive applications from Middlesex High School students. We’d be honored if you could share the available scholarships here: on your website. You can find the updated list of Scholarships for High School Seniors here: 
Along with the list of scholarships, the page is full of useful information. It talks about why scholarships are necessary, the different types of scholarships available, and how to apply/earn scholarships.

College Testing

4 years ago

College Testing  - HIGH SCHOOL CODE: 472-050

When to Take the Tests.  The College Board, the company that makes the SAT, makes the following recommendation about when to take college entrance examinations:

"The College Board does not recommend that students take the SAT so early in their junior year.  Students taking the test then, risk not doing their best because they will not have covered as much English and math course work as students testing later in that year.  Normally, most students wait until spring of their junior year to take the SAT. That makes good sense."
 - Gaston Caperton, President, College Board, August 2004

To help students become more college-aware, all sophomores will take the PSAT. All college bound students should take the PSAT their junior year to prepare for SATs in the spring;  PSAT scores are not reported to colleges, and the score report identifies strategies for improving scores. The SAT could then be taken spring of junior year and again fall of senior year.  Scores tend to have little variation after three administrations, unless something significant occurs to change them (completing an upper level math course, for instance, or taking a preparation class). While colleges look at the highest scores in math, verbal and writing, all scores are sent.  The new Score Option allows you to send a specific set of scores from a particular administation; use only if your highest scores came from a particular test.

Apply on-line at: or pick up a form in the Guidance Office.  Tests are given frequently at Christchurch and Gloucester.  Fee waivers are given by the Guidance Department to those who qualify. Students with disabilities may qualify for alternate administrations.

SAT II Tests.  Students should be aware of the entrance requirements of the colleges they are planning to apply to, and take those SAT II Tests required by those schools.

Apply on-line at:, or pick up a form in the Guidance Office.  Tests are given frequently at Christchurch and Gloucester.  Fee waivers are given by the Guidance Department to those who qualify.  Students with disabilities may qualify for alternate administrations.

ACT.  The ACT is the preferred college entrance test of many southern schools.  We recommend all students take it once; the testing style may tap a student's strengths; it may yield a stronger score than repeated SAT sessions.

Apply on-line at:, or pick up a form in the Guidance Office.  Tests are given occasionally at Christchurch and Gloucester.  Fee waivers are given by the Guidance Department to those who qualify.  Students with disabilities may qualify for alternate administrations.

SAT Prep. A SAT preparation course is offered at MHS each fall.  Contact the Guidance Office for more information.

FOR FREE PRACTICE: -  website for full length PSAT, SAT and ACT practice tests - from the Department of the Army  - ACT Academy

Varsity Learning Tools currently provides free diagnostic tests, practice tests, flashcards, and questions of the day for the ACT and SAT

  - ACT Academy

SAT (updated):

Khan Academy - free through College Board.

ACT book (downloadable):

Also there are over 100,000 professionally written problems and thousands of distinct practice tests across 150 subjects, including foreign languages, history, math, and science at all levels of sophistication, as well as a full Common Core section. Please check out our main site...

Main site:

PrepFactory is a free, interactive test prep site for teachers and students. Our site breaks the test into bite-sized concepts and provides strategy tips, practice sets, and a personalized study path so you can master the test. Give us a look at!

Two-Year Schools and Technical Programs

5 years ago

Transfer Virginia

The Transfer Virginia Portal was initiated by state legislation and built collaboratively by the institutions of learning in Virginia. The portal directly serves all students in high school and beyond who aspire to enroll in a Virginia college or university either as a first-time student or a transfer student. 

The legislative goal of providing broader access to higher education for all students depends on a collective effort to make the portal accessible and to promote its use to students across the Commonwealth. 

Two-Year Schools and Technical Program

Community Colleges.  Community Colleges offer a variety of programs from Associates degrees that serve as preparation for transfer to a four-year college, to certificate programs that train you for a specific career.  Applications deadlines are generally more flexible than four year schools, depending on the program and school. And be sure you visit the campus to decide whether this school is right for you.

One great advantage to community college is the cost; these schools are far less expensive and often have grant money based on need ( FAFSA forms are still required to receive financial aid, however).  Additionally, students often still live at home, so they save housing costs.

There are 5 community colleges within driving distance of Middlesex County: Rappahannock Community College (two campuses - Glenns and Warsaw), J. Sargeant Reynolds (Richmond), John Tyler (Chester), Thomas Nelson (Hampton), and Tidewater (Norfolk).  Each has different programs and selection processes; use the College Book or the websites to find the specifics for each school.

Technical Schools. These schools may offer Associates degrees or certificates in programs designed to teach job skills in a specific area.  These programs are typically short - 6 month to 2 years - but are also typically more expensive than community college. They too accept financial aid and will help you find loans or grants to pay for their programs; complete a FAFSA for these programs and talk with their financial aid specialists to take advantage of all you qualify for.

RN to BSN Overview An educational hub for current and prospective students looking to attend a Healthcare or Nursing School ( that contains typical program outlines, costs, textbook information, and an expansion of the subject matter taught throughout the degree program as well as numerous citings on post-graduate career information in the field. (, we have published around 40 resource pieces answering all the questions that prospective or current nursing students would have.