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Financial Aid Awareness Month Shines Light on Pell Grant

Deciphering grants, loans, and scholarships can seem an overwhelming task, but Lone Star College-Montgomery hopes for students to have a full understanding of the financial aid options available and the application process during Financial Aid Awareness Month.
On Tuesday, February 23, and Wednesday, February 24, from 12-2 p.m. representatives from LSC-Montgomery’s financial aid department will have a booth set up in The Commons (Building A) with plenty of information for students regarding financial aid. In fact, during the event, students will discover what the Pell Grant and “saggy pants” have in common.
“The answer may surprise some people, as most students are unaware of the history behind federal aid, as well as their options when it comes to applying for assistance,” said John Denton, director of financial aid at LSC-Montgomery. “We hope that, through this event, we can explain the Pell Grant and shed light on the entire financial aid process.”
Meet Claiborne Pell, a former senator from Rhode Island. More than 35 years ago, when the Higher Education Act was being authorized by the government, Pell stood up to organizations seeking federal funds for colleges and universities. He insisted, instead, that aid be put directly into the hands of students, allowing each student to attend the college or university of their choice.
“His idea was based somewhat on the GI Bill, which enabled veterans to take their government grant to the college of their choice,” explained Denton. “Pell was a champion for the students and their education.”
In 1972, Pell won his argument, and a federal grant that still bears his name today was created. The Pell Grant, a need-based financial gift for students provided by the U.S. Department of Education, provides the opportunity for students to work toward their degree without the worry of repayment.
Students all across the Lone Star College System are able to start or continue their education thanks in part to the Pell Grant. For the 2009-2010 academic year, more than $7 million in Pell Grant aid was awarded to more than 2,100 students at LSC-Montgomery.
For 2010, the U.S. Department of Education is slated to provide $13 billion in Pell aid to five million college students.
For more information about financial aid options and the application process, please visit www.lonestar.edu/financial-aid; email mcfinaid@lonestar.edu; or call the financial aid office at (936) 273-7227.
The financial aid office is open Monday-Wednesday, 8 a.m.-7 p.m.; Thursday, 9 a.m.-7 p.m.; and Friday, 9 a.m.- 2p.m.
LSC-Montgomery is located at 3200 College Park Drive, one-half mile west of Interstate 45, between Conroe and The Woodlands. For more information about the college, call (936) 273-7000, or visit www.LoneStar.edu/montgomery.
Lone Star College System consists of five colleges including LSC-CyFair, LSC-Kingwood, LSC-Montgomery, LSC-North Harris, and LSC-Tomball, six centers, LSC-University Center, LSC-University Park, Lone Star Corporate College, and LSC-Online. With more than 62,000 students in credit classes this spring, LSCS is the largest institution of higher education in the Houston area and third largest community college system in Texas. To learn more visit LoneStar.edu.