As part of our ongoing efforts to share information, the UET Online Magazine features important announcements on events and learning opportunities for bargaining unit employees. Listed below are links to specific timely information for UET Members. Create or update your User Profile by clicking myUET to receive program updates and the UET Online Magazine by e-mail.
You have identified your training needs and researched training options. Now follows the difficult part: deciding how to pay for it. Like most people, you are not independently wealthy and so you start to explore other financial resources. There are many funding options available to you.
First and foremost, UET provides several funding programs depending on your training needs. However, you may find that the UET programs do not cover all your educational expenses. Consequently searching for additionally financial resources becomes important.
There are several convenient places to search for additional dollars. Visiting your training institution’s financial aid office is the first stop. Most colleges and universities have scholarships that go un-used each year. Speak with a financial aide counselor at your school and complete the FAFSA form (www.fafsa.ed.gov), the federal government application for federal financial support which is often used by colleges to award grants, scholarships and loans.
It is important to note that grants are dollars that do not need to be repaid but loans need to be repaid. Should you choose to accept a loan offered by the school, be mindful of the interest rate: is it fixed or variable? The type of interest can have repayment implications for you down the road.
In addition to the school’s financial aid office, check with the department of the major you will be studying. Often individual college departments have their own grants and scholarships they can provide to students.
Besides your training institution, there are other state and national sources that provide scholarships and grants. These can be accessed through the Internet at: www.fastweb.com, http://ocis.ode.state.oh.us, www.finaid.org, www.ed.gov/finaid and www.studentloanfunding.com.
Don’t forget to explore local civic or religious organizations such as the Lion or Kiwanis clubs as well as private foundations that provide scholarships to students. As as AFSCME affiliate, OCSEA participates in the AFSCME Advantage program, which also offers scholarships. For more information, go to www.afscme.org/members/891.cfm and click on the “scholarships” link.
If all else fails, talk with the bursar’s office at your educational institution about personal payment plans. Most colleges and universities have a variety of payment plans based on your budget.
For further information and support on where to locate educational funding dollars, contact the UET career counseling program at (800) 980-6973. Counselors are available to assist you in locating training dollars.
While this process can be frustrating and tedious, be persistent! Research has shown that year after year there are many unused scholarship and grant dollars available to people.
Gail Michalski, Career Counseling Coordinator