WHAT IS FINANCIAL AID?
Financial aid is money to help pay for college or career school. Aid can come from
- the U.S. federal government,
- the state where you live,
- the college you attend, or
- a nonprofit or private organization.
- Click the link above to find out about (3) FAFSA deadlines you need to be aware of.
TYPES OF FEDERAL STUDENT AID
Federal student aid includes:
FAFSA: APPLYING FOR FEDERAL STUDENT AID
To apply for federal student aid, you need to complete the FAFSA® (the Free Application for Federal Student Aid).
Completing and submitting the FAFSA® is free and quick, and it gives you access to the largest source of financial aid to pay for college or career school.
In addition, many states and colleges use your FAFSA data to determine your eligibility for state and school aid, and some private financial aid providers may use your FAFSA information to determine whether you qualify for their aid.
HOW TO FILE THE FAFSA
Filling out the FAFSA® can be a straightforward and easy process. The online FAFSA at fafsa.gov will guide you through the application; click on the “Start A New FAFSA” button on the home page, and just follow the directions on the screen. Below are some tips to help you along the way.
Ready to fill out the FAFSA now? Go for it!
Make sure to make an FSA ID first!
Creating a FAFSA ID
An FSA ID is a username and password that you must use to log in to certain U.S. Department of Education (ED) websites. Your FSA ID identifies you as someone who has the right to access your own personal information on ED websites such as the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA®) at fafsa.gov.
If you are a parent of a dependent student, you will need your own FSA ID if you want to sign your child's FAFSA electronically. If you have more than one child attending college, you can use the same FSA ID to sign all applications. Please note: Each FSA ID user must have a unique e-mail address.
Your FSA ID is used to sign legally binding documents electronically. It has the same legal status as a written signature. Don't give your FSA ID to anyone—not even to someone helping you fill out the FAFSA. Sharing your FSA ID could put you at risk of identity theft!
Understanding FINANCIAL AID AWARD LETTERS
Once you have been accepted to a college and sent them your FAFSA, you will receive a financial aid award letter from that college in the mail.
In order to make an informed decision about college, you need to understand how much it will cost you per year.