Completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid
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A student needs to complete FAFSA (or Free Application for Federal Student Aid) to receive financial aid toward their education advancements in college. After your application is processed by the Department of Education, further information (or instructions) on your aid are provided to you. Here are some tips that should help you complete the FAFSA worry-free:
- complete the FAFSA as early as possible (1st of each year) as the aid is awarded first-come first-served basis.
- estimate your tax information before you have your tax returns completed
- write explanation for any of your special financial situation (if this is not reflected or you think it cannot be adequately reflected alone on the application)
- Keep the following information handy:
- Your driver’s license or state-issued identification card
- Your social security card
- Alien Registration (Green Card), if applicable
- Sources and amounts of income earned. Have latest W2 forms handy. If you have federal income tax returns completed, you may use that. But don’t wait for completion of the taxes to complete your application. Estimate, if you don’t have completed tax returns.
- your bank statement(s)
- Business-related documents
- Records of stocks, bonds and investments
- Records of child support paid
- Records of untaxed income
- Fill the application exactly as it appears on your documents. For instance, provide your full name as it appears on your social security card versus your nick name.
- Have the federal school code(s) for each college you want to attend. See http://www.fafsa.ed.gov/FOTWWebApp/FSLookupServlet for more information
Below are some select federal school codes for schools in Maryland. Please see the Department of Education's website for up-to-date information.
|School name||Location||Federal school code|
|Aaron’s Academy of Beauty||Waldorf||030649|
|All-State Career School||Baltimore||034933|
|Allegany College of Maryland||Cumberland||002057|
|Baltimore International College||Baltimore||016376|
|Bowie State University||Bowie||002062|
|Carroll Community College||Westminster||031007|
|Coppin State University||Baltimore||002068|
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Random educational tips
1. How do you make your assignments easier for yourself? By knowing or practicing more about the subject. If it is a math class, try solving problems and perhaps more of them than required. If you are asked to do odd-numbered problems, try even-numbered problems as well, for instance. This will help you do better on the exam. The more you know and more you work with the class material, easier it will become to complete exams, projects, presentations, and other assignments.
2. Beside student loans, there are other options for students to pay for college. Many schools offer financial aid, scholarships, and work-study programs to cover some or most of the college costs. If this is not enough (and usually is not), considering a part-time or full-time job on or off-campus is also the norm.