Education: Free Help on FAFSA Day


Story by Christine Hall, Ed.D., owner of CMH College Consulting. UNCG photo by Thomas Hopkins. This is the second story in a series.

Cary, NC- Now is the time for current high school seniors, as well as current college students, to be filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Never fear – help is here! FAFSA Day is Feb 23.

Free Help On FAFSA Day

On Saturday, February 23, 2013, the state of North Carolina will be holding its annual FAFSA Day. This is a day set aside for families to get free assistance with filling out this form.

The service is being offered by the College Fund of North Carolina  and locations are offered throughout the entire state.

Where to Find Help

In the Cary area, assistance will be offered at all the State Employee Credit Unions (SECU) for members only. You must follow the previous link to register, as space is limited.

For everyone else that is not a member of the SECU, the closest options are at Meredith College, St. Augustine’s University, and Wake Tech Community College on Fayetteville Road in Raleigh.

Grants, Scholarships, Work-Study and Loans

As its name states, the FAFSA is free for all families and assists students in receiving federally funded aid for college. This aid can come in the form of grants, scholarships, work study and loans.

With rising cost of tuition, everyone is looking to get some type of financial assistance to help cover the costs. Tuition in-state here in North Carolina is expected to rise, with most college graduates leaving college with an average of $20,000 of loan debt.

Financial Aid Advisor Program

For those students residing in Wake County, additional financial aid assistance is offered in every public high school. Through the Financial Aid Advisor Program, sponsored by Wake County Schools, families can get free assistance with financial planning for post-secondary education.

From mid-October through May, each high school has a financial advisor who assists families one day a week. For additional information, you should check with the Student Services department in your child’s high school.

Know Your Deadline

Remember, for rising college freshman, the FAFSA must be sent to every potential school that you apply to. Do NOT wait to hear about your acceptance.

Make sure you check with EACH school to determine their priority filing date, as they may be earlier than February 23rd.

For continuing students, check with your school to insure that you submit your FAFSA in time to benefit from the largest amount of aid.