FAFSA - The How-To Guide for High School Students

The Center for New York City Affairs has published the second edition of its very popular guide for high school students who are applying to college and beginning their all-important quest for financial aid: FAFSA: The How-To Guide for High School Students (And the Adults Who Help Them).

This year's guide has been updated with the latest information and links as well as new information on the latest FAFSA verification demands and a new section on how to compare college financial aid offers.

We hope this guide will be useful to students, families and the many caring adults in New York City public schools and communities who help families navigate the U.S. Department of Education's Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The guide was made possible with support from Capital One Bank, which is committed to empowering students and providing resources for their academic future.

Filling out the FAFSA form is the first step for nearly all students seeking support to go to college. Understanding the form and handling it confidently is crucial for college matriculation and success.

The How-To Guide was written in partnership with New York City's most experienced college guidance and financial aid professionals. It addresses the most common questions of local students and families. Topics include: understanding how the form works, addressing citizenship questions, and demystifying how the FAFSA defines parents and households.

A new section of the guide has been designed to help students after they file the FAFSA. We explain what is involved in federal government's increasingly common verification process. We look at the components of a typical college financial aid package and we explain how to compare college offers. As it has been in the past, the How-To Guide is easy to read. We hope it will demystify the FAFSA and make it less intimidating.

We have also created a new website for educators and families available atwww.understandingfafsa.org. The website features PDFs of the guide in English andSpanish as well as a presentation version suitable for classrooms and large groups. Print copies are available while supplies last. Please go to www.freefafsaguide.com to order.

Take a look now to see how it may be useful to you or others in your school or organization. We grant blanket permission for photocopying and distribution, and we hope you will promote the guide on your organization's website or in electronic newsletters. Feel free to contact Kim Nauer at nauerk@newschool.edu with any questions or comments.