So you want to go to
college or career school. Maybe you started saving early. Maybe you’ll discover
some buried treasure, but more likely,
you’ll need another plan. So, if paying for college is
going to fall on your shoulders, the U.S. Department of
Education’s office of Federal Student Aid is the best
place to turn for assistance. I bet you didn’t know that we’re
the largest provider of grants, loans, and work-study funds. All
of which are easy to apply for. And when it is time to apply for
aid, head to your favorite spot to complete the Free Application
for Federal Student Aid or FAFSA. Each October, a new FAFSA
is available for the next school year, and completing
it is free when you go to the official website: fafsa.gov. Your selected colleges will use
the information on your FAFSA to figure out how much aid
you’ll get, so make sure your info is accurate. But if you need to, you can go
back and make some changes. If you get a grant or work-study
job, congrats, you won’t have to pay the money back. However, a federal loan is
borrowed money, and you’ll need to promise to repay it. Remember
to borrow only what you need because a federal student loan
is a real loan. Just like with a car or home loan, it’s
important that you understand what you’re agreeing to. Although college, financial aid,
and the prospect of an instant noodle diet can be a little
overwhelming, you’ll be putting yourself on the path to success
when you take the time to plan out your options and let the
office of Federal Student Aid help you along the way. If you have questions
or need more information, please visit StudentAid.gov.