When are your financial aid applications due?
During the college application process this year, you've likely heard the date October 1st mentioned a lot. This is when the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA®) became available for families to complete. In the past, families had to wait until January 1st to complete the FAFSA, so the earlier date of October 1st this year has been widely publicized. You may also have noticed that some schools, in addition to the FAFSA, require the CSS/Financial Aid PROFILE®. The PROFILE also became available on October 1st.
We have received a lot of calls from concerned parents lately worried that they missed the financial aid deadline for their student's school, due to the publicity of the October 1st date. Though these applications for financial aid both became available on October 1st this year, this is not the day these forms are due to colleges and universities. Instead, each school sets its own deadlines for their financial aid applications, which vary from school to school.
Whether you are venturing out of state for college, or remaining here in the Commonwealth, you'll need to find out each school's financial aid deadline. The best way to determine that date is to check the school's website or call the financial aid office. Here are a couple of examples of some Massachusetts schools' regular decision deadlines:
- Bridgewater State has a FAFSA deadline of March 1st. It does not require any additional applications
- Boston University has a deadline of February 1st for the FAFSA and the PROFILE
- Holy Cross has a deadline of January 15th for both the FAFSA and the PROFILE
- Mount Wachusett Community College suggests that students submit the FAFSA by May 1st in order to meet the Massachusetts state financial aid deadline
Students applying early action or early decision (only some schools offer this option) will have different, earlier deadlines, so it's important for students to pay attention to these dates:
- Boston University has an early decision deadline for both the FAFSA and the PROFILE of November 1st and a second early decision deadline of January 3rd
- Holy Cross has an early decision deadline for both the FAFSA and the PROFILE of November 1st
- Bridgewater State and Mount Wachusett Community College do not offer early decision or early action
You should be sure to submit your financial aid applications by each school's deadline! By doing so, you will maximize the financial aid you can receive to help pay for college costs.