Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Financial Aid

The following is a guest blog by Richard Blatchley, Director of Financial Aid, Northwestern College

While planning for the new school year, we in the Financial Aid Office would like to take this opportunity to remind you of our commitment to helping you make your Northwestern education an affordable investment.  We encourage you to explore the aid options available to you by visiting our Financial Aid website page.   Here you will find a comprehensive step-by-step plan for applying for financial aid along with answers to questions you may have.  
FAFSA - Free Application for Federal Student Aid
One of the first things to do each year is complete an online FAFSA at http://www.fafsa.ed.gov/.  
  • The FAFSA application is based on you and your parent’s 2011 federal income tax return information.  We suggest you electronically submit your 2011 tax returns 10 days prior to filling out the online FAFSA.     
  • While completing your FAFSA, you will be directed to the IRS Data Retrieval Tool used to simply and securely transfer your tax information directly into your FAFSA application.  This tool will help minimize errors and reduce the possibility of being selected for Verification (requiring additional tax documents).  
  • For details regarding completing the FAFSA and using the IRS Tool, please visit our Submit the FAFSA website page.

Parent Appeal (Optional)
In the Federal application process, there are situations and circumstances that are not addressed on the FAFSA.  This form will give you an opportunity to provide additional information that may enable us to offer more financial assistance.  Families who experience unusual financial challenges may print the appeal form(s) found on the Financial Aid Forms website page.   

Timely application for financial aid is important to ensure that you are considered for all financial aid programs!  It will take two or three weeks for us to process your financial aid award once our office receives all the necessary documents.  We strongly encourage you to complete these forms by March 1, to help us determine your financing options as early as possible. Full funding is not guaranteed for students who complete the application process after May 1.

Feel free to contact us with any questions at (651) 631-5212 or (866) 853-2455.

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