With COVID-19 impacting parents' ability to pay for their child's school, college administrators are encouraging students to fill out their Free Application For Student Aid (FAFSA). As the fall semester approaches, UL Lafayette's enrollment team says there is still time to apply.
"Summertime is an excellent time for students applying for financial aid for the upcoming year," said Dr. DeWayne Bowie.
According to the Associated Press, overall applications were down by 70,000 as of mid-June. The majority of the blame is being put on COVID-19 and the hardships it brings to some families.
"Not having access to technology. Plus, with them not being on their high school campuses for high seniors. So, now not having access and having to do everything electronically, that's a disadvantage for those students as well," said Bowie.
Parts of the process might be harder, but many colleges, including UL, are working remotely to walk students through the process of applying for FAFSA.
"There's a good resource on the application site itself. US Department of Education has some really good advice for you and they guide you through the process," said Bowie.
The application itself is free and could make a vital impact on a student's education.
"You can list up to ten colleges with no cost to you. So, make sure you list any college you're thinking about right now and release it to them. Then they can begin to prepare a financial aid packet for you."
The staff at UL stresses that there's still time to apply for FAFSA in addition to some schools still accepting fall applications to enroll.