FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid)

We strongly encourage all seniors planning on attending a two or four year college/university or trade school next year to file a FAFSA form. Filing online is recommended.

FAFSA becomes available for completion on October 1 of your senior year and is due by March 1. Some colleges may request an earlier deadline for scholarship consideration. NHS recommends students submit their FAFSA by Dec. 31 to ensure the largest financial aid award.

FAFSA Guide:

What is FAFSA ?

Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is a form that the federal government uses to determine eligibility for student aid. Your financial aid package may include grants, scholarships, work-study opportunities, and loans. The form collects financial and demographic data. 

How do I fill it out?

Filling out the FAFSA is FREE!

Be sure to visit www.fafsa.ed.gov to get started. 

What else should I know?

When completing an electronic FAFSA, you will be required to provide your signature and a parent’s signature. There are two different ways to do this:

  1. Use your FSA ID (read more on the FSA ID below) issued by the U.S. Department of Education to electronically sign your FAFSA. (It is recommended you create your FSA ID before starting the FAFSA as it will save you some time on your FAFSA). Your parents will also need their own FSA ID to electronically sign your FAFSA.
  2. Print the signature page, get the required signatures and mail the form to the address listed on your signature page. 

What is an FSA ID and how do I get one?

The FSA ID is the number the U.S. Department of Education uses to identify you online. An FSA ID allows you to (1) electronically sign your FAFSA to speed up the process, (2) check the status of your electronic FAFSA, and (3) make corrections to your personal information online. If you had a PIN # for your on financial aid or from previous children, you can link your old PIN with your new FSA ID. For questions about FAFSA on the web or about your FSA ID, call 1-800-4-FED-AID.

Students and parents can visit: http://fsaid.ed.gov/npas/index.htm 

*Keep your FSA ID private, as it allows you (or someone else) to electronically sign federal documents and access confidential information!

Completing the FAFSA:

Tip 1: The FAFSA becomes available after October 1st.

Tip 2: Submit the FAFSA whether or not you think you qualify for financial aid. Sometimes being rejected for federal aid is a prerequisite for receiving private funds.

Tip 3: Review and resubmit all your data on the FAFSA every year. Your eligibility CAN change from year to year, depending on your family’s circumstances.

Tip 4: Apply for aid as soon as possible after OCTOBER 1st

Tip 5: Contact your prospective college’s financial aid office for additional information. Your school may require forms besides the FAFSA or may have earlier submission deadlines. In 4-6 weeks after completing the FAFSA, you will receive a Student Aid Report (SAR).

Tip 6: Read your Student Aid Report (SAR) carefully. The colleges and universities to which you have applied (and those that you reported on your FAFSA form) will send you a Student Aid Report from their school. You and your prospective college will each receive copies. Report errors to the financial aid officer at your prospective school.

Tip 7: Call the Federal Processor at 1-319-337-5665 if you do not receive your SAR in 4-6 weeks. Be ready to provide your Social Security Number and date of birth for verification.

Tip 8: Check to see if your SAR has been selected for verification. Look under the date for the letters EFC followed by a series of numbers. If there is an Asterisk (*) after your EFC, your SAR has been selected. 30% of forms will be asked for verification you must respond immediately!

Tip 9: If asked for SAR verification, submit the information requested to your prospective colleges financial aid office as soon as possible.

Your aid may be delayed or decreased if the materials are not promptly provided.

What you need to complete your FAFSA:

  • Your social security number
  • Your drivers license number, if you have one
  • Your W-2 forms 
  • Your federal income tax returns
  • Your current bank statements and records of stocks, bonds and other investments
  • Your records of other untaxed income received, such as Social Security, Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF), welfare or Veteran’s Benefits
  • Your business or farm records, if applicable
  • Your alien registration number, if you are not a U.S. Citizen
  • If you are a dependent student, you will also need:
  • Your parent(s) social security number(s)
  • Your parent(s) income and financial records (as listed above)

Use income records for the calendar year prior to the academic year for which you are applying for financial aid. 

For questions once your FAFSA is filed, do not contact the Federal Government or NHS, call the college or university of interest.



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