Planning for the financial side of college may seem like a puzzle for high school students and their families as they explore what options are available.
A series of “FAFSA Frenzy” programs are scheduled in January by Tusculum College to help families find answers to their questions about the financial aid process and the options that may best meet their needs as well as receive assistance with completing the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) forms. Sessions are scheduled at local high schools in Greene County as well as at sites in Kingsport, Knoxville and Morristown.
Professionals from Tusculum College’s Financial Aid staff will provide their professional assistance at each of these “FAFSA Frenzy” events as a community service. The events are open to all high school students, not only those who may be interested in attending Tusculum.
FAFSA Frenzy events will be held at each of the local high schools in Greene County. The events are scheduled for 2 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 9, at South Greene High School; 4 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 14, at Chuckey-Doak High School; 4 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 16, at North Greene High School; 3 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 21, at West Greene High School, and 4 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 23, at Greeneville High School.
Tusculum College sites in Kingsport, Morristown and Knoxville are also hosting FAFSA Frenzy events. A session will be held at 4 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 27, at the Kingsport Higher Education Center on West Market Street. The Morristown Center inside the Medical Arts Center on West Morris Boulevard will host an event at 5 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 28. The FAFSA Frenzy events conclude on Thursday, Jan. 30, with a session at 4 p.m. at Tusculum’s Knoxville Regional Center on Centerpoint Boulevard near the intersection of Lovell Road and Pellissippi Parkway.
In case of school closures due to inclement weather on any of these days, the events will be rescheduled.
Whichever event they attend, students and their families are welcome to drop in anytime during the scheduled period to receive assistance.
“Financial aid and preparing for college can seem daunting for students and parents who are new to the process, and we want to help families in our community learn about their options and take the necessary steps to obtain the financial aid needed,” said Melissa Ripley, director of admission at the college. “Tusculum College is pleased to provide this service to our community and share the expertise of our Financial Staff with students and their parents as they prepare for an important step in their lives.”
Students and parents are encouraged to bring their 2013 tax returns to receive assistance in filling out the FASFA during the event. If the 2013 tax return is not available, students and parents should bring their year-end paystubs, w-2 forms, and the previous year’s federal income tax return.
FAFSA forms are used to determine eligibility for federal and state funds such as Pell grants, Stafford loans, PLUS loans and work-study programs, and must be completed each academic year for which a student wishes to seek aid.
Students and parents are encouraged to apply for financial aid as soon as possible. The deadline for the Tennessee Student Assistance Award is March 1 this year. Tusculum’s Financial Aid Office recommends that students apply as quickly as possible to assure that their applications will be considered for aid types that typically become limited or exhausted long before school begins in August.