High school students who take academically rigorous curriculum are at a distinct advantage starting college over those who just take courses to get by and get out.
Algebra II, chemistry, physics and a foreign language all look good on college applications.
One of the big advantages for many Payson graduates is the automatic scholarship money that is available for PELL grant qualifiers who are also Arizona Academic Scholars (AAS), according to Richard Meyer, Payson High School Business Instructor.
The U.S. Department of Education recently announced an additional $750 for first year college students and $1,300 for second year college students who took a rigorous course of study in high school and are receiving PELL grants.
PELL grants are based first on financial need, then on the cost of college attendance and the amount a student's family can afford to kick in.
The maximum amount for 2004-2005 was $4,050.
On Feb. 20, 21 and 22 Rim Country Middle School eighth-graders will be making their plans for high school.
More information and forms on federal student aid can be found at: http://www.fafsa.ed.gov/ and http://studentaid.ed.gov/.