13 February 2013
KOKOMO, Ind. — High school seniors, current college students, potential college students, and their parents can get free help filing their Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) from 2 to 4 p.m. Sunday, February 24, at Indiana University Kokomo. The campus is one of 41 statewide sites for College Goal Sunday, and is open to students planning to attend any college or university.
James "Vinny" Vincent, assistant director of financial aid, said even students who don't think they will go to college, graduate school, or technical school during the 2013-2014 school year should file the form, because they cannot qualify for financial aid and many scholarships without it.
"Filing your financial aid paperwork properly, and on time, keeps doors open to attend college," he said. "We have a team of financial aid professionals, who volunteer their time to make sure students have the opportunity to access state and federal financial aid. There are companies that will help you for a fee, but we can do it for free because of our volunteers."
He said while the state filing deadline is March 10, many schools, including IU Kokomo, give preference for their own assistance programs to students who file by March 1.
Approximately 74 percent of IU Kokomo students qualify for need-based financial aid. Statewide, about half of all college students qualify for state aid.
Registration begins at 2 p.m. in Alumni Hall, and volunteers will direct those attending to computer labs from there. Financial aid experts will walk through the form line-by-line and answer questions during the session. Students should attend with a parent or guardian, and bring their parents' 2012 IRS 1040 tax returns, W-2 forms and other 2012 income and benefits information. Students who worked in 2012 should bring their own income information. Those 24 and older may attend alone, and should bring their income information.
Students and parents may apply for a U.S. Department of Education Personal Identification Number (PIN) at www.pin.ed.gov before attending College Goal Sunday.
The Indiana Student Financial Aid Association sponsors a Learn More Resource Center at (800) 992-2076 during February, which is Financial Aid Awareness Month. Financial aid professionals will answer questions at that number throughout the month.
Indiana University Kokomo serves north central Indiana.