Lead the Horse to Water

The new award year 2019-2020 is just around the corner. Students haven’t had to wait until January to complete their FAFSAs for four years now. FAFSA applications open in October, but many students choose to wait to complete their applications.

So why are students waiting to apply for aid?

person holding coins
Photo by rawpixel / Unsplash

  • Students figure they aren’t eligible for aid.
  • Students don’t believe they need it. After all, they don’t owe any money yet, right?
  • Students are afraid of paying off loans for the rest of their lives. The media has blasted college debt stories almost as much as the Kiki challenge.
  • Students just don’t understand how or where to apply.
  • Students don’t want to be bothered with the ‘work’. I’m sure there are more exciting things to do at the moment, especially with Halloween at the end of the month.

What can you do to lead them to the water and make them drink?

Educate your students about the mystudentaid app now available on Google Play or Apple’s App Store. Letting students know they can complete the FAFSA on their phone is like telling them there is free pizza in the common area.

Money! Statistically those who apply earliest get the most aid. Make sure to let your students know this important fact.

Use students to corral students into the process. The Be A Leader Foundation http://www.bealeaderfoundation.org/ recruits college students to help other students move forward in the process.