Student Financial Aid
If you are a student heading toward post-secondary education in the next year then you need to become familiar with the FAFSA, the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. This is the form you use to apply for much of the financial aid that is available. This form should be in every high school guidance counselorís office and also in the financial aid offices of most vocational-technical schools, colleges, and universities.
The forms for a specific academic year are usually not available before the November preceding that academic year. Be sure you are completing the form that applies to the academic year for which you are applying for aid. And while we encourage completing the form as early as possible, take care that your form is not post-marked before January 1 of the academic year for which you are applying. Using the wrong form or mailing it in too early will disqualify your application.
The FAFSA requires information about the income and assets of both the student and the studentís parents. Even if you or your parents do not have your income tax forms completed, fill out the FAFSA using tax estimates and get it mailed as soon after January 1 as you can. Later you will be asked for specific income information from your tax forms, but this puts your student aid application at the front of the line and many schools dole out financial aid on a first-come, first-served basis to qualifying students.