J.K. of Lake Success, NY writes:
on our college financial aid applications and notice that there are all
kinds of deadlines, in addition to all kinds of forms from so many
sources. We've even come across something called "Priority
Deadline." How do we find out what these deadlines are, as well as the
best possible sources for aid, giving ourselves the best shot at money
for college?The College Whisperer™ responds:
And there you were, applications for admission submitted, thinking the pressure was off. Home free, right?
not quite. Assuming you need money to help pay for tuition, room and
board (and who doesn't these days?), the race is still on, the clock is
ticking, and, yes, deadlines loom.
With respect to financial aid, we've been encouraging you to file early, and, when searching for scholarship dollars, often.
Yes, make hay of those scholarship search engines and apply, apply, apply.
But what about money from the feds, the state and even the colleges themselves?
You've got to file FAFSA!Step One:
Complete and submit FAFSA online
. [Don't wait to file your tax returns. You can submit "Corrections to FAFSA"
after you file your returns.]
Complete and submit applications for State aid, such as New York's Tuition Assistance Program
For those schools requiring the College Board
based fin aid app,
complete and submit the CSS Profile
(as well as related forms, as may be
called for, such as IDOC
and the "Noncustodial Profile"
Complete and submit college-specific forms, as may be required by the schools you have applied to.
Search and actually apply for scholarships and grants, both
institutional and private. [Nothing beats paying for college with other
Now, about those deadlines...
Yes, there are federal (FAFSA) deadlines
, state deadlines
and even college deadlines, spread out from February through June of
the following year. [Be sure to check with the admissions/financial aid
offices of the colleges you've applied to for the specific filing
Then there's the so-called "Priority Deadline,"
can best be described as the start of the race to get the most buck for
In essence, the priority deadline
is the date
to apply by to be considered for and have the best chance for all
aid. Some aid is very limited, so meeting the priority deadline gives you
more of a chance if you are eligible. This is not just for
institutional aid but also for some limited federal aid such as SEOG
, Work Study, or Perkins loans
(all have very limited funding).
Missing the priority deadline means you get considered for what, if any,
money may remain after those that meet the deadline have been awarded
In other words, submit your completed
the priority deadline
to assure consideration for the best financial aid package you may qualify for.
the priority deadline filing date for your school? Apply anyway, and do
it right away. While the early bird may well get the worm, there's
usually enough in the pot for the second mouse to get at least some of the
cheese. [Love those mixed mataphors, don't you? ;-)]
What about a date designated simply as deadline
Well, typically a deadline means just that -- last day to file before
you're plumb out of luck. Should you file anyway, even past deadline? Absolutely!
You may get nothing. You may get crumbs. Or, who knows, you may get
lucky. And remember, there are no deadlines for certain forms of
financial aid, such as Pell Grants
and Stafford loans
. [Though you will need to file in a timely
manner in order to secure funds to cover upcoming college costs such as
tuition, room and board.]
Keep in mind that institutional aid
(money awarded directly by the colleges) is often limited, being awarded
to qualified students on a first-apply, first-to receive basis. This
includes, in most instances, merit aid, need-based aid, and federal Work Study
sure what type of financial aid you may qualify for or exactly how to go about applying for it? Check with your
, guidance counselor or college financial aid office. And be sure to puruse the blogposts right here at The College Whisperer™
for insights, tips and invaluable information on scholarships, grants and other resources for funding your college education.
to popular belief, there really is quite a bit of money out there to
help students (and their parents) pay for college and related expenses.
You just have to know where to look for gold and how to mine that mother
Plan. Prepare. PREVAIL!Confused about financial aid? Stumped by FAFSA? Confounded by CSS-Profile or other proprietary financial aid forms? COLLEGE CONNECTION
understands. We can help you prepare, complete and submit ALL required
financial aid forms, including the FAFSA. We'll work with you
in-person, by telephone, online and/or via Skype, not just to get the
financial aid forms done, but to get them done correctly. DON'T MISS OUT ON MONEY FOR COLLEGE. Contact COLLEGE CONNECTION today! 516-345-8766.The College Whisperer™ is the Trademark of COLLEGE CONNECTION, Official Sponsor of College Admission Success. The road to college begins at COLLEGE CONNECTION! Whether you are applying to college, planning for college, paying for college or simply thinking about college, COLLEGE CONNECTION can help! Call TODAY for a FREE telephone consultation. 516-345-8766
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