Virtual Financial Aid

Virtual financial aid for college presentation recordings available
Posted on 10/14/2020
Learn about college financial aid

The district recently held virtual presentations about the great opportunities for financial assistance for college and the importance of the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) and WASFA (Washington Application for State Financial Aid) financial aid forms.

Families can now view the recordings of those events in English and Spanish on the district’s YouTube channel.

Financial Aid FAQs 

Do student loans for parents affect the amount of money a child might get?

No. students receive loans based on individual approval. However, it may affect a parent plus loan.

Is there an age requirement for FASFA?

The requirement for completing the FAFSA or WASFA is the student must be in his or her senior year (or a high school graduate). 

If (male) child is graduating at 16 and not required to apply for selective service until 18?

The student would still register for selective service at 18 and not before. There's a question on the form that asks if student has registered for selective service. If the child is not 18 yet when the FAFSA/WASFA is complete, answer “no.”

How many of the grants can student apply for and be used? 

No limit. Students should apply for all of the Grants that they can qualify for and those that they’re not sure they qualify for (just in case).

Is FAFSA only for seniors who are 18?

Unfortunately, students have to be a graduating senior to apply for FAFSA, but they do not have to be 18.

Can my student use grants AND scholarships?

Yes.

Can you still apply to things that you don’t really qualify for?

We encourage you to apply for all grants and scholarships unless you are certain you do not qualify.

Is there a specific place we should go to for finding scholarships?

Each school has resources that provide scholarship information. Also, Washboard.org and CollegeNet.com are great resources.

Can we create an account at the federal student aid website even if you’re a junior?

No, not until your senior year. However, it’s good to know what information you will need in advance.

What if you apply to more than 10 schools?

You can only include up to 10 schools at one time on the FAFSA; however, you can go back and update your list of schools if you need to.

How soon or late will there be replies from any of the 10 schools on the FASFA in order to compare and decide on options?

The earlier you apply to colleges, the better. It could be within a week or a month. It depends on a lot of factors.

Is the process the same for Running Start students?

Yes. Running Start students are still considered freshman applicants to college and on the FAFSA/WASFA.

I am going to school (mother); does applying for my senior year daughter affect the FAFSA application?

No, parents attending college do not affect students’ financial aid. Financial aid is based on household income and number of siblings attending college.

After I get my AA my senior year, will the FAFSA will go towards the 4-year university I apply to?

Yes. The FAFSA can be used for any degree program, even advanced degrees.

Can Running Start students apply for financial aid?

Yes. Running Start seniors can apply for financial aid. Junior Running Start students aren't eligible to complete the FAFSA/WASFA until senior year.

What about IB students?

Yes, IB students may complete a FAFSA or WASFA in their senior year of high school.

Do Running Start students apply as freshman at the same time regular high school students?

Yes, for the FAFSA/WASFA. However, the colleges will determine if the student enters college as a sophomore or junior.

Can I still complete the FASFA if I go out of state?

Yes, the FAFSA is a national form.  WASFA is a state form specifically for in-state colleges in Washington state.

If a student is graduating Running Start in 2021, do they apply Oct. 1, 2020 or Oct. 1, 2021 after they graduate?

Students should complete the FAFSA/WASFA in October of their senior year.  So if a student is graduating high school in June of 2021, she should apply for the FAFSA/WASFA in October 2020 prior to graduation from high school.

 

 

A junior doing Running Start, is there any help to pay for tuition and fees?

 

Running start is a state-funded program to provide high school students the opportunity to take college courses for free or a much reduced fee. There is no additional state support for Running Start. However, Running Start students receive all the same financial aid opportunities for college as other students upon graduation from high school.

 

Does the student need a different "who am I...." essay for each college app? 

 

Yes, but students can create one essay that can be modified based on each college’s requirements. It’s good to have at least an outline of an admissions essay that can be used to prepare an essay for each college.

 

Can college bound scholarships be used at out of state schools?

 

No. College Bound is only based in Washington State colleges.

 

Can a Running Start student use their college bound scholarship when applying for colleges?

 

Yes, as long as they still meet the eligibility requirements for the scholarship.

 

Running Start students cannot apply for financial aid until they have their high school diploma, right?

 

Running Start seniors CAN apply for financial aid during your senior year prior to high school graduation.

 

As a senior, what can I do to have a higher chance to get scholarships or financial aid?

 

Apply!  Scholarships are awarded for a variety of reasons, so do your research and find out what you may qualify for. Apply for them all unless you know for sure you do not qualify. Not all scholarships are GPA or income based.

 

I'm a senior in an IB school so what do you think that I should focus on first for finances and colleges?

 

Start with the FAFSA or WASFA in October, and look for scholarships. College applications generally start a bit later, but research colleges now to have a good idea of where you might like to attend. Some college applications start as early as October for early admissions.

 

Is there a schedule for any senior students regarding FAFSA information?

 

Take a look at https://readysetgrad.wa.gov/ for a sample timeline. For FAFSA/WASFA, the earlier the better to complete the application. Application window opens Oct. 1.

 

When we apply for the FAFSA, are we including the schools we are applying to in the application for FAFSA?

 

Yes. You may enter up to 10 colleges in the financial aid application.

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