FAFSA, RDS and more!
Two financial aid documents must be completed:
1. FAFSA-Opens December 2023
2. Residency Determination Service - open now. Must be completed to receive in-state tuition.
What is the difference in FAFSA and RDS?
The FAFSA is the FREE financial aid application to receive grants and loans. Each college is given a certain amount of grants (free money) to distribute. Once the money is gone, all they can offer are loans. Apply as early as possible to increase your chances of receiving grants. You do NOT have to have your taxes completed for this year in order to submit the FAFSA. All families should apply, regardless of income. Stay tuned for more details.
Helpful FAFSA Links:
You are allowed to contact the financial aid office at a university to negotiate the financial aid package. If you feel like you did not receive enough money, it is recommended that you do the following.
1. Understand the award letter. Note how much unmet need you have left
2. Find out whether the college has a protocol in place to negotiate. Call or look at their website
3. Be professional when asking for them to negotiate whether it is on the phone or in a letter. If the school is your top choice and the only thing standing in your way is the financial aid package, kindly tell them that. Send them a copy of your highest offer letter to see if the school will match it. If you have received any additional awards, high grades/test scores, include this info.
4. Make a compelling case. if a parent has lost a job since you completed the FAFSA, explain this. Other changes in health, family expenses, divorce, etc. should all be communicated.