Fremont Area Medical Center

SUM 2013

Spirit of Women magazine is a national publication presented to women by hospitals and their physicians. The magazine provides up-to-date, evidence-based healthcare information and promotes our hospitals as leaders in women's health excellence.

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F I N A N C I A L F I T N E S S Top tips for fnding college fnancial aid S 8 SPI RIT O F WOM EN S U M M E R 2 013 w w w. s p i r i t o f w o m e n . c o m aid programs to filling out FAFSA forms. The federal government, for example, offers online tools that are designed to make college costs more transparent, while other websites can help direct you to scholarships based on the studentÕs extracurricular interests, academic record and demographics. But be wary of any websites that ask you to pay for information about scholarships or request your Social Security or financial account numbers, adds Kantrowitz. ÒIf you have to pay money, itÕs probably a scam,Ó he says. • Financial aid resources on the web • U.S. Department of Education College Afordability and Transparency Center – variety of interactive tools http://collegecost.ed.gov/ • FAFSA4Caster – tool for estimating expected family contribution before fling FAFSA form https://fafsa.ed.gov/FAFSA/app/ f4cForm?execution=e1s1 • College Goal Sunday – free volunteer-run events with fnancial aid professionals in 37 states and the District of Columbia www.collegegoalsundayusa.org • FinAid – fnancial aid information, advice and tools www.fnaid.org • Fastweb – free scholarship-matching service www.fastweb.com SHUTTERSTOCK pending next New YearÕs Day filling out financial aid forms could put your college-bound teen a step closer to cheering on his or her favorite school from the student section. ThatÕs because filing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) as soon as possible after Jan. 1 is a great way to maximize your college aid money, say experts. ÒThe FAFSA is also used for financial aid from state governments and from most colleges and universities,Ó says Mark Kantrowitz, publisher of FinAid and Fastweb, the granddaddies of college financial aid websites. Some states have aid deadlines early in the year, says Kantrowitz, and funds are awarded on a first-come, first-served basis in Illinois, Kentucky, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Vermont and Washington. ÒSchools often have their own deadlines for aid too, so the sooner you apply, the more money [many] schools will have in their budget [to offer you],Ó he says. Timing can also pay off when it comes to applying for private scholarships. The majority of college scholarship application deadlines are in the fall and spring of a studentÕs senior year, so donÕt wait until spring to seek out scholarships, as many families do, says Kantrowitz. ÒThere are also scholarships you can win in [the studentÕs] younger years as well,Ó he adds. Although the financial aid maze can be intimidating, free help is available for everything from finding merit

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