TITLE: Financial Aid Information Page

ACCESS: http://www.cs.cmu.edu/afs/cs/user/mkant/Public/FinAid/finaid.html

The Financial Aid Information Page offers an abundant array of information on financial aid and links to other useful sites. It was established in the fall of 1994 by Mark Kantrowitz, a PhD candidate in computer science at Carnegie Mellon University, who continues to maintain the site.

The page is updated frequently, with the date of last update given on the first page. It provides a "What's New" section of new resources within the last month and Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) files on financial aid. A table of contents and index to the site are included, and in general, the page is very well organized.

A very useful link featured on the page is called FastWEB, which is a searchable database of over 180,000 private scholarships, fellowships, grants and loans. Also quite useful, and easy to use, is the financial aid estimation form, which explains terminology and provides clear instructions. Calculators to estimate loan payments, expected family contributions, and savings growth for those interested in saving toward a future college education are provided.

The page contains many informative resources, such as a glossary of financial aid terms, a listing of free documents, important financial aid telephone numbers, information from university financial aid offices, foreign study aid, bibliographies, consultants and warnings on potential scams in financial aid. Links to other sources of financial aid information, including scholarship search services, are given. Information is also provided on relevant mailing lists, newsgroups and other Web sites. A lot of information from the US Government is available through hot links to specific agencies. For users of commercial online services, such as America Online, the location of financial aid resources for specific providers is listed.

Overall, this site is a gold mine to locate financial aid resources for students, parents and financial aid professionals.

Ann M. Tenglund
St. Bonaventure University

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