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You Can Save Money on Virginia Tuition

Updated: Feb 11, 2023

Get Virginia In-State Tuition

One of the more affordable ways to get a bachelor’s degree typically is to attend an in-State public school. Here is a website with information about how to qualify as a Virginia resident: While in-State tuition for a public institution is not financial aid, it is subsidized. Please be aware that tuition costs vary quite a bit across public institutions in Virginia. The most expensive, the College of William and Mary, is almost twice as much as the least expensive four-year Virginia public. The cost of attending an in-State public institution should be compared against the cost of other institutions after financial aid awards are offered. Families often do not pay the sticker price.

Get a Virginia Government Grant to Go to a Private School

The Virginia Tuition Assistance Grant (VTAG) Program provides grant aid for Virginia residents to attend private schools. Apply no later than July 1 before the school year. Information about the VTAG Grant Program is available at:

The VTAG grant program provides tuition assistance to Virginia resident undergraduate students enrolled full-time in degree programs at eligible private nonprofit Virginia colleges or universities. The maximum size of the grant is subject to change, it is $4,000 for the 2021-22 school year. The grants are not need-based. Since in-State tuition for Virginia public schools is subsidized by the State, these grants help to “level the playing field” by providing a subsidy for Virginia residents to attend private schools in Virginia.

Virginia Need-Based Grants

The Virginia Commonwealth Award Program provides need-based financial aid. Information about the program can be found at:

Students complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid or FAFSA ® to apply for a grant under this program. (The FAFSA ® is the same form students complete to obtain Pell Grants and other types of Federal student aid, so you might have already filled it out!) The funds go to Virginia public institutions to award to undergraduate students. The institutions determine the size of the awards.

The Virginia Guaranteed Assistance Program is another need-based grant program. Information about it can be found here: As is the case with the Virginia Commonwealth Award Program, students complete the FAFSA ® to apply for the program and institutions distribute the aid. Institutions are required to distribute the funds in proportion to need.

The University of Virginia is one of two public institutions in the U.S. that both (1) has need-blind admissions and (2) meets the full need of the students it admits. You can see the names of other institutions (public and private) that are both need-blind and meet full need here:

Other Virginia Grants and Scholarships

Other Virginia programs are more narrowly targeted to certain groups of students, which are included on this website:

Virginia Merit-Based Financial Aid

Virginia does not have the large merit-based financial aid programs one finds in Georgia (Hope Scholarships) or Florida (Bright Futures). Individual institutions, including public institutions, however, distribute merit-based aid. Typically the application for admission to the institutions functions as the application for the scholarship. In addition, less selective institutions are typically more likely to provide merit-based financial aid than highly selective institutions.

Educ8Fit Consulting

For more information about financial aid in general, please visit our website at Paying for College | Educ8Fit Consulting. Please contact us at Educ8Fit Consulting at either or College Admission Counseling | Educ8fit Consulting | United States, contact for a free 30-minute consultation.

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1 Comment

Feb 23, 2022

Excellent article with money saving advice

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