The first step in financial aid is to file a FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) as soon as possible.  Whether it is  believed you will qualify or not, it is important to file as colleges use this as the first step in financial aid, especially if attending a large college.  If you do not file, it is likely that the next step will not be reached and financial aid opportunities may be missed.  With few exceptions, most students will need parent tax information to file.  You will use your 2018 filed taxes.   If help is needed, college financial aid offices are great resources.  The FAFSA opens for 2021 graduates on October 1, 2020.


Federal Deadline

Online applications must be submitted by midnight Central Time, June 30, 2020.
Any corrections or updates must be submitted by midnight Central Time, September 23, 2020.

College Deadline
Check with the college(s) you are interested in attending. You may also want to ask your college about its definition of an application deadline - whether it is the date the college receives your FAFSA, or the date your FAFSA is processed.   Public Universities of Akron, Cincinnati, Cleveland State, Kent State, Miami of Ohio, Shawnee and Youngstown have Priority Deadlines (Must be submitted to be eligible for all possible financial aid and scholarships) of December 1Other Priority Deadlines are Bowling Green and Ohio U -January 15, Central State -January 31, and Ohio State and Toledo, Wright State - February 1.  Any question about private or 2 year college deadlines, please stop in my office.

**** Beware of Scholarship Scams!!  

The Federal Trade Commission offers the following signs that a scholarship offer is NOT legitimate:

  1.       “The scholarship is guaranteed or your money back.”
  2.      “You can’t get this information anywhere else.”
  3.       “May I have your credit card or bank account number to hold this scholarship?”
  4.      “We’ll do all the work.”
  5.       “The scholarship will cost you some money.”
  6.       “You’ve been ‘selected’ by a national foundation to receive a scholarship.”
  7.      “You're a ‘finalist’ in a contest you have never entered.”


Reputable General Scholarship Search Engine Sites Include  (Active Links):                                                                                


** Universities also have scholarship deadlines.  Make sure you are meeting those priority deadlines so you are eligible for their merit scholarships.  Please explore your specific university scholarships link as other private scholarships distributed by them may have different (some earlier) deadlines.  Here are the Ohio Public University Scholarship deadlines - The Ohio State University, Ohio University - NOVEMBER 15University of Cincinnati, Miami University, Shawnee State, and University of Toledo  - DECEMBER 1; Bowling Green - JANUARY 15;  Kent State and Wright State - FEBRUARY 1; Youngstown State - February 15; Cleveland State - March 1; University of Akron and Central State - May 1.


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