Solutions for the FAFSA Completion Crisis
Each year, tens of thousands of Hoosiers take an important and necessary step to become eligible for financial aid to help fund post-secondary education.
But this year, the number of free applications for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) has dropped significantly, and the April 15 deadline for a generous grant from the state of Indiana is fast approaching. . Residents of Seymour and Jackson County should know they have a trusted nonprofit ally ready to help them raise funds for education beyond high school.
As students and families in Indiana engage in planning for college every year, 2021 is different. Many locals have suffered job losses, unforeseen expenses derail their plans and, in a recent poll, more than three-quarters (77%) of Hoosiers said they believe the COVID-pandemic- 19 and the economic downturn had pushed higher education even further out of reach. .
This is disturbing news, but even now there is still plenty of needs-based financial assistance available to Hoosiers willing to take whatever short time it takes to complete the FAFSA. This one app is the key to accessing a wide variety of financial aids and opening the door to post-secondary education with as little debt as possible.
As the only nonprofit established by the State of Indiana dedicated to financial aid education, our mission is to help Hoosiers plan and pay for their education wisely beyond the high school. Here are some key actions – and free resources – that people should know about:
The most important thing that students and families in south-central Indiana can do is complete the FAFSA by April 15. The Indiana Commission for Higher Education distributes more than $ 350 million in financial aid as needed. The FAFSA is required to access these funds. We help families across the state at no cost, and we want to help all families who need it. They can reach our experts at 317-715-9007 or by email at [email protected]
It is never too early to start applying for scholarships and a key step in repeatedly eligibility is… you guessed it… completing the FAFSA. Students and families are often surprised by the number of local businesses, community foundations, church groups, and workplaces that offer scholarships. And colleges and universities also offer merit assistance to students. We help Hoosiers find scholarships and more information is available at investindiana.org/resources/for-families.
Workers looking to upgrade through free state training programs must also complete the FAFSA. Indiana’s Workforce Ready Grant (WRG) program enables Hoosiers to access tuition-free certificate programs in high-paying and high-demand careers including: advanced manufacturing; building and construction; health and life sciences; IT and business services; and transport and logistics. This is all part of Governor Eric Holcomb’s Next Level Jobs program and our team can provide free advice to Hoosiers on how to complete the WRG application.
We strongly encourage students and families to exhaust all non-repayable funding sources such as grants, scholarships, and institutional financial aid before applying for a student loan. Even in an age when conversations are swirling in Washington, DC about loan cancellation, student loans should be seen as the last piece of the puzzle. If a loan is really needed, Hoosiers can use us to discuss responsible educational loan options that may be right for them.
We believe education beyond high school is more important than ever, but we realize that many families are unsure of where to turn to navigate financial aid options, especially amid the COVID pandemic. -19. Eighty-one percent of Hoosiers believe more of the state’s residents would pursue post-secondary education if they knew they had a free, reliable resource to help them plan and avoid student debt . The good news: they absolutely do.
Four decades ago, policymakers in Indiana created INvestEd to help Hoosiers wisely fund their post-secondary dreams.
This is our singular purpose and mission as the only nonprofit student loan and financial aid organization in Indiana. If you – or someone you know – needs help planning tuition or just completing the FAFSA, do what thousands of Hoosiers have done and go to investindiana.org and put us to work.
Joe Wood is President and CEO of InvestEd. Send your comments to [email protected]