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Financial Aid & Scholarships

 

General Financial Aid Information:

The FAFSA (Free Application for Student Aide) will officially open for you October 1st for the 2022-2023 school year. This will be your first year of college  or postsecondary studies.  It reopens on October 1st each year, and must be filed for each year a student is in college. However, you will use the same FSA ID every year. 

Parents and students BOTH need to have their own FSA ID. However, parents who have a child who has previously filled out the FAFSA will be able to use their same FSA ID for all their children. Students have their own unique FSA ID. 

Be sure to keep your 2020 tax returns and W2 forms in a safe place because those will be what you’ll need beginning 10/1 to get started. You also want to be sure you don’t start prior to October 1st. If you go onto FAFSA and think you’re submitting before 10/1 it’s probably because you’re in the 2021-2022 application, which is for this past graduating class of 2021, not the Class of 2022. For an extensive list of all documents you may need for your FAFSA see here. You can always gather materials and prepare ahead of time.  

Prior-Prior Year

This is the term used for document purposes. The paperwork that will be used for the FAFSA each year is from the prior-prior year of that years' enrollment. For example, if a student will be in college beginning fall, 2022 then the prior-pror year (2 years prior) is 2020 and this is why you would be using these documents. Then for the 2nd year of college (fall 2023-2024) you would be using prior-prior year documents being from 2021. 

Parent Financial Aid Q&A:

Monday, October 4th, 6:30pm, VIRTUALLY with Mr. Lewis DeLuca, Financial Aid Advisor

To prepare for the Q&A please watch this YouTube video ahead of time at your convenience.

If unable to join the Q & A, you can read this brief article on FAFSA 101 for some general information. For a step-by-step video guide, you can watch this 40 minute video on filling out the FAFSA-which is very helpful and takes you question by question. 

Additionally, at the end of this newsletter there are a ton of financial literacy articles sent to us from Mr. DeLuca. 

Student Financial Aid Info Session:

More info to come on this, but to be held the week of October 4th in school.


Completing the FAFSA:

U.S. Citizens/Permanent Residents:

  • More information about this is in the resources above, but please note the following:

    • Students intersted in getting on-on-one, FREE, assistance should attend the October info session, and then sign up for a one-one-one appointment through Ms. Forlenzo.

    • If a permanent resident or U.S. Citizen you are eligible to complete the FAFSA, if undocumented you will complete the AACTUS (more info below)

    • To complete the FAFSA please acquire all necessary documents:

      • Student Driver’s License (if you have one)

      • Green Card (If a non-U.S. citizen)

      • 2020 tax return

      • 2020 W2 form(s)

    • Parent/Guardian AND student must both create their own FSA ID.

    • Once both FSA ID’s are created you can begin the FAFSA process.

    • **Please note that if a parent/guardian is undocumented, but you are not undocumented, you will STILL be able to complete the FAFSA. You will be able to print a page at the end to have parent/guardian sign and mail in.**

      • Your FAFSA will not be processed until this page is received, so do this as soon as possible.

    • Once the application is submitted it needs about 5-7 business days to be received. Please make sure that if you are trying to be eligible to receive PACT (free tuition) for CT Community Colleges you should have this submitted no later than July 8th, so that it is processed on time by the July 15th deadline.

    • If you have any questions you can reach out to the Financial Student Aid Information Center. If you are working on this over the summer you can also reach out to the Bridge to College Summer Counselors for more assistance. 

Undocumented Students

  • You must complete the 2022-2023 AACTUS. This will be posted for print soon!

  • Once completed you must have this document notarized.

  • Ms. Shelley is also able to assist you with completing this form. You can schedule an appointment through Ms. Forlenzo.

 


Links and Resources from Financial Aid Video Presentation/Financial Aid Assistance:

Please make sure to continuously check here for articles, resources, and more information.

Scholarship Information:

Please note that our local scholarships are constantly updating via Naviance. SForms may be downloaded through Naviance, or applications may be available directly though sponsor websites.. Make sure you read the directions and send the scholarships in to the correct address noted, or complete online if it's an online form. Any scholarships that should be turned into Ms. Forlenzo must be emailed by the end of the school day (2:05pm) as well as all supporting documents received.

Many local clubs, organizations,  unions, and private donors offer scholarship aid to those in need or who simply meet the criteria. Stamford High students should take full advantage of these scholarship opportunities. With a little effort students planning to further their education can be helped financially.

Our scholarship season, as we like to call it, is when the majority of scholarships become available. This happens throughout the winter and spring months of senior year (semester 2). However, there are scholarships available prior to this time. For example, the Mickey Lione Scholarship is for exceptional 10th grade student-athlete and becomes available spring of 10th grade. Mr. Forlenzo will email eligible students in March. We recommend that students focus on their college applications during 1st semester of senior year, and then scholarship applications during 2nd semester. If you have any qeneral questions you can reach out to your school counselor, or Ms. Andrena Forlenzo. If you have specific scholarship questions that are from outside donors you can reach out to the contact provided in Naviance. 

Scholarship Survey:

Seniors should complete the scholarship survey in the fall, on Naviance, in order to be personally informed of our local scholarships. A parent volunteer will contact you if you meet the scholarship criteria, but that information is pulled through the scholarship survey. Throughout the months of November through May students will receive email notifications about specific scholarships that they may be eligible for and then can begin the application process.

How to Complete the Scholarship Survey

  • Sign into Naviance through Clever, using your student ID# as both your username and password
  • Click on About Me tab in the top right corner of the screen
  • Scroll to My Surveys
  • Click on Surveys Not Started
  • Select Class of 2022 Scholarship Survey (available in November)
  • Remember this can be updated as more information becomes available, so you can always come back and modify.

Additional Scholarship Resources

  • HBCUConnect has a large database (over 1,000) of scholarships for students attending HBCU's or for African American students. Please check out the HBCU Connect website for opportunities. You may need to create a free account to view the scholarships.
  • CT Students for A Dream has a database of scholarships for undocumented students or students going through the deferred action process. Each has a link to the application in which they are referring. 
  • College Board Opportunity Scholarships are where you earn scholarships for completing steps of the college process such as Khan Academy hours and building a college list. Make sure to check it out and get started here!

Senior Scholarship Breakfast

Seniors who have received scholarship awards must document this in their Graduation Survey, which comes out each spring. This is how the counseling department tracks scholarships and sends invites out for the senior scholarship ceremony. This information is self-reported by each senior. Invites will go out via email at the end of May for those students who reported scholarships. 

Date: (Tentatively) Tuesday, June 7, 2022 at 8:30am

Traditionally, student award recipients are encouraged to bring their family members. More information is yet to come due to COVID-19 restrictions.