Financial aid: Don’t do it alone

FAFSA 

By: Alexa Nelson

One of the most confusing things about the college application process is figuring out how to pay for your education. The stress doesn’t end once you start attending college, though, because every year the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) rears its ugly head. The application is always a struggle, and if you do it too late, it can result in problems down the road. It can be frustrating and difficult to get government aid for the school year. Luckily, the state of Massachusetts is here to help us successfully complete the task with a program called “FAFSA DAY”.

FAFSA Day is an opportunity for students and their families to be guided through the financial aid application process by experts. College Goal Sunday describes the event as “a non-profit program…staffed by volunteer financial aid and higher education professionals available to provide families one-on-one assistance.” For 9 years, volunteers have helped students of all ages – high school, college and adult students – apply for federal and state financial aid, which includes grants, scholarships and loans. Over 10,000 students have been served during FAFSA Day events.

FItchburg’s FAFSA Day will be held in the Hammond Building at 1pm on January 27th. Before you attend, make sure to bring a few things. You will need your: FAFSA Pin (www.pin.ed.gov),Social Security Number, Driver’s License number, most recent federal tax return, most recent W-2 or year-end pay stub, untaxed income records, bank statement(s), and business or investment records. If you aren’t a U.S Citizen, then your Alien Registration Card is needed. If you were born before January 1, 1990, you do not need to bring your parent’s tax forms. If not, make sure to bring each of the documents listed above in your parent’s name as well. You can register for your FAFSA Day at FAFSAday.org, but it’s not necessary. Simply show up with the aforementioned documents and someone will help you get started. If you don’t attend in Fitchburg you can check out the website for other locations – FAFSA Day is being held all over Massachusetts on the 27tth. Good luck!

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