FACT: Applying for financial aid is probably one of the easiest ways that you can win some FREE money. If you need financial aid to help you pay for your college education, it is definitely worth the time to complete as many scholarship and financial aid applications as you possibly can.
This myth is divided into two parts:
- Complicated: First, I want to address the myth that it’s complicated. To apply for financial aid, most colleges only require that you complete the FAFSA. Most of the information the FAFSA requires is already available on your parents’ federal income tax returns. This is why you and your parents should complete your income tax returns early. The online FAFSA application will even allow you to download your tax information into your FAFSA. The FAFSA website will walk you through the entire process, which is very easy. Colleges will use your FAFSA information to determine your eligibility for federal student aid, state aid and school-sponsored financial aid.
If you complete and file the FAFSA online, you can enter the information in a single sitting, or save your answers and complete it on another day. Some colleges may require that you complete the CSS/Financial Aid Profile Form and other applications.
And financial aid and scholarship applications typically request the same information such as your complete contact information, educational background, extracurricular activities, college plans and career goals. So the process of applying for financial aid is not complicated.
Especially if you complete the Student Workbook which helps you document all of this information. After completing most parts of the Student Workbook, you’ll be able to complete all of your scholarship applications in a timely manner.
- Time-consuming: It is a fact that you must put in a lot of effort to search and apply for scholarships and financial aid. However, let’s take a look at how time consuming and complicated it will be for you to save, maybe, $10,000 on your own by working a part-time job, since you are a high school student.
Let’s say that you started working a part-time job, paying you minimum wage of $8 per hour, and you’re only scheduled to work 20/week. It will take you nearly 1,250 hours or 63 weeks to earn $10,000, which will ultimately take you over a year and a half to earn this money. This does not take into consideration taxes taken out of each check.
Now compare working 1,250 hours to spending a few hours each week to completing several scholarship applications each week.
Working a part-time job is more time consuming compared to the few months throughout your senior year, it will take you to search and apply for scholarships and financial aid, which could lead to you possibly receiving thousands of dollars in FREE money.