Navigating Financial Aid Deadlines

Learn how to keep track of national and school-specific deadlines in order to get the best financial aid possible.

Date 07/29/2021
Duration 58:21

Webinar Transcription

2021-07-29 Navigating Financial Aid Deadlines

[00:00:00] Oh, hi everyone. Oh, sorry. Hi everyone. Welcome to CollegeAdvisor’s webinar on Navigating Financial Aid Deadlines. To orient everyone with the webinar timing, we’ll start off with a presentation. Then answer your questions in a live Q and a on the sidebar. You can download our slides and you can start submitting your questions in the Q and a tab.

Now let’s meet our.

Um, okay. Sorry. I was like waiting to see if the slide, the next slide was about me before I learned, so hi everyone. My name is Ramona. Um, I’m a current senior at Harvard and I’m studying art film and visual studies. Um, but I have a lot of experience navigating financial aid, especially doing it alone. Um, so that’s why I’m here to help you guys today.

And if you have any questions at any time during the presentation, feel free to put them in the chat and we’ll answer them at the end of the video. Um, but we’re going to start off with the poles. If you guys could fill that out really quickly, we just kind of want to get a sense of, [00:01:00] um, where everybody is since financial aid deadlines, like really sort of differ depending on like what grades.

So how’s Harvard. It’s a low-key. No, my Iowa. So I started taking piano lessons because I like have always wanted to learn piano. And my teacher asked me the same thing cause they, and I was like, girl, like I haven’t been there in two years. I don’t remember. Um, because I really just went there for the wine, came back home because of like Ms.

Rona. And then, you know, I’m going back in the fall. So. Well Z, um, it’s pretty good. And there’s a very generous financial aid policy, which is also like what I’m going to talk about later. Um, thank you for asking, how are you? Like, how’s your transition fan, like back from, you know, like during Corona time and things, um, going back to if the code for Cornell and.

We just, I had two weeks before I moved. So it’s about to be a scrambled two weeks. Oh my God. Yeah, I know. Don’t forget your shower shoes. I was packing and I was like, where wear my flip flops. [00:02:00] We, we don’t need shower shoes these days.

Oh, Cornell. Why did you wait with me? So, um, okay, so we got a good idea of your grades. So we have one freshman, once five, um, juniors and mostly seniors with their being 13 and then one other. So I’m assuming that’s. Okay. Okay. Well, thanks. Welcome. And for the freshmen and sophomore year, you guys like thank you so much for coming there is important financial aid stuff, um, for like classes and lower years.

And for you seniors, I’m so glad they’re being active because the deadlines are gonna start coming up this fall. Um, and also for the other, um, maybe I think I put other instead of like do this later. So like, Ooh, that might be be, um, but get into the presentation. Thank you so much for spine. Okay. So the first thing, um, is when is a good time to start thinking about financial aid and college, and because you’re all here, I assume that’s like a sign that you’ve already started thinking about it, which is really great.

But, um, for those of you who are seniors, [00:03:00] financial aid is really important to think about before you even start applying, because a big factor of whether you want to attend a school, not can be. Whether or not you can afford attending. Um, so if, if cost is a huge concern for you, this means this can mean that like you sort of have to like shift your college lists to finding schools that, um, say they offer 100% of scholarships for like demonstrated need, um, which we’ll go over these terms later.

Or, um, the colleges, if, if you feel that you don’t qualify for need based scholarships and you might want to look into colleges that have specific merit scholarships, um, Or this could also mean looking into like your local state university, because in-state tuition plus like your state, um, financial aid tends to be very generous and more affordable.

So the right time to start thinking about financial aid for college is before you go to college, um, and are like, have to pay for it because they hand you that receipt. And you’re like, oh, I really should’ve thought about this before, before I, you know, signed on. Um, so that’s really. Um, yeah, the worst feeling is finding out you get into a [00:04:00] school, but then you can’t go.

Which literally happened to me. Um, stay tuned for the Storytime, not click. They laid me down in the video. But yeah, while this means that you should think about financial aid during your junior year during your senior fall, um, you can think about it as early as sophomore year or even freshman year, because there are like big name scholarships that have deadlines before you even hit senior year.

So for instance, um, I don’t know if any of you guys have heard of the QuestBridge scholarship, but there’s a deadline to become like a QuestBridge prep school or your sophomore year, and then like nationally. Or junior year, I think. And then, um, QuestBridge finalist, like early senior year and the national merit scholarship, like that happens to me when you take your PSA T um, and those are all, like, they’re all big names that can help you sort of pay for college and they offer big scholarships.

So it’s important to start thinking about it before you even start applying to college. Um, and if you have it and you’re like starting to apply to college, don’t worry. You’re totally okay. And then the first steps to finding the best financial aid possible. So there are a few [00:05:00] terms that you guys might come across.

Um, the first thing is whether a college is need-blind or not. So need-blind means that when someone is reviewing your application for admissions, they do not know anything about your financial aid status and how much aid that you have requested from the college. Um, and typically this is important because of a college says they are need aware.

It’s most likely in a negative sense saying that they are like very aware that you cannot afford to go to this college. Um, and typically there aren’t many colleges like that, but when I was like visiting, um, I specifically talked to admissions officers saying like, oh, we’re need-blind, which means like, we don’t care if you could pay, like when you make it and we’ll help you that.

Um, and then also if a college says they meet 100% of demonstrated need, that means like when you fill out documents that will, um, sort of prove how much helping me based on your family income, et cetera. When they say they’ll meet a hundred percent of that, that means that they will fully, fully, fully meet you where you are, um, based on your income things [00:06:00] like.

Um, so that that’s a side that a college will have like a great financial aid program. Um, and then again, if you don’t qualify for, so say like, you know, that you can’t pay for college, but you’re also not in that line where you don’t qualify for free and reduced lunch, but like, you also are not like super rich who can’t pay the full price.

Um, another. Tip to look into colleges, is colleges with scholarships associated with their school. So this would kind of mean like you applied to the school and when you apply to the school, they consider you for some scholarships. So an example of this would be like Washington university in St. Louis.

Like when you applied to wash U yes. You fill out the common app and everything to apply to the school itself, but then you can also separately apply to the different scholarships that they have. So if you get in, then you can get into the school and you can get accepted with a scholarship. And some of those scholarships will cover you.

Um, and wash you, I think has like 15 or something. And a lot of those are full rides. So like say you become, you fill out like the WashU application, get accepted your common app. You also get accepted to their Danforth program. [00:07:00] Um, then they will like pay for you entirely because that’s a school specific scholarship.

Um, but if you say you get into like wash U and you get like the WashU specific scholarship, but you decide to go to USC like that scholarship will not follow you. Um, so that’s why sort of your list can change based on which schools have. Scholarships tied to them. And if you guys currently have an advisor, we have like an internal database of schools with like merit scholarships.

It just ask your advisor, if not, you can do like a quick Google search of like schools with merit scholarships and a whole list will pop up or like schools that like you can attend for free and they’ll pop up. And then finally, um, this is kind of important terminology to get out of the way. Also let me know if I’m talking really fast, there’s just a lot to cover.

There’s 23 slides. Um, but financial aid comes in the form of grants. Scholarships work, study and loans. Um, so colleges with grant aid or scholarships are the best programs because it’s basically free money. And you don’t have to pay it back. So if [00:08:00] you, if I’m a college says like, oh, like most of our students received grant aid, that’s a good sign.

Um, because that just means that they are giving you that money. You’re not expected to pay it back, unlike a loan, um, and then work steady or like, Federal work study is when a part of your financial aid program, like say they give you $2,000 to help you for college. If that’s associated with work study, it’s not like they’re just giving you the $2,000.

It means you have to like, sort of do the work like the work study at your school, get a job in your campus, um, associated with a school, um, to sort of pay that, to get that money. If that makes sense. So that’s, those are sort of the different terminologies. And then within scholarships, there’s merit based scholarships and need-based scholarships.

So merit based scholarships means that they are awarded to you based on your achievement. So if, for instance, the national merit scholarship, if you take the PSA T junior year and you get a really high score, you’re in the top percentile, then you can be considered for the math, national merit scholarship.

And that has nothing to do with your family’s socioeconomic status. That’s purely based on [00:09:00] how you take. The PSA T um, but need based scholarships have nothing to do with your academic ability. It’s just purely your socioeconomic socioeconomic status. So those are the different terminologies. Um, And then finally, some of this aid will not come directly from your school.

It can come from what’s called an outside award. Um, so what an outside award is, um, a scholarship that you can apply to. And then that foundation lets you take it anywhere. So for instance, the, um, I’m trying to come up with an example off the top of my head. Like, let’s say the gates foundation. If you become a gates scholar, they will pay for all four years of college for you.

Um, but it’s not tied to specific schools. If you remember. When I was saying, looking into scholarships associated with schools and how, like, if you get the WashU scholarship, you can’t take it. See outside awards are different, um, because you can take it anywhere or if it like within schools that they allow you to.

So, um, this is separate from the school specific scholarships. [00:10:00] And I just want to bring this up because the best way, like I found helping me pay for college is like getting local scholarships. Um, I just asked my counselor, like, Hey, like what kind of money is out there for me? And she’s like, oh, you should apply to like this Los Alamos national lab scholarship.

I was like, I don’t even know what that is. But then I applied and they got it and they were like, okay, here’s like $15,000. You can just take to any college with you. And then I tell my school, like, Hey, I got this outside award. And they’re like, okay. And they factored into my package. Um, and since the money goes to the school, then they like cut down my tuition.

Yeah. So that’s why you should definitely look into outside scholarships, just shoot your counselor, mail, check your newspapers. Cause they’re usually there and that’s sort of the different types of scholarships and also the first steps to finding the best financial aid and making college the most affordable.

It can’t be. Um, oh my gosh. I feel like I was just, I have my myself, so I went to mean based versus merit aid. I kind of explained me base versus me. Right. Um, scholarship. But, um, this is just again, To go further into it, federal [00:11:00] need-based aid or just need based aid means that this is determined by your family’s ability to pay.

So you may be like, well, how do they know what my family’s ability to pay is? Like, do I just tell them? And no, you actually have to go through this process. So, um, you might’ve heard the term FASFA and we’re going to go into it in the next slide, but the FASFA is just something like that. You fill out.

With all of your family’s socioeconomic info, and then they will determine how much you, you can pay for college. Um, and then that like determines your needs. So if they say like, well, we looked at your assets and we turn it determined that you can pay like $300 a year for college, then you need. Like the whole tuition minus the $300 you can pay.

Um, so then it’s called a college can match that. And then again, merit aid awarded by an institution or private organization. This is for talent or your athletic or academic ability. Um, and there’s also a great webinar done by my friend Jesper. Um, that’s recorded and it’s called like merit based scholarships for college.

So definitely go check [00:12:00] that out because I’m not going to go into that any further. But moving forward, what is the FASFA? So again, you might’ve heard this term, um, but it stands for the free application for federal student aid and it opens October 1st for the following academic. As the deadline varies.

So I think it stays open until maybe June or something. But typically, um, if you’re applying early, the deadline is like November 1st. And if you’re applying regular the deadlines, like, like November or something like that. But, um, even though it says it stays open until like June, you should look up like, when is the fast overdue and the name of your school.

So what is the fast to do Harvard and Harvard? Like if you’re applying early, do it November 1st. But this is determined. Um, this is used to determine federal or state aid from the government specifically. Um, and it can also be used by your school to determine financial aid from the school. So, um, an important thing to note here is if you fill out the FASFA, you can be ineligible for federal aid.

From the government or like aid from your state [00:13:00] government. Uh, but you can still be eligible for financial aid from your school. Um, so for instance, one of the government like federal scholarships that the government can sow is like a Pell grant. And if you are eligible for a Pell grant, um, via the fast food that’s money that the government.

We’ll give you to pay, but if you are Pell eligible and you’re like, oh my God, I can’t pay for college. Like I, I’m not, I can’t get a Pell grant. Um, it’s separate. Um, you’re the college that you get into based on like how generous they are. They might look at it and still give you very, very good aid. So again, me personally, I was not Pell.

I was not Pell eligible. I was Pell eligible. Um, based on the FAFSA, I filled it out and they didn’t, I didn’t get like a federal aid. I think. I didn’t get federal aid, um, because it was just about that cop. But then Harvard, personally, like looked at my FASFA results and was like, uh, you can have a hundred percent of aid.

So this is what’s called your demonstrated financial need. Um, and that’s how ha that’s like the kind of. You’re awarded based on like how much financial need you’re demonstrating. Um, [00:14:00] another term you might hear is EFC. That’s your expected family contribution. So the fascia will determine like how much your family is expected to do.

Um, so you’re like, oh my God, this fast thing sounds horrible. Um, what do I need? And it honestly is like very overwhelming. Um, but the basics of what you do is that October 1st you can create an account on the federal student aid website, just Google. Fast make making a cow. Um, but it’s called an FSA account.

And um, that’s like once you make an account and submit all your documents, that’s how they’re going to determine what I was talking about before that expected family contribution. Um, and so the expected family contribution, basically what they do is they take your parents slash guardians income. They take, um, like down value.

Assets and a bunch of other things. And, uh, based on how high or low, like the total amount of like your family’s income and like how many people are in your family and all the information is that’s how they determine how much your family can pay. So if they’re like, okay, your family makes. [00:15:00] $80,000 a year.

Um, and based on all these other factors, we determined that your family should be able to pay like $12,000 pay for college. It might not be true. It might not be true, but that’s how they determine it. Um, and if your expected family contribution comes out to $0, um, that means that they have determined that your parents cannot pay any money for college.

Um, so your financial aid will reflect that. So say like, Your FAFSA EFC comes out to zero and then you apply to Harvard hard will be like, oh, your parents can’t baby. They will like, you know, full financial aid. Um, but a lot of this info comes from your parents slash guardians. So talk to them. And I don’t know if anyone’s out there like ESL.

Like, I understand you, if you, if you can’t read, like if your family doesn’t really understand this, um, you can always go to like a trusted counselor, even teacher, because there are just a bunch of documents that you need that I really can’t go into during this presentation, but it’s just like your tax returns, your social and all that stuff.

Oh, that was the next slide. So what do you need to complete the asthma? Um, so yeah, your tax records from two years before. [00:16:00] Um, so you can’t use, so say you’re applying for 20, 21, then you would have to use 2019. I, I just know it was two years old. I don’t know if I did the suppression right there. Um, and then in addition to like, Tax records and income.

There’s also like untaxed income. So like if like one of your parents or guardians received, like child support, um, your cash savings. Um, and there are a lot of other official foreign names that I really, really like. I am not like I should be explaining that. Um, but there’s a full checklist. If you just look up as a checklist and again, talk to your counselor, um, and then you do need a social, but if you are.

If you are, um, undocumented than their circumstances. Um, and also if anyone has any questions related to being undocumented later, please put them in the Q and a, because there’s some separate guidelines for financial aid on that. Um, but the most important thing is like, if you don’t apply for financial aid, you won’t get it.

So again, the FAFSA deadline is like June 30th, but make sure you follow what your college says to turn it in by, because it’s like, yes, it closes June [00:17:00] 30th, but you might need to put it in by November or October. Um, right when it comes out. So just be sure of that. And then secondly, um, you might’ve heard of the CSS profile and if you haven’t, this is important because I’m telling you right now, you’re hearing about the CSS profile.

Um, Well, let her do the FAFSA, but it has way more questions. And it’s actually done through the college board, which I’m sure you’re familiar with because they administer our AP tests or SATs. Um, we see them everywhere and unlike the FASFA, it’s not free. It’s quite expensive actually. Like it’s, it’s $25 for the initial one and then $16 per school.

So if you apply to like 10 schools and you have to set it to 10 schools, it’s like already like 200. Um, but if you qualify for like an act fee waiver, SATP waiver free and reduced lunch, then the CSS profile should be free to submit. Um, if not, this is the cost and I’m sure you can like look into, see if it can be like less than for you, but that’s just note.

Um, but the CSS profile, the reason. Why I’m talking about it is because it’s required [00:18:00] by private institution. So for instance, Harvard is a private institution. Um, and so the CSS profile has about 400 partner schools that require you put it in. Um, and it’s, um, almost as it’s like in P on par with the fast food, because it’s a huge determining factor in how much need based aid they’ll give you.

So go to CSS profile website, check it out. Next who lied. So the CSS profile, the CSS, the CSS profile versus the PASPA. Um, this is just quick checklist I found online. Um, so you can see that the CSS profile has, um, a lot more requirements. It just goes way more than that. So that’s something to know, um, like over here.

Uh, but you can also just look into this later, like feed Google since this whole checklist. Not really able to run down in this webinar, but just reading information. Um, and then Paul, because I’ve been talking really fast, if you could just take a breather. So, um, where are y’all in the [00:19:00] application process?

So haven’t started putting together, my school is started my application almost done and completed. So we’ll give y’all a second to answer that the CSS profile, like it’s crazy, like it’s the thing you never hear about. Like, you always hear about that and then they’re like, we need it. And it’s the longest.

Yeah, well, I guess it’s, cause also I’m like instant, like a private institution giving you a is different from a government giving you aid. So because they have their own like factors for determining how much money to give you. They like want you to submit the CSS profile. So they have like that much more information versus just like what the government is telling them.

Um, yeah. Cause government aid is like less generous and like some. Private institutions, which is really important. Cause I feel like some people are like, I’m not applying to like an Ivy league. It’s so expensive. And I’m like, oh, I know that the cheapest schools I’m like, well, let’s talk about it. Let’s talk about it [00:20:00] comes to step into my office and just kind of get in.

Yeah. Usually. Yeah. Easier said than done. So, um, it’s looking like a seven people haven’t started a lot of people, 25 are putting together their school list. So this is, this is a good time. And then buys people have started their applications completed, but that’s because most of them haven’t I know the common app opens August 1st.

So you guys who are like already on it, like props. Okay, so next question, or next slide. Um, how can financial aid affect your school is, oh, so this kind of goes into determining effect like your school is beforehand. Um, so again, prestigious private schools. So basically like for instance, the Ivy leagues, they do not offer merit based aid, but, um, don’t let that scare you away because they have some of the best financial aid programs in the country.

Like literally. Free for like so many people. Um, so if the cost of your [00:21:00] university’s important to you, um, like you might want to look into these like higher, like reach and target schools, um, purely because they have like really generous programs. And again, for those of you who are applying and you need a safety school, your state school is a great backup option because in-state tuition is so much cheaper than out-of-state tuition or private tuition.

But then also for me, like I was like, I’m not trying to see anyone from high school at my state school, but luckily, um, we had like border states that offered in state tuition. So I’m from New Mexico, but, um, Arizona like borders us. And so Arizona state offered in-state tuition to people from New Mexico and Colorado, which is really cool.

So if you didn’t know about that, you can also look into that. But yeah. Uh, if you have like the UC schools on your list, but you don’t live in California, I really hate to break it to you, but they’re just so expensive for out-of-state. Um, they’re out of state and that can be really important because also they tend to have less financial aid since they’re a public university, but are there state university for California?

So there, they already had like kind of giving their financial aid [00:22:00] to the in-state tuition kids in California. Um, but if you’re like, I have no idea how much the school will cost. A really great tool is what’s called a net price calculator. So some schools, websites actually have a net price calculator where you can like put in some general info about like how much your family makes.

Um, and then they’ll give you a ballpark of how much you’ll be paying based on like the average financial aid package they give to people in similar situations to you or the college where like the cold. Fully has everything. They have it at price calculator. So you can just look up college board’s net price calculator.

Um, as much as we love to hate the college board, uh, there’s so many resources to have, so please check them out. Um, and again, never feel afraid to reach out to the financial aid office at the school. They’re literally there to help you and help prospective students and help current students afford the.

And figure out like if they can do it. So do not be afraid to shoot them an email, maybe even schedule like drop hours and be like, Hey, like, I really want to talk about, um, your financial aid programs and like the affordability with school and like, blah, blah, blah, like net price calculator, et cetera, et cetera.

So don’t be afraid. [00:23:00] How can financial aid effect early decision early action. Okay. So we’re almost at the, the story time. I’m like excavating some memories here. Um, but remember that if you apply early decision, um, this is where if you apply like you, if you have. If you apply when you get in, you are bound to that school.

It’s, you’ll hear the word binding. Um, and from a financial aid perspective, this is super risky because, um, usually in the spring, if you’re accepted into multiple schools, you get like varying financial aid packages. So you can literally. Give one financial aid package to another school and be like, Hey, yo, like they’re trying, they’re trying to call me, like, I do want to match this.

And they’re like, oh yeah, yeah, yeah. We’ll match that financial aid package. Um, but with ed, because you’re only getting into the one you have like less leverage or like less of a frame of reference for, um, options that are cheaper, more affordable for you. So that’s why, um, ed can really be affected EA not so much because it’s not binding, but specifically like ed.

Um, so yeah. Um, [00:24:00] Well, what is your first experience with financial aid and early decision? So, yeah, EDD is binding. Meaning if you get in, you have to go, um, you cannot cheat. The system, apply to other schools. If you do apply ed, and then you apply to another school, they’ll find out and you’ll like be rejected from both.

So do not try that. Do not play with me all, but, um, the only reason they’ll ever allow you to withdraw your ed admission is if you’re unable to pay. So that literally happened to me. Uh, like I’m not even fully happened to me. I applied early decision to U Penn. Um, and I was accepted, but I realized like I could not afford it because the way they calculated aid was not like how I anticipated.

There were some things that I didn’t even know about, like, um, that affected, like they thought that I could pay a lot more than I did. And I was like, yo, like I can’t pull this. Um, even though I negotiated my package and got it, like. A little bit cheaper. I still couldn’t go. So I ended up having to pull out and that was just so, so, so, so, so stressful.

Um, because then I had to apply regular decision, like very last minute. Um, and I’m very grateful that I had like worked on my apps. Um, but that was definitely not fun. And I do personally feel that had I applied [00:25:00] to U Penn regular decision and gotten in, I literally could have like shown them my other packages and like negotiated it way more.

They would have been more generous, but because. At the time of ed, I couldn’t be like, I know Princeton would offer me more money. They’d be like, prove I’d be like, I can’t, um, I can’t find a, um, but yeah, so I just, I’m fully confident that had I gotten accepted regular. I could have haggled the financial aid package more based on the other.

So that’s important to keep in mind, um, what resources are out there for. I feel like I’m asking myself questions and answering them, but what reasons are out there for students who need help navigating the financial aid process? Um, so again, if you are already in the CollegeAdvisor network, amazing if your advisor cannot answer your questions.

I do ask them anyways, because they will direct you to someone in the network who can, um, and we have like financial aid experts working at CollegeAdvisor who like, literally can answer every question. There’s some people work in the financial aid office for like years and years and years, so they know everything, um, to do not be afraid to ask.[00:26:00]

Um, and then secondly, As someone who’s completed, like the whole financial aid processes. Listen, this can be like an upperclassmen like that older cousin. You only talked with Thanksgiving, like maybe talk to them about more things now. Um, family members are really great if you feel comfortable. Of course.

Um, and then I personally, again, it’s like ESL who, um, I really relied on like emailing the financial aid. Um, just read through the instructions. I promise you a lot of the information that’s in there. It’s just like, it’s like an eight. It’s like, there’s so many instructions on the FAFSA and you just have to read through it.

And if you don’t get a term, um, ask your teachers, trusted adults. Um, and also the internet, I use Reddit a lot, uh, because of the. They are real with you. They’re my homies. I might see why there, but yeah. And then also talk to your school counselor because they are again here to help you. And, um, again, don’t be, feel free to reach out to like the financial aid officers at the schools that you’re interested in, um, better to ask questions and get your faster right than miss something critical.

And, um, have it really heard against you [00:27:00] later in terms of the finance. And then what his last advice you would give to students looking for the best financial aid they can? Um, yes. Okay. So if, you know, you qualify for need based aid, which typically, like, they’ll just say, if you qualify for free and reduced, like if you qualify for free and reduced lunch, you should qualify for need-based aid.

Um, but if you know that. I have like some sort of bracket and you qualify for it. Then I would a hundred percent start looking into outside scholarships. You can apply to early. Um, there’s QuestBridge, like I mentioned, there’s gates. Um, and you can also apply to, um, those insights, but insight scholarships is not a term.

I just made that up because it’s outside scholarships. So I was like, I might as well be inside scholarships, but again, these are the ones from the school, like looking into schools that offer. Um, but, uh, yeah, there’s a huge CollegeAdvisor database. Um, if you want to like look for those school associates scholarships, but again, like if, you know, you qualify for need based aid, you start looking into, um, other like outside scholarships that like are also correlated with [00:28:00] your ability to pay.

And then again, like, look for those local scholarships, because like, yes, I put QuestBridge of gates on here, but they are national scholarships. They’re two of the most popular scholarships out there and they’re very competitive, but the best way to sort of increase your chances of getting like free money, um, is looking for local scholarships.

So this would be asking your counselor, asking your teacher, asking people who’ve graduated, um, and checking the paper. And then, um, another small thing is like entering competitions because those competitions like. We’ll award you scholarship money sometimes, or just like money, you can save for college or, um, for whatever you need.

Um, so there’s like the Scholastic writing competitions. I don’t know if those offer specific money wards, but they’re still good to do. And then I entered like art competitions. Um, like there was one for, uh, Comicon and like national science foundation. And they’re like more niche because no one knows.

The national science foundation wants you to make a comic about like cells. Um, but I was like, oh, let me do this. And they’re like, here’s a thousand dollars. Thank you for like, you [00:29:00] know, for drawing cells. And I was like, thank you. I really needed this. Um, so definitely look into those. Um, and next time. Oh, last advice.

Okay. So I, you know, we have a question. I was waiting to answer the question to chat about, um, renegotiating terms of your financial aid package. You definitely can, again, the worst they can say is no, if you get a financial aid package offer and you can’t like afford it and you renegotiate, they won’t come back and like, make it higher.

So like, You can like the worst I can say is no. And like, they’ll just be where you are. So you might as well ask. Um, but you can appeal your package. There’s always a circumstance that you can talk about. That’s not reflected on your paper. Um, so for instance, like if your parent like, just recently got employed and like those tax records are from two years ago and like you’re not doing too well now, like that would be a circumstance that you bring up that can help them decrease it.

Um, And this is again, um, there’s so many factors you can talk about and you can always look sort of amplify factors, um, to make a sound, you know, you know, because he knows, but [00:30:00] there’s always something, so you can definitely appeal it. And they literally give you, like, when you appeal your package, you have so much more space to just describe your situation.

Versus when you’re filling out the faster you can’t be like, yeah. Like, you know, like you can, um, type a whole essay, but when you appeal it, you can cause they want more background information. But again, have an open discussion. I know it’s uncomfortable, but you’ve got to have the open discussion with your parent or guardian if you’re concerned about paying for college, just because you want to be on the same page about like, if they can support you, how much they can support you or like what your own expectations are for being able to support yourself.

Um, and my last last last piece of advice is again, try to avoid taking out loans, money. You have to pay back. Please, please, please try and exhaust all your grant and scholarship options, the free money before you have to take out loans. And if you do have to take out loans, that’s a whole other thing. Um, but yeah, that just.

My last advice and then the Q and a okay. Well, I spoke really fast cause I thought I was like, literally [00:31:00] speeding through that. Like I really am about to drop my SoundCloud in the chat. Well, we still have good time. We have good time. We have good time. Yeah. If I, if anyone wants any clarification on parts that I kind of like sped through, let me know.

So that is the end of the webinar, the presentation part of the webinar. I hope you found this information helpful. And remember that you can download the slides from the link in the handouts tab, moving onto the live Q and a I’ll read through your questions. You submitted in the Q and a tab, paste them in the public chat so you can see them and then read them out loud before our panelists gives you an answer as a heads-up, if your Q and a have, isn’t letting you submit questions, just double check that you joined the webinar through the custom link in the email and not from the webinar landing page.

If you join for the webinar landing page. It doesn’t allow you to use all the features. So make sure you join through your email and then also make sure to submit in the actual Q and a tab, just so stuff doesn’t get lost in the public chat. And so we can keep everything on chat, but, um, okay. Uh, the recording will be posted on, like, if you go to college [00:32:00], it’ll show up.

I think it should be posted by either tomorrow or the day after something like that. Um, Okay, so we’ll start off with this first question. Where should I look for financial aid if I do not qualify for free? Um, so first off, just because you don’t qualify for free and reduced lunch doesn’t mean that you don’t qualify for need based aid.

That’s just a general like guideline. Um, but, um, it could be different. So for instance, QuestBridge. We’ll say like they have like a specific number for like a household of five and that’s like, step that’s like different from the free and reduced lunch guidelines. I would still look at those just to double check to make sure that you don’t qualify for them.

Um, but secondly, if you know that you will not qualify for need based aid, meaning that your family makes enough money. Um, so that like people are saying like, well, we don’t really need to support you. Um, but you still need the aid obviously, then that would be. When you look towards merit scholarships, because those have nothing to do with how much your family makes that purely on your achievement.

Um, [00:33:00] so again, one of them PSA T junior year national merit scholarship Coca-Cola scholarship is purely merit based. Um, and then like the competition scholarship, like, like taco bell live Moss, like they, they’re not checking your FASFA, um, dug Wells down. Um, so there’s just like, that would be. When you would want to turn to merit based scholarships and on, I highly highly recommend just scrolling down and finding like Jesper’s presentation on merit based scholarship.

Okay. Um, I’m seeing a lot of questions about scans. So I guess I have a comment for one of these, but you know, you, you go, you go, you go, you go. Um, oh,

okay. So how can you tell if a foundation is a scam? I recently got an email from the national scholar high school. That whole thing is a scam. Any scholars program or scholarship that is asking you to pay for the application or pay to be a member is a scam. That’s a scam, [00:34:00] that’s a scam. You should not have to pay to get money that doesn’t, this is also just good, greater life advice, because there are things called pyramid schemes later on in your adult time and it’s employment, but you have to pay to work there.

Um, so yeah, anything that asks you to pay to be a member. Um, this is separate from application fees though, but like typically scholarships don’t have application fees. And again, to find out if it’s a scam, literally just type in like name of shady thing, you’re looking into scam Reddit. Cause they will, there’ll be on that show fast.

Um, yeah, just to find out if it’s credible, it’s kind of the same when you’re like fact-checking fake fake news. So to answer your question, then another question on scams. How do you know what kind of financial aid packages are a skim or they’re indicating factors or, um, you take this. Financial aid from certain organization.

I think that’s a bit of a misconception question. Wait, what’s the misconcept? Wait, which 1:00 AM I can, I think, could you pick it up? Oh, it’s in the Q and a chat, um, by Chloe, I think it’s, um, [00:35:00] scholarships are more scammed. Financial aid comes from either the federal government or like certain, um, it’s like a difference between scholarships and financial aid.

Pretty much. Um, but yeah, yeah, yeah. Okay. So financial aid. Um, so if, if the money is coming from the college that is admitting you, it’s not a scam because that college is like giving you money to go there. Um, okay. And then there’s a question about, are international students eligible for financial aid? So, um, this kind of actually ties into the undocumented student aid, um, for basically.

So private institutions. Um, so it’s like a private college that would be like, um, Harvard, Princeton, whatever. Um, Private institutions have their own way of determining financial aid, meaning, um, that they don’t like they don’t, they have like their own set of circumstances. So a lot of private institutions give a to international students, um, and also to undocumented students because they don’t follow the government’s guidelines.

International students are not eligible for aid [00:36:00] from the governments. Like if you go to like a state school, you have like, you’ll kind of get you seek tuition. Cause they’re like, no, you’re international. You’re not a us citizen. Um, that also sometimes goes for. Unfortunately. Um, but you, uh, international students are eligible for financial aid at private institutions.

Um, it might be separate, but I know several people at Harvard who like have like full financial aid, like same as me because Harvard determines that separately from like the guidelines. And I would also just also look into like what their policies are like, because there are some schools that I’ve heard things about where.

Daenerys for international students because they prioritize domestic students, but that’s very school specific because each school has its separate way of determining how to, where to aid when they’re not, um, like a state school. Uh, okay. So can you. Like a quick run through CSS profile because that is a little dense.

And then the, I S F so the, I think the ISF of a is for international student and I [00:37:00] am so sorry. I am not an international student, so I can not run through the FAA for you because I never went through it. So I’d hate to like give you false information based on, uh, I don’t know, because do you, by any chance know anything about the ISF.

No, I think that’s a question from Google. I’m sorry. Yeah, I’m so sorry. Like as much as I want to be here to help you that’s for international students, but there’s so many resources out there. So just read the website. Um, if you haven’t read the eyes of like the CSS, CSS profile ice FME website yet, um, please do that.

Um, and yeah, if you have an advisor talk to them because there are many international like familiar advisors or network who can help you and then going through the CSS profile, um, Quick rundown, just go Google CSS, profile college board. Now that you know the name of it, you can read more about it. But what you’re basically going to do is like you make an account.

Um, and then they’d have used to Mitt documents and it’s like this very secure process because you have to upload like your tax reports and like your social security number. And they’ll [00:38:00] ask you like, um, how many properties does your family own? Does your family own a farm? Which the answer probably. No, I dunno.

But yeah, it’s basically just like a really long form that you fill out. So I can’t really walk you through it. Um, you just kind of have to have to like, look at what they require. Um, but you don’t have a completed in one sitting, but you’ll like, if you just Google, like CSS profile checklist or ISA SFAA profile checklist or ISF checklist, you can see what you need.

The CSS is like a denser version of FAFSA. Um, okay. If you want to go to a UC school and you don’t live in California for the second year, do you, do you have to pay in-state. Or do you still count as an out-of-state student? Um, so I know that you don’t get in-state tuition your first year, unless you’ve been living in California or you have a California address that you’d like, say you’ve been there for two years, but I don’t know if you get in state tuition, like say like your junior year, if you’ve been living there for two years, I want to say.

[00:39:00] No, because you’re just attending school there, but your like permanent address is like still where you are. Um, but this is something that I would either like ask a current UC student or, um, just like ask the U UC, um, financial aid office, because I don’t know if you’re in. Like status changes if you’ve been going to school there for two years, but the answer is you don’t get in-state tuition at a state school unless you’ve been a resident there for two years.

I’m so sorry. I couldn’t, I only answered half of your question, not the full question, but, uh, I would definitely just talk to like a UC rep. Um, so there are two questions about, um, CSS. So can you fill out both CSS and FAFSA? Oh yes. So yes, you have to, um, they’ll require both, some will only require FASFA, but, um, typically you have to do both and the CSS and not all colleges require the CSS profile because the CSS profile only pairs with 400 colleges.

Um, and there’s like thousands of colleges in the U S um, but yeah, you’ll typically have to do both, not one or the [00:40:00] other. Uh, if you have really good grades, but not so great test scores, um, will it be harder for you to get scholarships, um, from outside? Um, so outside scholarship foundations all have their separate criteria for determining whether or not you can get that scholarship from them.

So for instance, the Coca-Cola scholarship, which is completely merit based, you don’t even run an essay for, um, or at least you didn’t like when I was like, when it was like back then asked me, I don’t know, things have changed since my day, but it’s like an essay free merit based scholarships. So that one, like if you don’t have a chance to lecture.

Show your personality, then they rely more on grades and test scores, but then there are some other outside scholarships that will ask you to write essays in addition to sending everything with them. And those like you, like, it would just be on your, like your ambassadorial potential or like, um, your personality and your character and things like that.

Kind of like the college admissions process. [00:41:00] I think we can just go over like scams with scholarships. I I’m. I did the N S H S S I never even applied for a scholarship. Um, I never even used anything that they were talking about. Honestly. It’s. I mean, you can look into them, just share what the scholarships process in their organization looks like.

Cause again, I didn’t use it, but for the most part, the best scholarships are going to be the ones that actually ask you for your FAFSA or actually ask you for an essay like those, no essay ones on like and stuff. Those are pretty stuff. Yeah. Um, I would honestly, like, I don’t know. I, I also did not have, I did not, I did not join it.

Um, because I, I do, it was a scam. Um, so I, my inclination is to say, don’t go for anything that they’re paired with, but again, just. Instead of applying. I don’t know if they have a portal where you apply through their portal, but see if you can just Google like the individual name and see if they [00:42:00] have like a separate foundation and sort of like chess at the vibes.

Like for instance, it’s N a N S H S S has like taco bell live MAs talk about live Moss is like a legitimate scholarships you should apply to talk about live, be at the taco bell, live Masa missions. Um, also burger king also has this scholarship guys, a fast food chains are like really on it. Um, but yeah, if you’re already in the portal, like, see if you can Google the, um, things like outside.

I think, oh, and then also other scholarship resources. Um, another great tip for finding scholarships is to Google your things that related to your identity plus scholarships, I was like Korean heritage scholarship. And there was a Korean heritage foundation, like who would have known, um, there’s like national, Hispanic scholarship.

There’s like so many, um, like scholarships based on Denny there’s scholarships for women in stem. Um, I’m sure you could find stuff for your like niche interested interests. Um, so that’s another tip for finding more like tailored scholarship. Um, with regards to like the CollegeAdvisor scholarship database, is that open to anyone?

Or do you need an advisor for it? And where can you find it? [00:43:00] I just found it in like our discord. I don’t know if that’s like a thing that we share with people. Um, yeah, but if it’s like, if you, if, if you can’t find the CollegeAdvisor one, like there’s like thousands of others out there online, just like it.

Um, But yeah, I’ll look into see if it, like, maybe we can, we can see if it’s public or not, but I know that we get it and then we just share it with, uh, so, uh, what if you’re a us student that wants to go international? How does financial aid work? Uh, like study internationally? I’m guessing. Um, cause there’s another one about this financial aid go with study.

Yeah. Yeah. Okay. Okay. So there’s, I guess there’s two sides of studying abroad slash going international. I will speak from my own experience. I studied abroad in Japan. Um, so what had happened was, is like I got into Harvard, but then Harvard has study abroad opportunities and. The study abroad opportunities work when you’re in college, is that your financial aid transfers?

Um, if [00:44:00] like, if you’re still like, because you’re just going abroad for like a year. So like you’ll still graduate from like, whatever institution, but you’re going abroad for like a semester, a year is summer. And so, um, like if you go away in the fall, then your fall financial aid that you got for your school in the state will like transfer to whatever school that you’re applying to, um, to study abroad at during your four years while you’re enrolled in still enrolled.

School. Um, and this is also like, if you want to study abroad, I would also just look at schools with like study abroad programs associated with it, because like, for instance, Fordham in New York has a campus in London. So a lot of people like study abroad in London because they go to like the London campus.

Um, the Callister has like a big, like, they’re very like big on study abroad. Um, so they have like a lot of programs supporting that. So if you wanna study abroad and I, like, I would look into schools. Partner universities or opportunities and things like that. But typically your financial aid will transfer.

But if you’re talking about like applying to like say, you don’t want to go to school, like in the U S and you’re like, I’m going to try to hit up like university of Toronto. [00:45:00] I have no idea how, like getting Canadian financial aid works for you. Like that’s not even a U S institution anymore. So they don’t have like the fast forward the CSS profile because.

Those colleges outside the U S are not in the FASFA slash CSS profile network. Um, so hope that answered your question. Cause there’s like two different types of study abroad. There’s like full four year. You go to another country or like two, your go to another country or you study abroad while you’re still enrolled in a U S Institute.

Uh, okay. So there are a lot of questions. Um, what Reddit threads do you recommend for finding financial aid and financial aid? There’s specific threads like R slash financial aid? I wouldn’t just like Google or I would just like search something and then the term read after and like, see what people are saying about it.

Um, yeah. Are, oh, sorry. No, no, no. Our international students eligible for financial aid? Um, yes. So again, I think, um, this is similar to a question from before, but [00:46:00] it’s first state schools. Probably not a lot. Um, but for private institutions typically. Yes. Um, but it really varies. So you should look specifically into, um, Like you should look specifically into like, which schools support international students.

The most I know from personal spirits, Harvard is like very supportive international students because they treat everyone the same once you’re like in. Um, but yeah, like short answer. Yes. Long answer looking at specific private institutions. Yeah. Oh, and then I got a private message. How much time you shouldn’t get on this?

Okay. Um, how much? Okay, so, um, someone asked how much time or effort should you spend on getting small scholarships that require essays? Because it feels like a lot of extra work to research and write for a slim chance at winning $1,000. Um, I guess it just depends on how much you want it and how much time you’re willing to spend.

I know that I did. Um, I tried to make sure I went for ones that were local. So like my local car repair [00:47:00] shop had like a 500 word essay competition. So obviously I would go for that one and not like a really big one. Um, I would prioritize maybe the ones that don’t send it directly through school, but give it to you in case.

Um, cause that’s just easier. Cause sometimes if you like, this is also a conversation for another webinar, but sometimes if you get too many outs of scholarships, it’ll just take away from the money that your school is already going to give you. So it’s like kind of like it’s kind of pointless. Sure. It’s a short answer, but yeah, I guess the effort is just up to you.

Try and engage maybe which ones you think you have a good shot at, but I would rather you whole ass, like one good essay that like half ass, like five, um, you know, just like for the sake of doing it. So, so a lot of these scholarships ask similar questions, so like, um, And your personal statement, you can spam these essays through a lot of things.

Cause it was recycled the horse, I say yes, because we are environmentally conscious everyone. Okay. That’s the best way to get, like, not get overwhelmed by all these essays is just to reuse. [00:48:00] Open a Google doc, copy and paste all the questions. You’re trying to answer. See what mine up. Similarly, similarly.

And then, so you know how many you have to answer, you know, which ones you can sort of copy paste a hundred percent. Um, that’s sorta like the easiest way. Shut up to make it look like you didn’t copy paste, which is just literally like swapping out the name. Like I’m interested in like the Korean heritage foundation for it.

And then deleting Korean heritage foundation and putting like Asian Pacific Islander, like scholarship or. So, yeah. Uh, so I’m going to ask some questions that seem pretty good. Um, just for knowledge from the pre pedal, but, um, when is the best time to apply as applying for financial aid earlier better is applying for financial aid earlier.

But I mean, the best time to apply for financial aid is like when the deadline is like, I don’t know if that was like the first school specific institutions. So yeah, when the, what the line is, because then you’ll get your package early and you can like negotiate it before you’re like forced to accept the school.

But then the [00:49:00] other best time to apply is like, literally now, because there’s money out there that you could be getting, like looking at competitions. Uh, okay. There was a lot of questions about specific websites. Oh, I, yeah. I’m so I’m not going to fact check every single scholarship website you guys like.

I really think that if you just, um, and this is also good skills to have in the future, there’s also Reddit R slash scams. Um, which everyone should just be looped into. These are so many scams out there in the world. You guys, please be careful. So. Just, um, like the scholarships that they pop, they have pop up, go to the actual website.

If the website looks like paper and it looks like it hasn’t been updated since 2009, it’s probably not a real scholarship. Or if it’s some random firm that you’ve never heard of, it’s like, We know it’s intuition at that point. It’s intuition, but sometimes it’s like local scholarships. The people like they’re legit, but the people running them are just old.

So if you hear it, you hear about it from a counselor. It’s probably legit. They’re just like old. Like these don’t happen. They don’t not update websites. Um, but I [00:50:00] think, I think it’s intuition and you can always just look up like, Hey, is this a legit scholarship? And if someone’s like, absolutely not. Um, the no.

And if someone who is saying yes, sounds like very robotic. They’re probably like a representative of that company trying to scam you. So it’d be. Uh, okay. Um, do you see any questions you want to answer on looking at the pre panel? I feel like we answered actually a lot of them. Sasha all just about scams.

Okay. How does financial aid work? Do I have to pay it back? Is it a loan with texts? Like it was a long question. Um, how’s it beneficial? How does it work? Pretty much. Just like a, yeah. Okay. So again, um, if you save these slides on like slide three, I think I went over like loans versus grants versus scholarships versus work study.

So loans you have to pay back. So if you get a financial aid package, this is actually really good question. Oh my God. So sometimes we get a financial aid package. Say, uh, like. University of like bullseye or whatever, it comes back to you. And they’re like, oh my God, we’re giving you a hundred percent financial aid.

Like you can [00:51:00] come to our calls for free, and then you look at it. But the college financial aid package they’re offering, you says like cost of attendance, 70 K loans, 50 K grants, 20 K. That means that if they’re, if half of. Eight is by giving you loans from the school that you’re going to have to pay that back because it’s alone versus like my Harvard package says like $35,000 per semester in grants, which means I don’t have to pay that back.

So if it says loan anywhere, that means you have to pay it back. If it says work study anywhere, that means you have to work, um, to get like the money that they’re giving to you. And if it says grant free money, you don’t have to pay. And then outside of wards is like, whatever outside things you get, that your squad, that your college has like, um, combined into your package, but yeah, only you only have to pay back loans.

Um, okay. There was a question or like, what are some general? Um, where was it? Oh my gosh. Okay. Uh, what’s a common mistake people make, as they’re looking for financial. That’s broad, but [00:52:00] yeah, I think, well, I think the most common mistake is people thinking that private institutions are like way more expensive.

Um, when in fact they are not typically, um, there are some that are, but like typically some of the most competitive colleges are competitive because they do offer like the most financial aid. So a lot of people are like, oh my gosh, I could never afford like, um, Uh, like we’re now because they had a whore, like it’s just so expensive because it’s a private institution, but it’s like, oh, well actually, um, the average student, um, gets a lot of financial aid.

So that’s the biggest misconception is like borrowing you off before you even know. Um, and the second big mistake is like applying places where you can’t afford and then having to sort of like pivot. Um, yeah, I don’t know. Do you have any like suggestions for like the state. Um, so at Cornell, uh, cause I, I, the tuition or the cost of attendance is $70,000.

I got 60,000 and, um, my financial aid package, even when you’re already an admitted student, [00:53:00] Like one tip is just be friendly with the financial aid office. Like make a best friend in the financial aid office because you never know who can hook you up and give you a little bit. Never know. You never know.

That’s like one thing, like financial aid office, like don’t be fake, but like, Be nice. Like how you’re nice to a teacher, get a letter of recommendation. You try to get the right letter. That’s money everywhere. There’s money everywhere. There is, there’s a lot more money than people make it out to be. Um, um, okay.

Also someone asks other than the places you’ve already mentioned, are there any other places. To find more information on financial aid. So obviously the best information is going to be from the source. Like I mentioned, please just read the CSS profile, pass the gap guidelines for what you need. Um, but for more information on financial aid, um, I think there’s some blogs that break it down really well.

So if you have any questions, like what is the FASFA, then there’s going to be a great blog about that. Um, and then also I just remembered, I think it’s called like college Greenlight or something is actually, um, a database for, [00:54:00] um, schools. College Greenlight is now caught CapEx. Oh, no froze.

Um, Okay, can someone in the chat see if they can hear me, or if Ramona’s for that? I’m not sure who’s frozen.


Okay. Okay. Uh, no, [00:55:00] uh, okay. Um, Lord Jesus. Okay, there you go. But, uh, we also only have like five minutes left in the presentation. Where you just speaking because you were frozen for I’m so sorry. I literally was. I’m like, literally so sorry. Um, I checked my wife. I went for this too. Um, so I don’t know where I left off slash like what question I was answering, but we’re also like we only have five minutes left.

So is there any like last question I’m so sorry, we’ve gone for a bit. I was saying that the college of Greenlight is now known as CapEx. That’s where you were at. Oh, okay. Awesome. Awesome. Yeah. Oh yeah. They’d be branded everyone’s rebranding, but that’s like a good database for scholarships. Um, and it’s not a scam.

I believe. It, it isn’t, you don’t have to pay it. It’s a free account and everything. Yeah. Um, any last minute questions, comments or concerns? Um, recording.

There was [00:56:00] something I was about to add that I completely, oh my God. I know what I forgot. Okay. Sorry. Uh, okay, so what’s work one-on-one with one of our, um, advi. You want to work one-on-one with an advisor from our team of over 155 advisors and admissions officers sign up for a free consultation with us by going to and clicking the green chat button in the bottom right of the screen.

Um, Uh, from there just right in consultation and a live team member, we’ll get back to you to help coordinate your free consultation with us. Uh, now back to the Q and a for one quick question.

Uh, okay. Um, so I’m not seeing any new questions or if we’ve missed one, just resend it. Cause there’s so many. Um, but yeah.


I don’t remember what I was going to say. There was something I was going to say, if not, we can also just, um, end the webinar a little bit early, but, um, that you guys so much for coming and again, like this is your time to ask. Don’t be afraid. There’s no dumb questions unless you can Google it and get your answer right now.

Then I will be kind of upset, but not that upset. Um, Okay, so thank you to our panelists. Thank you for everyone for coming out tonight. Um, this was fun. Um, so, uh, that is the end of the webinar and we really had a great time telling you about navigating financial aid deadlines. Um, oh, the new name of the college Greenlight, um, website is CapEx.

I typed it in. C a P P E X. Um, but if you type in college Greenlight, you should be able to find it. But, um, this is the rest of this is our new, um, August series. So there’s going to be a lot of, um, panels [00:58:00] on different colleges. Cornell is going to be one of them. So if you want to find out more about Cornell and you can find out more information about the common apps and different.

Portals specifically, um, especially since you’re starting to open up the, um, common apps and everything, so figuring out how to navigate it. So thank you again, everyone for coming out and I’m going to stop.