The 2017-2018 FAFSA (FREE Application for Federal Student Aid) will be available beginning October 1, 2017.  This form takes income information and tax information from your past year's taxes.  This form uses a general formula that the Federal Government set up to determine your EFC (expected family contribution).  This number is then sent to all colleges/universities you are applying to and then financial aid offices try to create aid packages that cover the costs outside of the EFC.  It should be completed sooner rather than later before college funds run out.

 

Students and families can go to the FAFSA website to begin the process.  The first thing to do is gather all necessary documents and tax return forms. Second, you will need to create an FSA ID.  This will help in the process because not only will creating an FSA ID pre-populate information to your FAFSA once you're ready to actually fill out the form, but you will also need this to use as your electronic signature before you can submit. 

 

FAFSA Quickfacts:

  • Parents are generally expected to contribute approximately 5% of income, but students are assessed at closer to 35%.  These amounts together make up part of the EFC.
  • You can begin to complete the FAFSA beginning as early as October 1st of senior year.
  • You can complete an estimater to find out EFC prior to senior year.  Estimater can be found at www.fafsa4caster.ed.gov
  • FAFSA is a free form.  If you get to the end and they ask for a credit card, you completed the WRONG form.  There are fake FAFSA sites.  Make sure to go to the government site for the FAFSA.
  • The FAFSA can be completed before you have the current year's tax information, this is called prior-prior year.

Parent Financial Aid Information Session:

Each fall the SHS School Counseling Department hosts a parent night.  It's very important parents attend this session because SHS counselors do not advise on the financial aid process.  This is the only evening event that will be held to assist with the process. Date is yet to be determined for 2017.

 

Financial Aid One-on-One Meetings:

Mrs. Blackwell is a financial aid advisor from CONNTAC who works with students regarding the financial aid process and filing the FAFSA.

Meetings can be scheduled through Ms. Forlenzo in guidance.  

Appointments book fast, so please make sure to schedule your appointment atleast one week in advance.  

Appointments are taken for 8:30am, 9:00am, 9:30am, 10:00am, 10:30am and 11:00am. 

Students are encouraged to schedule an appointment with Mrs. Blackwell.  She will work with you on completing the FAFSA.  The FAFSA is a form that must be filled out in order to qualify for any financial aid money, including loans.  

Once your appointment is scheduled you will need to bring the following items with you to your scheduled appointment:

  1. Recent tax return from 2016 (1040 or 1040A)
  2. Social Security # and parent(s) as well
  3. Parents birthdates
  4. Parent marriage dates/divorce dates
  5. Copy of Green Card if a non-U.S. citizen
  6. Completed top half of CONNTAC application form
  7. FSA ID, which must be completed through www.fafsa.ed.gov or by clicking on the FAFSA link on the mainpage of Naviance
    • BOTH THE STUDENT AND PARENT(S)/GUARDIAN(S) NEED AN FSA ID

 

Brief Overview of College Costs and Financial Aid (Click to view power point)

 

 

 

The CSS Profile is another form for financial aid that select private colleges and universities use to get a more in-depth view of the student's financial needs.  This form should be filled out around October/November of the student's senior year.  The form is not a federal form, but one provided by the CollegeBoard.  This form can be found at https://profileonline.collegeboard.com/prf/index.jsp

 

CSS Profile Quickfacts:

  • Done through the college board
  • Costs $ to send to each college/university
  • Must be completed early
  • Requires a lot of additional information about parent/student
  • Both parents, if separated, are required to complete (unlike FAFSA where only the parent that the student lives with 51% of the time completes)

College & Affordability:

See how students, institutions and the public pay for higher education here.