Financial Aid Information

Financial Aid Planning

My child knows that he/she wants to further his/her education but how can he/she possibly to do so?  The following are financial aid possibilities we encourage you to consider…  

Free Application For Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)
 FAFSA is a form all students should consider completing. This is a FREE opportunity for students to access financial assistance for college. Applications for FAFSA may be submitted from October 1st – June 30th. Please be prepared to use last year’s federal income tax return to assist you in completing this form. More information, including FAFSA applications, may be accessed through their website- www.fafsa.ed.gov

CSS/Financial Aid Profile
 This is another financial aide application that some students may want to consider completing. Profile is a service of the College Board which helps to gather financial information to assist colleges, universities, graduate and professional schools, and scholarship programs to award nonfederal student aid. There fees involved with this application process. For further information or an application please visit their website at www.collegeboard.com

 

Financial Aid planning for grades 9-12


Many parents and students ask the question “Where do I begin?”  From speaking with parents we know this process can become very overwhelming. We recommend parents of high school students utilize the following step by step, grade by grade, guide when exploring financial aid options for ninth (9th)–twelfth (12th) graders. You may also contact us at any point and we will address your specific concerns.

Ninth (9th) & Tenth (10th) grades
Begin taking stock of what you have already saved and what you will be able to contribute when your child is in post secondary school. Will you have other children in school at the same time? Will there be other large expenditures coming due at the same time? Will anyone else be contributing to your child’s education? Is your child planning to attend a two year or a four year school? All of the above mentioned are important components to take into account when planning for the financing of post secondary school education.

Eleventh (11th) grade
This year is a wonderful opportunity to begin preparing for what you will be doing next year. We recommend the following…

  • If there are large amounts of money in your child’s name now is the time to transfer it to your name or a younger sibling’s name. College aid departments consider your child’s savings to a greater degree than your savings when determining aid, which is why we suggest you transfer large amounts.

  • Begin looking over the FAFSA so you are aware of the information you will need to complete it next year.

  • Have your child begin searching for scholarships so he/she has some in mind that he/she may apply to, and the process in which he/she will go through to apply.

  • If your child has a particular or a few colleges in mind, begin exploring their financial aid process and opportunities.

  • Plan to attend a local Financial Aid presentation. Exploring financial aid opportunities this year will allow you to search for more sources of aid and make the process less stressful next year.


Twelfth (12th) grade

All of your planning will now pay off! We encourage you to explore any and all opportunities available to acquire financial aid.

Beginning in the Fall…

  • Attend a local financial aid presentation.

  • Start exploring scholarship opportunities.

  • Information on scholarships can be found on the daily morning tv announcements at Jim Thorpe, on the commons guidance bulletin board, in the guidance office, and on Powerschool under the Daily Bulletin.

  • You may search online using various search engines (see list).

  • The JTHS guidance office has scholarship search books students are encouraged to utilize.

  • We also encourage students to contact colleges of interest and inquire about the scholarships they have available (i.e. call the college or check their website). You may also check the JTHS guidance office file we keep on each college that has school specific scholarship opportunities.

  • One word of caution- you should never pay for scholarship search opportunities.

In January…

  • Fill out the FAFSA (Free Application For Federal Student Aid). This form must be completed for students to possibly qualify for state grants (money that does not need to be paid back).

  • There is no cost to complete and submit this form. The guidance office at the JTHS usually receives paper copies in late Fall. If a student took the SAT or ACT prior to July 1st he/she should receive a mailing from FAFSA in mid December. The form may also be accessed at www.fafsa.ed.gov .  FAFSA encourages you to complete the form online as the website does the calculations for you and results of aid rewards are processed more quickly.

  • Many parents are hesitant to complete the FAFSA as they assume they will not qualify for aid due to their financial situation. We encourage you to apply regardless of your financial situation. First, you never know for sure that you will not qualify. And second, many colleges determine their aid awards based upon the information on the FAFSA. Thus, you may not qualify for federal aid, but you may qualify for aid from an individual school.

  • You may begin submitting FAFSA forms January 1st.  Apply early! There is a designated amount of federal aid and once it has been awarded there is no more. 


Other financial aid options to explore…

  • Consider filling out the CSS (College Scholarship Service). Smaller, private schools may ask for this when determining aid. There is a nominal fee involved.

  • Forms may be accessed at www.collegeboard.com . You may also come to the guidance office for more information on accessing the form. We do not receive these forms.

  • Explore college specific financial aid opportunities. Some schools require their own application to apply for need or merit based scholarships. Please contact specific schools directly. Questions should be directed to admissions or financial aid offices.

  • When necessary, look to acquire loans. Please contact your financial institution to become aware of their college loan options.

Scholarships and Financial Aid Websites

Check out the Useful Links page to see and explore a list of websites we feel may be of assistance to you when exploring your financial aid options.