Filling out the FAFSA is the first step for students to access federal grants and loans as well as both state and institutional grants and scholarships. These funds can be used to pay for tuition and fees, room and board, books and supplies. The funding students access by completing the FAFSA is a pivotal part in many students’ decision to attend college.
TCCC’s High School Graduation Network launched the College Cash Campaign to provide supports for tri-county high schools during the 2018-2019 school year. The goal of the campaign is to increase FAFSA completion and college enrollment rates in regional high schools. TCCC staff support will work alongside school guidance counselors, administrators and teachers to build a college-going culture, host financial aid literacy workshops and outreach events, and provide FAFSA completion and college application assistance.
What is federal student aid?
Federal student aid comes from the U.S. Department of Education. It can be used to pay expenses for attending two-year and four-year colleges and can be in the form of grants, loans and work study.
Types of allowed expenses include tuition and fees, room and board, books and supplies.
How do I get federal student aid?
You apply for federal student aid by completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, known as the FAFSA.
The FAFSA for students in the class of 2019 who are planning to attend college in the 2019-2020 school year became available starting on October 1, 2018 at www.fafsa.gov. The deadline to submit the FAFSA is June 30, 2019.
What will I need to complete the FAFSA?
Your FSA ID (both student’s and parent’s) *
Your social security number
Your driver’s license number (if you have one)
Your 2017 tax records (these can be directly downloaded from the IRS)
Records of untaxed income and assets
List of colleges you’re interested in attending
* To complete the FAFSA, both the student and the parent will need to have a FSA ID. FSA ID is a username and password that you must use to login to U.S. Department of Education websites. You can create your FSA ID at www.StudentAid.gov/fsaid.
Why should I complete the FAFSA?
It is the only way to qualify for free federal cash for college that does not have to be paid back.
It is required for low-interest loans from the federal government.
It is required for federal work-study funds that are earned and do not have to be paid back.
Many colleges require it for non-federal student assistance that they or the state offers.
It is FREE!
What if I need help with the FAFSA?
The FAFSA form itself contains guidance for each section that answers most of the common questions.
Students and parents with other FAFSA-related questions should contact their school’s guidance department, call the federal student aid toll-free hotline at 1-800-433-3243 or email TCCC’s College Cash Campaign at CollegeCash@TriCountyCradleToCareer.org.
Can I use my phone to submit the FAFSA?
Yes! The new mobile app myStudentAid has been released, and the 2019-2020 FAFSA is available on it beginning October 1, 2018.
“This project is working to ensure that all students who want to go to college take advantage of the financial resources available to them,” said Cathy Almquist, who serves as the co-convener of TCCC’s High School Graduation Network and vice president for academic affairs at Trident Technical College. “Completing the FAFSA is an important first step in discovering what financial assistance is available. There are many financial aid resources to help pay for college – and many of these are not based on need – but nearly all require completion of the FAFSA. The sooner students and their families complete this important step the sooner they can begin planning for their college experience.”
“The FAFSA is the only way to qualify for free federal cash for college that does not have to be paid back,” said Sarah Piwinski, Tri-County Cradle to Career Collaborative’s Director of Data Management and Analysis. “Unfortunately, many students in our region who hope to go to college miss out on their dreams because they don’t submit the FAFSA and are unable to pay for college.”