- Look into getting a General Educational Development (GED) certificate if you don’t have a high school diploma; try searching online for “GED certificate” and your state’s name.
- Research careers and the need for various jobs in the Occupational Outlook Handbook. Or, for an interactive tool, try the U.S. Department of Labor’s career search.
- Use College Navigator to find the right school for your career intentions. Get tips on choosing a school.
- Ask employers to recommend schools that provide training in the skills you will need for the career you choose.
- Ask your employer if assistance is available to help you pay for school.
- Use the U.S. Department of Labor’s scholarship search to find scholarships.
- Apply for federal student aid by filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA®).
- Get to know the financial aid staff at the school you plan to attend; they can help you with aid applications and explain the types of aid available.
- Use the College Scorecard to compare schools' annual costs, graduation rate, and median salary after attending.
- Ensure that you get your money’s worth out of your vocational education by following the tips in the fact sheet called Choose a Career School Carefully.
- Learn about federal funding for your education.
- Discover why federal student loans are a better option than private loans.
- See how you might benefit from federal income tax credits for education expenses.