The FAFSA is available October 1st, Only 20% of Parents are Aware of this

A new study conducted by Discover Student Loans related to the FAFSA found the following facts:

     Nearly 1-in-3 parents have never talked to their child about the FAFSA, and another 22% have discussed it just once or twice.  

o    30% of parents said applying for scholarships, grants, loans and other forms of financial aid is causing their child anxiety. 

·         Just 20% of parents know the FAFSA becomes available in October 

o    Slightly more than half (51%), think the FAFSA is available year-round – something that’s been relatively consistent over the last three years.  

·         More than a third (36%) of parents, believe it takes 1 to 3 hours to complete the FAFSA, when in reality, most families complete it in less than 1 hour.  

·         More than 4 in 10 families who do not plan to complete the FAFSA, say it’s because they don’t believe they’ll qualify for federal aid. However, 86% of first-time, full-time students at public 4-year colleges were granted aid.  

Given the FAFSA offers access to the largest source of financial aid to help pay for college, these misconceptions are important to address. This is a great reminder that letting your students and their parents know about the pending October 1st date when the FAFSA will be be open is a great practice.