The U. S. Department of Education’s website for the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, www.fafsa.ed.gov, and telephone help line, 1 -800-4-FEDAID are two of the best sources for financial aid information and answers to your financial aid questions.
1. What is the Free Application for Federal Student Aid?
2. What types of student financial aid are available through FAFSA?
- Grants are federal and state money awarded to students for post–secondary tuition, housing and expenses. The Pell Grant is the largest of the federal grants and eligibility for the Pell Grant may qualify the student for other university funds, Federal (www.studentaid.ed.gov) and State aid (www.hhloans.com ).
- Loans may be Federal or State, must be paid back and may accrue interest. Federal loans include: Subsidized Stafford Loan, Parent/Plus Loan, Unsubsidized Stafford Loan and the Perkins Loan.
- Federal Work–Study is a job, usually on campus, allowing students to earn money.
3. Besides the Pell Grant, what are other available federal grants?
- Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG) for undergraduates with exceptional financial need and Federal Pell Grant eligible.
- TEACH Grant–Available to students interested in becoming educators and who are willing to sign a commitment to teach.
- Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grant–for students who are not Pell eligible, whose parent or guardian died as a result of military service in Iraq or Afghanistan after 9/11.
4. Who and when should the FAFSA be completed?
5. Is there a deadline for submitting the FAFSA?
An application is considered early when filed in the February/March timeframe, unless your college/university has an earlier deadline.
6.What are the advantages to submitting my FAFSA early?
- You will meet the college/university financial aid deadline date. Deadlines are very strict.
- You will be notified of any additional documents needed. Therefore, you will be able to complete and submit all financial aid documents your college may request in a timely manner (example: verification).
- Your award letter or on-line award offer is made and you will be able to accept their award early.
- Distribution of money from small and large federal and state sources is ensured. Small sources such as the Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG) and State monies are depleted early and are not replenished.
7. What is a Personal Identification Number (PIN)?
8. What is the PIN used for?
9. If my parent has a PIN because he, she or my sibling went to college, can this PIN be used?
10. What if my parent or I forget or lost an already issued PIN?
11. What information & documents are needed to complete the FAFSA?
- Student’s and parents’ social security numbers
- Student’s alien registration number if applicable
- Student’s and parents’ exact dates of birth
- Student’s and parents’ previous year IRS tax forms and W2s or link into IRS
- Student’s and parents’ untaxed income information (e.g. child support)
- Student’s and parents’ other financial information (e.g. business net worth, farm assets, etc.)