Cyndi Stonesifer, Director of Financial Aid at Kishwaukee College, wants to inform area residents of a change in filing date for the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). “The FAFSA filing date has always been the spring prior to a student enrolling in college, but that has changed this year,” she explained. “For anyone planning to attend Kishwaukee College or any other college or university in the 2017 – 2018 academic year, the filing date will now open on October 1, 2016.”
The FAFSA is the basic building block of all financial aid packaging for college students across the U.S. Filing the FAFSA is the first step in determining what federal or state financial aid a student is eligible for, including Pell Grants, Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants (SEOG) Federal Direct Student Loans and the Illinois Monetary Award Program (MAP Grants). Filing early may qualify a student for funding from a wider variety of financial aid sources. The Illinois MAP grant, for example, has a limited amount of funds to award and is dispersed in a “first come, first served” format, making filing the FAFSA early a necessity in qualifying for MAP funds.
Stonesifer added, “In the past, people would wait to file the FAFSA because it requires completed income tax forms which they often had not yet filed. The 2017-18 FAFSA will use information from the 2015 Tax Forms – forms that were completed and filed six months ago. In addition, it allows students to easily use the IRS Retrieval Tool which automatically links the filed tax forms with the FAFSA form. It makes filing for FAFSA a lot easier!”
Kishwaukee College is planning to hold its annual FAFSA Completion Nights in October and November this fall, as well as on a January date during the Spring semester. Stonesifer added, “The local high schools in our district have done a great job getting the word out about the new FAFSA filing date, but I want to make sure that all students are aware of the change in filing date.”
For more information on the FAFSA, visit www.fafsa.ed.gov/ or visit www.kishwaukeecollege.edu/financial-aid.
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Andrew Stahl Darby Fisher
Courtney Michels FYI
Wow…thanks for making the effort to get the info out!