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FAFSA Applications Due March 1st

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
FAFSA Applications Due March 1st

FAFSA applications are due Tuesday, March 1st for Upper Cumberland high school seniors.

Livingston Academy Gear Up Coordinator Vanessa Farris said that FAFSA applications open the door for grant and loan opportunities for higher education. She said that the deadline also affects Tennessee Promise, a program that provides 2 years of free tuition at any TCAT or community college in the state.

“Most of the jobs out there whether it be a 4-year degree or a 2-year community college degree or that technical degree,” Farris said. “Having those skills is going to lead to a higher-paying job and the chance that they will stay with that job long-term and have that stability. And I  just want all of our students to have that opportunity.”

Farris said that the biggest hurdle for most students is to figure out which guardian’s information they should use to begin the application. She said that with many students in Overton having different living situations, it can be confusing where to start.

Farris said that she equates the application process to filing taxes and filling out that information. She said that the FAFSA application is able to connect with the IRS for tax information so that it automatically fills out on the form, completing a sometimes tedious step for the applicant.

“For those of us who do it frequently takes us about 30 to 45 minutes a student to fill out, but that’s with us being trained,” Farris said. “For parents that have never done one, it’s quite technical. It’s like doing your tax returns on the computer and there are just some little technical things that if you aren’t used to doing it, you may need help. And that’s why a lot of us as school counselors, Gear Up people, any college access people and even the college financial aid people are really willing to help parents do that first-time FAFSA for their students so that it doesn’t become so time-consuming.”


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