This post is about the FAFSA® and myFutureNC. This shop has been compensated by Inmar Intelligence and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #aimhigherNC #NCFirstInFAFSA #FAFSA
When I moved to North Carolina nearly 21 years ago, one of the things that excited me was all the options for college. With a community college system that is 58-colleges strong and 16 UNC system universities, I had so many options before me. I was a junior in high school when we moved here, which is about the time high school students start thinking about where they want to apply. One piece of the application process is to complete the FAFSA® (Free Application for Federal Student Aid), which can help students with college costs. Today, I want to share how the FAFSA® can help you!
When I graduated from high school, the whole college application process was overwhelming to me. When I started college, I wasn’t even sure what I wanted to do with my life! I started out as a transfer student in the Associate in Arts transfer program at my community college. It allows students to take general education requirements and then transfer them to an NC public college or university. I started out at Wayne CC and transferred to ECU.
There are so many pieces to the process — application, financial aid, scores, tuition, and fees. It can be a daunting process! One major barrier is the financial aspect, and that’s where the FAFSA® can help you. When I completed my FAFSA®, I was admittedly very nervous. I had tons of questions going on in my head — what if I don’t qualify? what will I do if I don’t? what are my options? Rest assured, that are so many options for student aid. Even if you don’t qualify for a grant, there are options for loans and work-study.
One of the most important pieces of advice regarding the FAFSA® is to apply as early as possible! If you wait to apply, you can miss out on beneficial financial aid. Some of the federal aid is on a first-come, first-serve basis. The earlier you complete the application, the better. Also, it’s super important to complete even if you think you won’t qualify or won’t be taking out a loan. Financial aid also includes scholarships, grants, and work-study opportunities.
myFutureNC is another important piece of the process, as they are a non-profit that is championing the statewide attainment goal, as 67% of jobs require education after college. myFutureNC is a statewide non-profit organization that works to connect leaders in the education, business, and government sectors to focus on educational attainment. Increasing FAFSA® completion is a key goal in North Carolina’s efforts to increase citizens who have college credentials. FAFSA® is a huge part of that because completing the FAFSA® is a good predictor of college success and completion.
When I completed my FAFSA®, I actually did both a loan and a work-study program! Later, when I transferred to a university I also got a scholarship through financial aid. It was great, and my school’s financial aid office at our local community college helped me so much. I specifically remember the director of Financial Aid was the kindest person and walked me through the steps. Your financial aid office is a wealth of information. You can seek advice from your local community college financial aid offices who help students just like you every single day!
If you have any questions, I am more than happy to answer them. Where are you in the college application process? Have you filled out the FAFSA® yet? Visit CFNC.org to get started.