I hope you and your family had a wonderful holiday season!
Many colleges with early decision and early action deadlines have passed. Congratulations to the students who have received acceptance letters from the colleges they applied. For students who are still in the middle of college applications, I wish you luck as you submit your applications!
The FAFSA has been available since October 1 for the 2018-2019 academic year. If you have not already submitted your FAFSA, make sure you send it in before the state and college deadlines. Submitting just one date late could mean you lose out on a lot of financial aid money. In addition to the FAFSA, make sure you check with the colleges you are considering to see if they have additional requirements. Some colleges also require the CSS Profile or their own financial aid application.
While much financial aid comes from the institutions themselves, students should also look for outside scholarships to help subsidize the cost of education. As you know, JLV College Counseling offers many scholarship lists. Don’t forget to check out the lists of scholarships with January and February deadlines. In addition, there are scholarship lists based on grade, major, disability, residence, and interests, among other demographics.
One of the most important things during the college search process is visiting the colleges you are considering. The whole point of college marketing materials is to sell you on the college – all colleges will look desirable when reviewing their marketing materials and websites. The best way to find out if the college is a good fit for you is to visit to get a better feel for the personality of the college. Below are some articles I have written about college visits:
- 18 Tips to Make the Most of Your College Visit
- 30 Questions to Ask Current Students
- 7 Benefits of Staying Overnight When Visiting Colleges
- How to Make College Visits Less Expensive
- College Visit: Open House or Individual Visit?
- College Visit Tip: Go Off Course and Script
- 4 Tips for Summer College Visits
Have a great January! If you ever have any questions or think there is an article that could be helpful, send me a message. My goal is to help students and their parents as much as I can as they move through the college admissions and financial aid process.