Prospective college students get financial aid help at campus event

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KALAMAZOO--College-bound high school students and their families from around the area will be on the Western Michigan University campus Sunday, Feb. 12, to find out how to maximize their college financial aid opportunities.

College Goal Sunday, an event held from 2 to 4 p.m. in Schneider Hall, is one of more than three dozen such events being held at sites around the state to help high school seniors fill out their Free Application for Federal Student Financial Aid and submit it in time to ensure eligibility for maximum benefit.

The free event is a collaborative effort of the Michigan Department of Education, the Michigan Student Financial Aid Association and EduGuide, a non-profit network of people helping all children reach their full potential. Additional support was provided by the C.S. Mott Foundation, the Lumina Foundation for Education, and the DTE Energy Foundation.

The program was created to increase the number of students who continue education beyond high school and earn post-secondary degrees. The FAFSA is required of any student seeking financial aid including grants, loans, and many scholarships. Last year, more than 1,600 students received assistance at College Goal Sunday events.

"For many students and their families, college seems like an unachievable and unaffordable dream," says state Superintendent of Public Instruction Mike Flanagan. "College Goal Sunday locations have financial aid experts who can help families complete these complex applications and maximize financial assistance for students wanting to go to college."

On College Goal Sunday, financial aid experts will be available to guide students and their parents through each step of completing and filing the FAFSA. Students under 23 years of age are encouraged to attend with a parent or guardian.

Students attending should bring their personal information needed to fill out the form such as:

  • FAFSA PIN or Personal Identification Number
  • Driver's license
  • Parents' income and financial statements
  • Parents' tax information
  • Social security number and parents' social security numbers

A complete list of items needed, along with additional details on the event and how to win a $1,000 scholarship, one of two $500 scholarships or one of three $250 scholarships is online at micollegegoal.org.