Pell Grant in California

Pell Grant in California

The Pell Grant is a type of financial aid the federal government provides to help students pay for college.

The main objective of introducing the Pell Grant is to help students who don’t have money complete their education.

The Pell Grant program was introduced in 1972 as the Basic Educational Opportunity Grant before being renamed in honor of Senator Claiborne Pell.

Remember that a Pell Grant is for students who belong to low-income families and don’t have a bachelor’s degree. This grant can help them get a bachelor’s degree from their chosen educational institution.

The grant amount will be released based on the student’s financial needs. You need to fill out the FAFSA form to get among the applicants.

Pell Grant in California – Who is Eligible for it?

As discussed earlier, a Pell Grant is exclusively for students from low-income families or economically weaker sections of society.

The United States Department of Education funds this grant.

People belonging to low-income families have limited or no source of income. A Pell Grant is a boon for them as it helps them educate their children to improve their financial condition.

The money you get under a Pell Grant is free, and you don’t have to return it, which is why most students apply for it; however, if you withdraw early from the program for which the grant was awarded, you have to pay back the portion of the funds.

Pell Grant is for you if you:

  • Have completed a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)
  • Working toward your first undergraduate degree or a post-baccalaureate teacher certification program
  • Enrolled in an eligible post-secondary school
  • Are you a US citizen, or an eligible non-citizen
  • Have a valid Social Security Number
  • Have passed a high school diploma or General Education Development (GED) certificate
  • Ensure that the funds will be used for educational purposes
  • Are you registered with the Selective Service (if you are male)

You can fill out the application for Pell Grant at

Before applying for a Pell Grant, getting information on the cost of attendance at the institution of your choice is essential.

The cost of attendance is originally the annual cost advertised by the institution. Once you have the cost of attendance, it becomes easier to know how much money you need.

How much money can a student get under the Federal Pell Grant?

The amount you receive under a Federal Pell Grant changes yearly; for 2023-24, the maximum amount you can get is $7,395.

However, your Pell Grant amount depends on the following:

  • Your Expected Family Contribution (EFC)
  • Your educational status as a full-time or part-time student
  • The cost of attendance
  • Your plans to attend the institution for a complete year or less

Pell Grant eligibility is limited to 12 semesters (or approximately six years), but this is calculated as a percentage of the total amount of Pell Grant funding a student can receive over their lifetime, known as Lifetime Eligibility Used (LEU).

If you received the grant for the first year, you will not automatically receive it in the second year. You must apply again for the Pell Grant funding for the second year.

Other Educational Grants

Cal Grant

Cal Grant is a state grant available only to California residents. It is for students who want to pursue an undergraduate degree or get vocational or career training.

The Cal Grant comprises three types – A, B, and C. Let’s discuss the Cal Grant types in detail.

1. Cal Grant A

The Cal Grant A provides need-based funds to low- and middle-income students to pay tuition fees. You must have a minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA to get Cal Grant A.

You must also meet appropriate grant income and asset ceilings established by the California Student Aid Commission (CSAC).

Applicant must be enrolled in a minimum of 6 units. For 2023-24, the maximum amount one can get under Cal Grant A is $6,000.

2. Cal Grant B

Cal Grant B is also a need-based grant, but it is for high-potential students belonging to low-income or disadvantaged families. The grant can be used to pay tuition fees or meet other educational needs.

You must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 and an appropriate grant income and asset ceiling established by the California Student Aid Commission (CSAC).

Cal Grant B pays an Access Award to help students pay for non-tuition expenses. The Access Award amount for 2023-24 is up to $1,648. You can get this amount in addition to a Cal Grant A.

3. Cal Grant C

The Cal Grant C is available for occupational or technical students. The good thing about Cal Grant C is that there is no GPA requirement.

A student can receive $1,094 for buying books, tools, and equipment for her technical education program.

You don’t have to apply separately for these Cal Grant types.

Filled the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or California Dream Act Application (CADAA). You will get a particular Cal Grant type based on your application and GPA.

For more information, visit


A Pell Grant can be useful to students who don’t have money to complete a bachelor’s degree. You will find complete information about a Federal Pell Grant in this post.

Additionally, you will get information on other educational grants that can be utilized to fund your education.

See Also

Grants for Single Moms in California

Pell Grants in Mississippi

Pell Grants in Kentucky

Pell Grants in Ohio

Mortgage for Single Moms

Mommy Makeover Cost

Hardship Grants Provide You Fast Cash

Current Version
April 6, 2024
Updated By
Andrea Morales G.
June 21, 2022
Written By
Victoria Abigail Friedland

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