When we consider the question of whether college grants for woman are necessary, we have to take our history, our present and our future into account to make an informed decision. Many people would argue that an organisation that gives separate college grants to women and men is redundant, since the goal of feminism for many years has been to postulate that men and women are equal. However, this catch-22 has been puzzling feminists and those who study feminism for a long time. Is it necessary to help women as a previously disadvantaged rights group, or do we owe them the respect of not trying to help one specific gender group over another?
What are college grants and why do women need them?
College grants for woman are similar to grants in general in that they offer financial assistance to those women who wish to further their educations in a formal institution. These college grants are received from the government and from private organisations with the aim of developing individuals who contribute to society as a whole. With over ten thousand grants currently available to women, the chances of enriching society are growing greater by the day.
College Grants for woman in the past
Since the suffragettes of the mid nineteenth century, the fight for women’s rights has raged stronger and stronger with each passing decade. While women did attend female colleges to learn such subjects as poise and decorum, good housekeeping and clear penmanship, this was obviously not enough to stimulate them, nor to soothe the angry fires of feminism that burned strong. In fact, it wasn’t even until the 1960s that women could attend college with men, or study the same subjects as their male counterparts, and this aggravating factor has only served to reinforce to these revolutionaries that they stand correct in their fight.
As late as the 1980s women were still basing their choice of college on the prevalence of arts subjects, instead of the traditionally male careers in business and medicine. In terms of financial aid, college grants for woman were a supposition, an idea that hung in the air, invisible to some but so necessary to those fighting for equality. For these women, the fight for equality in education was far from over, and they took a stand, which may be one of the only reasons that we have become so enlightened today.
The current state of affairs
No woman in the United States of America these days is without options when it comes to her education. Whether a single mother, an older woman or even married, every woman is given the option of attending the college of her choice to pursue the education she deserves, no matter what it is. But how can women live out these dreams when they cannot afford them? Isn’t it cruel to tempt them with a promise of education but not deliver by giving them no special compensation to claim that temptation?
Actually, this is not the case as there are many women-specific single parent grants in place in the US, and within this sub-division, there are more sub-divisions of grants just for black women, those for women hoping to enter the medical or dental fields and those who wish to study in the fields of engineering, computer science or information science. There are even grants that offer special compensation in housing or tuition for women with handicaps. Some college grants for women or single mothers are awarded based on achievement such as the Barry Goldwater Scholarship for women with an above-average grade point average, and who wish to study within any field.
So with these college grants available, why are women still clamouring for attention and equal rights? The simple answer would be because it is not the grants for woman or single mothers that feminists are fighting for, but the fact that they are even necessary. But one has to ask amongst the gender tension, are these college grants still a necessity, or can we upgrade them to luxury, an item that is nice to have but no longer needed?
Every year, the US government spends roughly $25 billion on grants for single moms. While it may seem that this is a lot of money, consider just what the recipients would use them for. Women, especially those who are single or single parents, would use grant money not just to pay for their tuition or their books, but also for housing and to supplement their income while they are studying.
For single mothers especially, the option of going to college is often taken from them because they cannot give their children attention and physical necessities, and pay for their own college education in both time and money. This is when college grants for women make a really big difference, because in the long run, these women are getting an education with a view to get a higher-paying job, provide more for their children and contribute more effectively to society.
The future – where will grants lead?
To predict where college grants will take us in the future, we first need to unpack the reason for a college education. For women making it in a world dominated by men may seem impossible, and that is where education steps in and takes the reins. For these women, ‘grants for woman’ is more than just a phrase. It is the possibility of a better future for themselves and their families.
If women hope to make themselves heard and play in a predominantly male-driven world without having to sacrifice their feminism, they need to be educated, not just in terms of what they learn in the college classrooms but also in emotional intelligence, which they learn throughout the entire college experience. How can we expect girls to transition into women if they do not have a safe place to do so? In cases where girls go straight from high school to work, they get a rude awakening, and often indulge in self-destructive behaviour or withdraw from society altogether.
The present recipients of college grants could be the future doctors, lawyers and engineers of America. However, without that chance being given to them, they will stagnate and their potential talent will wither and die. Though this may not seem like a tragedy in terms of one individual, when you put the individuals together to form a society, you realise the severe impact that this can have on an economy and the people within it.
Why Offer College Grants for Single Mothers?
The US government and companies within America recognise the important role that women play in society. They see women and single mothers as contributors to the economy and by giving them college grants, hope to enrich the country as a whole, and add value to professions such as medicine, architecture and engineering, previously male-dominated professions.
The fastest growing sector in which these grants are offered is actually within business, where private companies hope to develop the potential of women. Of course, for them, the benefit is that these women will become staff members in their organisation and make money for that company. Thus, though their investment may be large, their return on investment will usually be more profound.
Many companies will offer college grants just to women when they want to equalise the gender disparity in a workplace that is male-dominated. In this case, the women may have the desire to join the aforementioned workforce, but not the opportunity or skills to join these companies. Giving them grants offers them this opportunity.
Where to look for grants
If you’re one of the many desperate for help in the money department, look no further than the financial aid office on campus. At almost every college, there are counselors available who help people apply for loans, grants and scholarships every day. For those who are single parents as most young Americans are these days, these grants can be the lifeline that offers them a chance to improve their lives and their moneymaking potential.
You can also look for college grants online. There are many sites that offer to help in that department, including the actual college sites. A little research and a quick keyword search on Google or Bing will get you the results you’re looking for.
What’s the difference between grants, scholarships and loans?
There is always a little bit of confusion surrounding terms such as grants and scholarships, and when you’re trying to apply for financial aid, getting to know these terms is a necessity. Firstly, a loan is exactly what it seems. A bank gives you the money you need to study now, and then claims it back from you, usually with a low added interest rate, when you are done with your studies. While you may end up paying those college loans off for many years, in the long run they do pay for themselves.
Where scholarships and college grants differ is in the reason the money is granted. In terms of a scholarship, money is given to the potential student based on a continued achievement. For example, if you’re a star football player in high school, a college scout may come to watch one of your games, and that college may offer you a football scholarship. What this means is that you have the resources to study as long as you play on the college football team. Scholarships do not take into account financial status or background.
Conversely, a grant is a gift of financial aid bestowed upon people by the government. It takes into account the applicant’s financial status, their background and history, so that grants are not given to those who don’t really have a need for them. A grant is not a loan. That money doesn’t need to be paid back to the lender. It is not a scholarship, so applicants don’t need to worry if their grades aren’t good enough or they don’t play a sport. A grant is given for the simple reason that the government wishes to encourage youngsters to become educated and contribute meaningfully to society.
What college grants are available to you?
The most popular grants available in the United States include the Pell Grant, LEAP and others. The Federal Pell Grant is provided by the government to those students who have no other means of financial support for college tuition, though they depend on the student’s family to make a contribution too. They are granted mainly to students who are pursuing an undergraduate degree.
The Federal Supplemental Education Opportunity Grant also provides money for college to undergraduate students whose families can only make a very small contribution, or none at all. While the amounts of the grants vary from student to student, this grant may be the gateway to education for some students. Other less well-known grants include the Leveraging Education Assistance Partnership and the Robert C Byrd Honors Scholarship Program, which grants money only to those students who have proven to be exceptional in their high schools.
The world of financial aid may be frightening to potential students, and just like buying a ticket in the lottery, they may be thinking: I can never win, or: the odds are against me. However, unlike the lottery that is based solely on random number generation, college grants do get given to those who are deserving of them, and if this premise holds true, then the person who receive a grant may be someone just like you.
At the end of the day, you have to trust in the system, seeing as it has been specifically put into place to help people who, like you, are struggling to make ends meet. It gives aid to those who dream of a better life where they can provide for their family, for their children and for themselves without needing a government hand-out. Grants are for the youngsters from poor backgrounds, the single parents trying to kick-start their lives and for those who never got an opportunity to go to college in their youth, and wish to improve their lives now. College grants are the catalysts that change people’s lives.
What Types of College Grants are Available?
Federal grants for woman come courtesy of the US government who sees it in the best interests of the country to provide these grants. Of course, there are other types of grants available to women. A woman can receive a grant from a private organisation or a private person even and fund their education in that way. Martha Stewart and Bill Gates are just two of the many famous individuals who grant this financial aid to those in need.
Women can also receive corporate grants, which are usually given to them either through a foundation or by a company where they work. Last but not least is the giving of grants for woman by non-profit organisations, which are usually set up by the government or by private business to assist with the process of educating young women either to contribute to society or to create their own workforce.
Back to the question of whether these college grants are a necessity or luxury, we can make the inference that they are in fact a necessity, since the opportunities that men have had have not necessarily been created for women. By giving them college grants from private organisations, private individuals or from the government, we are giving them the potential for change, that is, the opportunity to differentiate themselves within society and become contributors to the economy. The power of women is great. They have shown over and over again through history that they are strong, motivated and intelligent and it is with college grants for woman that we can unlock that power.