College in the US is expensive—too expensive, in fact, for the average student to be able to afford on their own. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, 85% of first-year students at four-year colleges were receiving financial aid in 2016-17. Financial aid is good in all its forms, right? If it helps college students afford their educations, what could be the problem?
Unfortunately, not all financial aid is created equal—and not all schools can afford to give out "good" student aid. Here, I'll briefly talk about the types of financial aid available (the "good" kinds and the "bad" kinds) before introducing the colleges with the best financial aid programs in the country.