Financial Aid

About the FAFSA

WHAT is the FAFSA?

FAFSA stands for Free Application for Federal Student Aid. When you complete the FAFSA, you are applying for federal and state student grants, work-study, and loans. When you fill out the FAFSA, you are answering a series of questions related to your and your parents’ (if you are considered a dependent student) financial condition.  This information is analyzed to determine your Expected Family Contribution (EFC) towards your college tuition. After filing the FAFSA, you will receive a Student Aid Report (SAR) which contains the data you entered on the FAFSA as well as your Expected Family Contribution. This information is submitted to the colleges you listed on the FAFSA, who will review the Student Aid Report and then determine how much financial aid to offer you. 

The FAFSA is designed to determine how much money the student and family can afford to put towards the student's college cost of attendance, and how much money the school should offer to the student and family.

 

WHEN should the FAFSA be completed?

 October 1st of your student's senior year is the first day you can file the FAFSA.  You do not need to have filed your taxes in order to file the FAFSA.  Use the tax information from two years before the student will begin college to ensure that it's submitted before the priority filing deadlines. For example, if your student is attending school beginning in the fall of 2019, you will use your 2017 tax information. Many families can use the IRS data retrieval tool to pull your income information directly from the IRS website. This cuts down on errors and will make it less likely that you will be chosen for verification, a lengthy process verifying the income information submitted on the FAFSA. 

Make sure that you apply as soon as you can! Meet the earliest priority deadline that any of your colleges have. By applying before the priority deadline, you ensure that you will get the maximum amount of money (grants, loans, scholarships) that you are eligible for. If you apply after that deadline, you are not guaranteed money.

 

HOW should the FAFSA be completed?

 The FAFSA can be filed three ways:

1. Online at www.fafsa.govPlease DO NOT go www.fafsa.com. The FAFSA is a FREE Application and you should not be charged to fill it out.

2. By downloading and mailing a PDF FAFSA, from www.federalstudentaid.gov. Click on “FAFSA Filing Options."

3. By requesting a paper FAFSA from 1.800.4.FED.AID that you complete and mail.

***Applying online is the fastest and easiest way to complete the FAFSA. When applying online, the FAFSA only provides questions that you need to answer based on your previous answers. Applying online will save you a lot of time, and you should hear back sooner about your financial aid. 


See Ms. Tembe in 161 (phone extension 1618) for help and check-ins about the FAFSA!


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