Paying For College

Paying for College

  • Start the process early. Ask for admission, financial aid information, and application forms from the colleges that you are interested in attending.
  • Learn more about financial aid. Find out what your options are. Check with your guidance office for information on local scholarships. Attend financial aid nights at your high school.
  • Attend College Goal Sunday in early February. This session is designed to help families complete the FAFSA. Call the ICPAC Hotline to find out a location near you.
  • Call the ICPAC Financial Aid Awareness Week Hotline (1-800-992-2076) during the week following College Goal Sunday. Financial aid advisors will be available to help answer the questions you might have about completing the FAFSA.
  • Between January 1 and March 1 complete your federal and state tax forms. Have your parents do the same. You will need this information to complete the FAFSA.
  • Between January 1 and March 1, fill out the FAFSA!
  • Make copies of ALL your applications and information by their stated deadlines. Get a certificate of mailing from the post office. Do not send your forms certified mail; this may slow down the receipt of your information. A certificate of mailing will verify that your information was sent on a particular date.
  • Respond to any requests for additional information quickly! Incomplete, late or inaccurate information can cause you to miss out on financial aid.
  • It will take a few weeks for your FAFSA to be processed. You will receive a Student Aid Report (SAR) when it has been processed. Review your SAR carefully and make sure that you have responded correctly to all the necessary questions. If you need to, make corrections and send the SAR back to the federal processor to be corrected. You will then receive a revised SAR with the corrected data.
  • Read all financial aid notification and bursar notification letters carefully. These letters will give you more details on the financial aid you are eligible to receive, deadlines for paying tuition and other fees, and so on. Don’t set them aside! Read them as soon as you receive them. The FAFSA priority date is March 1.