Applying for College and Financial Aid

Teresa Hansen, a school counselor at Mt. Rainier High School was looking for some financial help for their graduating seniors who needed help with applying for financial aid. Teresa told us, “we host two evening programs for high school seniors to help them prepare for college: “The College Application Event” and “College Goal Sunday” (filing the FAFSA for financial aid).

These events help students accomplish necessary college access requirements that they might not complete without support. Our teachers generously offer the use of their classrooms, computers and printers but the cost of printing can be high. I am requesting funds to buy two printer cartridges.”

In her final report, Teresa told us: the main emphasis on our event was to bring in those students and families who may not have been able to complete and submit their FAFSA applications without additional help and support. Many of the students were first generation college. These students and families also had some circumstances that were not easy to explain with the FAFSA form. That is why having experts from NELA (Northwest Education Loan Association) and Highline Community College made such a huge difference for them.

My belief, and one that I share with my colleagues, is that without events such as this one, many of these students would not complete their FAFSA applications and would not be on the path to attending college next year.  See the flyer below for more information.

Applying for College and Financial Aid

College Goal “Sunday” – FAFSA Night, January 10, 2013

Student Comments

1. I attended the FAFSA event because:

  • I thought I would have many questions and my parents wanted to be informed
  • I had no idea how to apply for financial aid

2. Having some expert help with FAFSA helped me in this way:

  • Knowing experts to contact for more questions
  • They helped me through the application questions

3.  How did you and your family like the library/computer environment? Did it help you to be able to print documents?

  • It made it convenient
  • We liked it because we do not have a printer at home so it was helpful that it was provided

4. We have this event every year. Would you recommend it to other students as a helpful event to attend?

  • Yes, because there are a lot of confusing questions
  • Yes, it helped to have experts to help us understand some of the questions

Thank you Teresa for everything you and your colleagues do to help our students every day!

Since 1999, the Highline Schools Foundation has been supporting innovation and excellence in Highline Public Schools. Our funding priorities focus on programs to improve academic achievement, supporting college and career readiness, grants to teachers for engaging classroom projects, the arts, athletics, and programs that keep students in school and productive. Highline is a district full of need and opportunity. The Highline Schools Foundation is the only non-profit organization dedicated to all schools in our district—our goal is to help as many students as possible be successful!

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