It is FAFSA® time

Preparation is the key to filling out this important application for financial aid.

Preparation is the key to filling out this important application for financial aid. For those of you completing the application for the first time, Michigan State Univeristy Extension recomends two websites that can be extremely helpful and will give you detailed information on how to successfully fill out the form. 

The Department of Education’s Office of Federal Student Aid  is a great resource for answers to questions about federal student aid and has a link to the FASFA® form. Several months ago the FSA ID replaced the Federal Student Aid Pin. Just like the Pin the ID gives access to electronically sign the FASFA® or a Master Promissory Note for a federal student loan. 

The Michigan Department of Treasury-Student Fincial Serivces Bureau is another great resource. During the month of February, they will be hosting 30 MI College Goal events across the state. At these events, experts will be available to assist completing the FAFSA®. 

To make this job go smoothly it is important to have all the necessary documents. The application will ask you to use income information from the year prior to the school year you are applying for financial aid. As an example, if you are applying for financial aid for 2016-17 school year, you will need to use income tax information from 2015. As soon as you and/or your family have completed the 2015 income taxes, complete and submit the FAFSA® application. 

For first time applicants, it is important to know what schools you are interested in attending. Most schools use the FAFSA® to determine what finacial aid package they will offer you. The online application allows you to list up to ten schools and the paper application allows up to four. It is recommended that if you have a state school as one of your options to list them first. Michigan’s deadline for priority consideration of state aid is March 1Typically by mid-spring, the schools you listed will send you a letter or email with what type of financial aid they will provide to you if you attend their school school.

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