On Monday, February 1, I went to the senior parent financial aid night at 6 p.m. here at Heritage High School. I learned that school counselors such as Ms. Horton, Ms. Ange, and Mr. Franks are always willing to help students in every way they can. The three of them gave the presentation since Ben Meadow, Georgia Student Finance Commission Representative, was unable to attend. There are many different options when it comes to financial aid. They will look at the cost of attendance and the amount of income, which includes the income of both the parents and the student if they are working. Some of the things that will not be calculated include homes, family farms, and retirement accounts. Some grants that you may receive include the HOPE Grant, Zell Miller Grant, Strategic Industries Workforce Development Grant (SIWDG), and the HOPE GED Grant. The HOPE Grant is a non-need based grant, and the HOPE Scholarship is merit-based. There are also need-based grants, student or parent loans, work-study programs, and military aid grants. If a student already has a loan, a parent can apply for another one under their name to receive more money. Financial aid can come from the federal government, state government, colleges and universities, private foundations, employers and private companies, and professional and service organizations. There are many different websites that are available to provide very useful information, like the Georgia College 411 website. Additionally, it is always helpful to talk to a school’s financial aid office and receive their advice. Heritage High School wants to make college more affordable, and our guidance counselors can help.