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Funding Education After High School

FAFSA-Free Application for Federal Student Aid

Federal Student Aid, a part of the U.S. Department of Education, is the largest provider of student financial aid in the nation. At the office of Federal Student Aid, our 1,200 employees help make college education possible for every dedicated mind by providing more than $150 billion in federal grants, loans, and work-study funds each year to more than 13 million students paying for college or career school. We are proud to sponsor millions of American minds pursuing their educational dreams.

1.  Fill out the FAFSA as soon as possible.  Some need-based aid is limited in numbers and available on a first come first serve basis for those who qualify.  For instance, a university could have a limited amount of grant aid.  Applying late could cost you that money.

2.  Select schools: Always select schools that are being considered on the form.  Otherwise, the information won't arrive at the colleges who need it.  Amend the FAFSA form online if school choices change.

3.  Fill out the special circumstances forms when needed.  Whether you're applying for next year or are already in college, you need to fill out special circumstances form if your income changes due to a number of reasons including a medical situation, a layoff, or a salary reduction.

4.  Practice filling out the FAFSA on the FAFSA4caster site from the department of education as early as middle school.  It's designed to roughly estimate financial aid years in advance.

5.  Teens should follow up with schools to make sure information is received and to check on financial aid availability. Bonus: you may find out about a scholarship you previously didn't know about during the phone call.

Net Price Calculators Can Help Estimate College Costs, Avoiding the Risk Associated with Unanticipated Expenses.

Choosing universities with the lowest listed tuition prices sometimes can cost you more money.  A private school with tuition that's four times a state school's could offer enough scholarships and university grants to become the cheaper alternative.  How do you find out which schools offer the best financial aid packages before applying for college?  Use net price calculators available on most college websites to estimate what you would pay based on individual circumstances.

1.  Narrow college choices down to ten by factors such as majors, campus size and internship placement.  Teens should visit with their high school counselor to start the process of college selection and career exploration.

2.  Students should request information from each school on what's important to them.  For instance, they can and should call the career center to ask about graduate employment rate.

3.  Visit the websites of your top 10 college choices and enter information such as family income and number of children in college.  To find the net price calculator on a university website, enter net price calculator into the search box on the school's homepage.

4.  Call financial aid offices at the top 5 choices to see if there are any changes in grant awards for the year the student will be attending.  Available funds change, so you want to make sure you factor in the most recent information into your family's application decisions.

5.  Use the Net price calculator as a baseline.  Teens could also qualify for merit-based educational assistance.

Dysart Scholarships Information 

AZ Earn to Learn - Are you an Arizona student who needs more money for college, plan on attending ASU, NAU or UofA, or need help through the whole process? If so AZ Earn to Learn can get you face to face financial coaching, build financial skills through training, college readiness training and support, and possibility to re-enroll for a 2nd year!  Contact Monica Crespo at 602-615-2683  for more information.

For more scholarships, go to Scholarships