YOUR FINANCIAL AID NEED-TO-KNOWS

I recently attended a workshop on financial aid. The speaker was discussing basic needs of financing for college and I took note of a few things as well as my own research that I felt would be beneficial for you to know when applying to college and applying for your financial aid.

Below is a new chart from www.fafsa.gov that lists STATE DEADLINE dates.

**IT IS VERY IMPORTANT THAT YOU FOLLOW THESE DATES AND FILE YOUR FAFSA (FREE APPLICATION FOR FEDERAL STUDENT AID) AS SOON AS POSSIBLE WITHOUT WAITING UNTIL THAT DATE.

*For example the state of Indiana requires everyone to have their FAFSA filed by March 10, no excuses. If FAFSA is not filed by March 1, then any college aid is lost.

State Student Financial Aid Deadlines

State deadlines may be earlier than the federal deadline.

TIP: State forms do not replace filling out the FAFSA. You must fill out the FAFSA to receive federal student aid.

Note: Date received means received by Federal Student Aid unless otherwise indicated.

State Deadlines
Alabama Check with your financial aid administrator
Alaska April 15, 2010 @
American Samoa Check with your financial aid administrator*
Arizona Check with your financial aid administrator
Arkansas For Academic Challenge – June 1, 2010 @
For Workforce Grant – check with your financial aid administrator
For Higher Education Opportunity Grant – June 1, 2010 (fall term) @; November 1, 2010 (spring term) @
California For initial awards – March 2, 2010 +*
For additional community college awards – September 2, 2010 – date postmarked +*
Colorado Check with your financial aid administrator
Connecticut February 15, 2010 #*
Delaware April 15, 2010 @
District of Columbia June 30, 2010 @#*
Federated States of Micronesia Check with your financial aid administrator*
Florida May 15, 2010 – date processed
Georgia Check with your financial aid administrator
Guam Check with your financial aid administrator*
Hawaii Check with you financial aid administrator*
Idaho Opportunity Grant – March 1, 2010 @#*
Illinois As soon as possible after January 1, 2010. Awards made until funds are depleted.
Indiana March 10, 2010 &
Iowa July 1, 2010 @
Kansas April 1, 2010 @#*
Kentucky March 15, 2010 &#
Louisiana July 1, 2010 @
Maine May 1, 2010 @
Marshall Islands Check with your financial aid administrator*
Maryland March 1, 2010 &
Massachusetts May 1, 2010 @#
Michigan March 1, 2010 &
Minnesota 30 days after term starts @
Mississippi MTAG and MESG Grants – September 15, 2010 @#
HELP Scholarship – March 31, 2010 @#
Missouri April 1, 2010 @#
Montana March 1, 2010 #&
Nebraska Check with your financial aid administrator*
Nevada Check with your financial aid administrator*
New Hampshire May 1, 2010 @
New Jersey 2009-2010 Tuition Aid Grant recipients – June 1, 2010 @
All other applications – October 1, 2010, for fall and spring terms @;
March 1, 2011, for spring term only @
New Mexico Check with your financial aid administrator*
New York May 1, 2011 @+*
North Carolina Check with your finanacial aid administrator
North Dakota March 15, 2010 &
Northern Mariana Islands Check with your financial aid administrator*
Ohio October 1, 2010 @
Oklahoma April 15, 2010 @#
Oregon OSAC scholarship – March 1, 2010
Oregon Opportunity Grant – check with your financial aid adminstrator
Palau Check with your financial aid administrator*
Pennsylvania All 2009-2010 State Grant recipients and all non-2009-2010 State Grant recipients in degree programs – May 1, 2010 @*
All other applicants – August 1, 2010 @*
Puerto Rico Check with your financial aid administrator
Rhode Island March 1, 2010 &#
South Carolina Tuition Grants – June 30, 2010 @
SC Commission on Higher Education – no deadline
South Dakota Check with your financial aid administrator*
Tennessee For State Grant – February 15, 2010 @#
For State Lottery – September 1, 2010 @#
Texas Check with your financial aid administrator*
U.S. Virgin Islands Check with your financial aid administrator*
Utah Check with your financial aid administrator
Vermont Check with your financial aid administrator*
Virginia Check with your financial aid administrator*
Washington Check with your financial aid administrator
West Virginia April 15, 2010 @#*
Wisconsin Check with your financial aid administrator
Wyoming Check with your financial aid administrator*

 * Additional form may be required. Contact your financial aid administrator or your state agency.
^ Applicants encouraged to obtain proof of mailing.
# For priority consideration, submit application by date specified.
@ Deadline by midnight, Central Daylight Time.
& Deadline by midnight, Central Standard Time.

 

Here are some of the basics you should know when it comes to financial aid, general aid (money) for college and terminology you should be aware of. This is a list I came up with and remains pretty consistent whether you’re looking at vocational, public, private or community college.

FINANCIAL AID:

  • There are two types:

Gift Aid: -Grants and -Scholarships

Self-help Aid:    -Loans  and  -Employment

*Most colleges and financial aid departments refer to two things that you should know regarding general financing.

  •     COA- Means Cost of Attendance- How much does it cost to go to college

 The cost of attendance covers HARD COSTS and SOFT COSTS. HARD COSTS are those things like tuition and room and board. SOFT COSTS are those things like books & supplies, transportation, laundry, and other living expenses (just to name a few).

**When asking a college about costs, most admissions people will provide you with the tuition and room and board. B, there are many other fees involved with attending many colleges and you should ask about those additional costs. Ask Financial Aid about the costs. They will everything out for you.

  •     EFC- Means Estimated Family Contribution-The minimum amount a family if expected to pay.

This is based on:

Student Income, Parent Income, Student Assets, Parent Assets, # of household members, # of household members attending college

  • Financial need is figured out when subtracting your cost of attendance to go to college minus the estimated family contribution: EFC – COA = Money needed when applying to FAFSA.

Use a college cost estimator at CollegeBoard or CollegeAnswer to figure out what it would cost.

  • TYPES OF AID AVAILABLE:

Outside scholarships         State Grants         Employers         Federal Grants                           College Scholarships         College Savings Plan         GI Bill         Loans

  • 3 WAYS TO APPLY FOR FINANCIAL AID, BASED ON SCHOOL:

1. Financial Aid meeting with FA Advisor at chosen college file necessary FAFSA forms electronically. Create a Pin Number and keep it.

2. Institutional Forms (college specific)

3. CSS Profile Form- this is required from some colleges. If they indicate this, don’t be nervous. It’s required by some states to have an additional profile. **This might or might not affect amount of aid.

A good piece of advice…and effective thing you can do throughout your financial aid application process is to keep in touch with your Financial Aid Advisor. Don’t call them too much, ball them to ask questions, discuss concerns, etc. They are there to help and financial aid will give you a straight answer.

This is a small list of the best basics you need for starting your financial aid process. Please respond back to me @ this post with further questions, concerns or comments you have regarding this topic.

I would love to continue a dialog so that I can provide a resource for all of you to attain all the needed information when it comes to financing college education.

My Success is Your Success,

Keith Lipke

Keith Lipke is a careers and college recruiter, coach, mentor and blogger at The Hope Chest. His passion is to educate, inspire, and give hope to young people who need it upon their search for the right career and college.

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