Financial Aid is money to help you pay for college. It may be in the form of grants, scholarships, loans, work-study programs or a combination. The aid comes from federal and state governments, colleges and universities, banks and private organizations.
Applying to receive financial aid is a separate process from applying for admission to a college; you have to do both. For all government aid, and much private and institutional aid, you apply using the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA. Just remember that the amount of aid awarded every year may change.