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     Financial Aid 101
     
     
     
    Figuring out how to pay for college can be a confusing and stressful process.  Listed below are some helpful information, workshops and websites to help you through the process.
     
     

    SUNY's Financial Aid Days are offered as a service to all prospective college students and their families. The programs are designed to answer questions and provide assistance regarding the financial aid application, types of aid available, and the award process.

    Forty-six programs across New York State will be offered. Many campuses will provide hands-on assistance from SUNY financial aid professionals in completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The FAFSA is required for all financial aid, including New York State assistance. Web access to complete the online FAFSA will be offered on some campuses.

    Register on line at http://www.suny.edu/studentevents or by calling the SUNY Recruitment Response Center at 1-800-342-3811.

      
    Websites to check out for valuable information on financial aid: 
     
    For scholarship information be sure to check out our scholarship webpage at (https://www.bhpanthers.org/site/Default.aspx?PageID=1270)
     
     
    FINANCIAL AID PROCESS
     
    What to do before January 1st of your senior year:
     
    STEP 1
    Get a Social Security Number (SSN).  If you submit the FAFSA without a SSN, your application will not be processed.  To apply for a SSN, visit Social Security Online, www.ssa.gov.
     
    STEP 2
    Request a PIN.  With a PIN you can apply and "sign" the FAFSA online, check the status of your submitted FAFSA and make corrections.  If you plan to submit your FAFSA online, you (and one of your parents) can request a PIN at the U.S. Department of Education pin registration website, www.pin.ed.gov.
     
    STEP 3
    Make note of state and college deadlines and requirements. College and state deadlines tend tobe earlier than the federal deadline (many as early as February or March), and may require an application in addition to the FAFSA. Play it safe-- collect these dates and information early. 
     
    STEP 4
    Obtain the online FAFSA worksheet.  Use this tool to help gather the information needed to complete the official FAFSA.  Worksheets are available from your high school guidance office, and public library.
     
    Tip: You are not required to use the worksheet. It is an optional tool you can choose to take advantage of before submitting the official FAFSA. You cannot submit the official FAFSA until after January 1; however, the worksheet lets you get a jump on gathering information and answering questions well before that date.
     
    What to do after January 1st of your senior year:
     
    STEP 5
    Complete the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) written form or on the internet. FAFSA Application forms are located in the Guidance Office. To access FAFSA on the web, visit www.FAFSA.ed.gov. Apply as soon as you can after January 1, because funding can be awarded on a first-come, first served basis. Some schools want to see your FAFSA on file by February 15th, so do not delay!
     
    STEP 6
    Review your Student Aid Report (SAR). Your SAR summarizes the data you reported on your FAFSA. When you receive your SAR, carefully review it line by line. Make corrections or changes, if necessary. If your FAFSA information is complete, an Expected Family Contribution (EFC) is printed in the upper-right hand corner. Colleges you listed on the FAFSA will receive electronic copies of your SAR. Click here SAR Article for more information about reading your SAR.
     
    STEP 7
    At least 30 percent of submitted FAFSAs are selected for verification. If you've been selected, an asterisk (*) will appear after your EFC number. Submit tax returns and other documentation to your college Financial Aid Office.
     
    STEP 8
    Compare award letters. If you are eligible for aid, colleges at which you are accepted will send you an award letter. Carefully compare amounts and types of aid awarded. Use this helpful Cost-Financial Aid Award Comparison Sheet to compare cost & financial aid.
     
    * Detailed information about the FAFSA process.
    * A list of documents needed to complete the FAFSA.
    * Line-by-line FAFSA instructions.
    * Common mistakes made when completing the FAFSA.
    * State financial aid deadlines.
    * Assistance for international students.
    * Helpful checklists and more.
     
    Need Further Assistance? Contact:
     
    Jefferson Community College
    1220 Coffeen Street
    Watertown, NY 13601
    315.786.2355
     
    Have the following information available:
    * Driver's License
    * Alien registration card (non-U.S. citizens)
    Student and Parent:
    * Bank Statements and Investment information
    * FAFSA PIN number (for online FAFSA assistance)
    * Social Security numbers
    * Estimated or completed Federal Income Tax Returns for the previous year
    * W-2 forms and other records of income earned for the previous year
    * The previous year's untaxed income information