Wouldn’t it be great if you could find that pot o’ gold at the end of the rainbow to help you pay for college? As luck would have it, a free ride to college just isn’t in the cards for most folks. Your next best bet is to submit the FAFSA, or Free Application for Federal Student Aid. By submitting the FAFSA, you’re able to determine how much federal and state aid you may be eligible to receive to help pay for college.
Already submitted the FAFSA? It’s never too late to start applying for scholarships. Be sure to take advantage of the helpful information provided in UCanGo2’s Scholarship Success Guide to help you as you go.
In our continuing efforts to ensure that all Oklahoma students and their families have access to valuable college planning information, the Oklahoma College Assistance Program is offering helpful publications and tools in Spanish. We’ve also included information about Oklahoma’s Promise, an amazing scholarship opportunity that covers college tuition or students who qualify.
College Planning ¿Estás planeando ir a la Universidad? (Are You Planning to Go to College? – flyer)
High school checklists, FAFSA/financial aid information, and scholarship tips and resources
FSA ID Instrucciones para sacar una FSA ID (FSA ID worksheet – flyer)
Guides students and parents through the process of creating the FSA ID, a username and password used to sign, submit and edit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Space is provided to write down the answers given in each field.
The FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) is an important part of preparing for college. This form serves as your application for all types of federal and most state financial aid. High school seniors should complete the FAFSA in October of their senior year and then each year thereafter to request funding for their college education.
Understanding the FAFSA, however, can be challenging. To assist students, parents, and others completing this form, check out our new FAFSA Learning Modules. We’ve assembled five modules on the following topics.
Module One: Gather Your Information
Module Two: Create an FSA ID
Module Three: Complete Your FAFSA
Module Four: Sign and Submit
Module Five: Follow Up
These short PowerPoint modules offer detailed information on completing the FAFSA from start to finish. Links are also provided for users to find additional information, publications and resources to assist them in completing the FAFSA.
You’ll find the FAFSA Learning Modules and other helpful tools on financial aid for college on the resources page.
Congratulations! You’ve finished your college applications and submitted your FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid.) Now it’s time to find scholarships! There are thousands of scholarship opportunities available based on a variety of criteria. So where do you find these scholarships?
UCanGo2.org: Here you can find scholarships organized by category and deadline. There are scholarships year-round, so be sure to explore the opportunities listed on this site.
OKcollegestart.org: Create a Scholarship Profile! You’ll answer questions about your education, goals and more. The profile will narrow down current opportunities that you qualify for!
Unigo.com: There are over 3 million scholarships on this website. Opportunities are available every month and the more scholarships you apply for, the better your chances of receiving free money.
Your college’s website: Institutional scholarships are often available at various times throughout the year. It’s a good idea to check the scholarship listings on your college website every week.
Your financial aid office: Check with your financial aid office to see if there are any new opportunities available at your college. They can also help you find more scholarship resources.
Some scholarships require essays while others only require transcripts and references. Be sure to double check requirements for each scholarship before submission. For a list of additional scholarship websites, see UCanGo2’s publication Are You Looking for Money?
Optimism is in the air! You’re ready for new beginnings and opportunities to change some habits in order to achieve your goals. In addition to health and financial goals, there are some helpful academic goals that will give you a jump start in the new year.
Federal Financial Aid: By completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), you’re investigating your eligibility for different types of federal and state financial aid to help you pay for college. The FAFSA for the 2021-22 college year is now available, so be sure to submit it ASAP at FAFSA.gov. We encourage you to “start with FAFSA,” and then continue seeking scholarship opportunities throughout the year.
Scholarships: Not sure how to start your scholarship search? Here are some ideas:
Check out UCanGo2.org for new scholarships by category and by deadline.
While you’re there, take a look at the Scholarship Success Guide to review tips for applying for scholarships and find a list of additional scholarship search websites.
Create a profile on OKcollegestart.org to view scholarship applications that are the perfect fit for you. It’s important to apply for as many scholarships as possible year-round, so make a habit of applying for 2-3 scholarships a week.
Study Habits: While the FAFSA doesn’t take your grade point average (GPA) and class rigor into consideration, schools will look at them when considering your eligibility for academic scholarships as well as acceptance to their school. Your grades in college will also determine if you can maintain certain scholarship offers from year to year. To start or improve good study habits, check out the tips listed in The Perfect 10 Study Habits Guide.
Extracurricular Involvement: Many colleges will also ask if you’ve participated in any school or community programs outside the classroom. Join a club or volunteer in your community after school hours. Not only will your involvement look impressive on a college application or a resume, it will also give you opportunities to serve others and make a difference in your community. Are you already in college? Join a club or find opportunities in your community to share the skills and knowledge that you’re developing. Whether you’re still in high school or you’re headed into the career field, extracurricular involvement is an important commitment to make in the new year.
Happy New Year! Be sure to share your optimism with everyone around you!
What do you have planned for your holiday break? Family time? Catching up on homework? Taking a part-time job? Whatever your plans may be, focus a little on your future plans…college.
If you’re a senior this year, make sure you’ve completed the FAFSA. The Free Application for Federal Student Aid serves as your application for federal and state financial aid for college. It becomes available every Oct. 1 so always complete and submit this form as soon after that date as possible. If you haven’t submitted your FAFSA, do it now!
Scholarships should also be on your mind. Use your holiday break to apply for as many as possible. There are numerous scholarships available and you can apply all year for funding that can be used throughout your college career. Take advantage of this free money!
And if you choose to work on your break, stash a portion of your earnings in your savings account for college. Choose to save 20, 30 or 40% of your take-home pay. Any monetary gifts you receive for the holidays can also be added to your savings. Remember, every dollar you save is one less dollar you’ll have to borrow.
Enjoy your holiday and take some time to plan ahead!
November is National Scholarship Month! Scholarships are, what we like to call, free money. This means you don’t have to pay them back after college. What’s the first step in receiving free money? Start by completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Some scholarship applications are determined by financial need and require proof of a completed FAFSA.
Next, it’s time to start searching for scholarships that you qualify for. We encourage seniors to apply for 2-3 scholarships a week starting now. There are billions of dollars in scholarships available to students, so the more applications you submit, the higher your chances are to receive free money.
Each scholarship has its own requirements and qualifications. Some scholarships are merit or financial based while others can be based on skill or religious affiliation. Always follow directions and double check that you have all of your required documents. If an application requires a recommendation letter, make sure you give your mentor or teacher plenty of time to write it.
There are many different resources for finding scholarships. We suggest you start with UCanGo2.org and OKcollegestart.org. Both of these websites have regularly updated scholarship databases. Make sure you create a Scholarship Profile on OKcollegestart. You’ll share information such as your GPA, skills, hobbies, intended major, ancestry and more. The answers you provide will help narrow down available scholarships that you qualify for. If you need a little more guidance on the scholarship process, check out our new Scholarship 101 video.
Don’t get discouraged if you don’t receive a scholarship award. Keep applying! Get creative and ask local businesses, libraries and your school about additional scholarship opportunities. Your perseverance will pay off!
Before you begin your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) —have you decided which college(s) you’d like to attend? You will have to provide at least one college choice on your FAFSA—but what if you haven’t decided yet?
One of the best resources for exploring colleges is OKcollegestart.org. Once you’ve logged in (you can create an account on the OKCS homepage), click the ‘College Planning’ tab at the top, then look for the option to Explore Postsecondary Schools. Under School Exploration Tools, choose School Finder. You’ll see a list of school characteristics at the left which can be used to narrow down your search. You can choose only one characteristic to begin, or you can choose as many as you wish to refine your search.
Once you see a table listing schools that have the characteristics you’ve chosen, click on each of the school names to compare the schools on the list. The individual school profiles will provide a wealth of information to help you determine which colleges you’d like to investigate further—school size, average cost of attendance and programs/majors offered are just a few things to check out. You can even find each college’s school code that you’ll need if you choose to add that school to your FAFSA! Adding a college code to your FAFSA doesn’t mean you’re making any commitments to that school. It simply gives the financial aid office on that campus permission to see the data from your FAFSA, so they can determine how much financial aid you may qualify for at their school.
Give OKcollegestart.org a try! You’ll be amazed at what you’ll find there! Don’t forget to complete your 2021-2022 FAFSA as soon as possible!
It’s October which means it’s FAFSA season! The Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA, can now be accessed at FAFSA.gov. This form becomes available every October 1st and serves as your first step in applying for federal and state financial assistance for college.
The types and amounts of aid you’re eligible to receive are based on the answers you provide on your FAFSA. The information you’re required to include is also based on your answers to some very important questions that will determine your dependency status. Being considered Dependent will require that you include parental data on the FAFSA; being Independent means you will not.
Many factors determine whether a student is considered Dependent or Independent. Review our Dependency Questionnaire to see a full list of the inquiries so you can determine your status before starting the application. Here are a few questions you may be asked:
Were you born before Jan. 1, 1998?
What’s your marital status?
Do you have dependents that you support?
Are you a veteran?
Have you been in foster care?
After your dependency status has been determined, you’ll be better prepared for the type of documentation you’ll need to complete your FAFSA. The information shown below will be required by the student if he/she’s Independent. And if the student is Dependent, both student and one parent will be required to provide this information:
Your Social Security Number.
Your Alien Registration Number (if you are not a U.S. citizen).
Your 2019 federal income tax returns, W-2s, and other records of money earned. (You may be able to transfer your federal tax return information into your FAFSA using the IRS Data Retrieval Tool.)