This is part of a sponsored collaboration with The College Board and DiMe Media. However, all opinions expressed are my own.
We have just about every age group right now at our house. I have a son who has a great job with the Board of Education, a teething princess who’s about to start walking and a high school senior who works full time and is about to graduate early with a high GPA (I had to throw that in there because I’m really impressed at how effortlessly he pulls everything off). Back when I was their age and looking into what college I wanted to attend, I was on my own and I was clueless as to how the process worked. To be honest, my focus wasn’t where it should’ve been. Although, it was for good reason. I had Evan right after I graduated high school, so I was juggling a much heavier, cuter load than the average person my age. But if I had these three important tips for getting financial aid for college and the tools that are readily available now, I’m positive it would have been easier for me to navigate.
Even though I made it out okay, and I have a job that I absolutely love, I don’t exactly want that sort of struggle for my kids. I learned that a little preparation goes a long way and seeing how focused my older boys are, I know we’re already a few steps ahead! There’s really no reason for any student not to seek any help! Did you know that most full-time college students will receive some type of financial aid? I sure didn’t, and it motivated us to really do our homework and learn everything we needed to. Below are three important tips for getting financial aid for college that we’ll be putting into action and hopefully help those who may have college-bound children as well.
- Get a jump start on filing your fafsa (you can apply online at fafsa.gov ) and other financial aid application that may also have early deadlines (some of these even require that you have filled out FAFSA first click here for a easy to follow instructions). **Keep in mind that you will need to create a FSA ID beforehand.
- Search and compare colleges using BigFuture.There you can find scholarships and really get a good understanding of financial aid (so crucial considering theres almost $184 billion in financial aid available), and really priotize and organize the entire application process.
- Download and put the helpful CollgeGo mobile app to work! this app will guide students through every essential step in the long college application process (trust me its overwhelming, but manageable). It allows students to interact using fun games and videos and even has a search feature to help guide them through their journey.
FYI: College Board has also created Spanish language resources for parents and their families in order to help them plan for their children’s college.
Take the first step. Complete the FAFSA today!