About the Money
When it comes to college,
is it all about the money? This is Chris,
and this is Taylor. Like most other college students,
they have some money concerns related to earning their degree.
(Chris) How will I ever pay for college?
(Taylor) How do I finish my degree
without being saddled with huge debt?
(Narrator) Luckily for Taylor, Chris,
and every other community college student, the Internet is an extremely valuable resource
for learning about Financial Aid.
Learning about how Financial Aid works
can be overwhelming at first, but trust us, it's worth investing your
time and energy in it. Here's a quick test. You decide whether this statement
sounds like a good idea or a bad one.
(Student) This financial aid
information is really complicated. I've got a job, I'd rather just work
more hours and pay for it myself.
Audio description: Select either Good Idea or Bad Idea
(Narrator) Bad idea! You've already
invested in yourself as a student by deciding to go to college. Focus on school so you can complete
your academic goals in a timely manner.
Luckily, you are or are about to become a
California Community College (CCC) student. The CCCs have simplified the process
from beginning to end. Please allow us to introduce you
On this website, you can find help
for each step of the process. Step 1 will answer the question,
"Am I eligible for financial aid?" Step 2 will help you get ready to apply. Pro tip: the application process
will be much easier if you gather the necessary information and documents you
need like your social security card, permanent residency card (if you have one), W2 forms and other tax records,
ahead of time. Step 3 will guide you through
the application process for The Free Application for
Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and a few other common
California grant opportunities you should investigate
as you look for money. Step 4 will let you know
where you can get help at your local community college
financial aid office. Step 5 will let you know what happens
once you submit your FAFSA application.
And this is really just the beginning
of how you can use icanaffordcollege.com. On this site you'll also find: descriptions of the different types of aid
available, special resources for Veterans, information about the Dream Act, and more ... Two pages you won't want to miss are: Important Dates/Deadlines page, and Board of Governor's Fee Waiver page. So why not start today?
After you've figured out what kind
of financial aid you qualify for, keep in mind that there are additional costs
during your time as a college student. Not only is there a wide range of incomes
among community college students, but there is an equally wide
range of expenses. Some students are only supporting themselves,
while others are also supporting large families. Whatever your income and expenses, you are in good company among
other community college students.
After you've learned more about Financial
Aid and how it can help you, you'll want to start thinking about the best
way to manage your funds and school-related expenses. The California Community Colleges
can help with this too! At www.cashcourse.org, you can register for
the CCC's free comprehensive money management tool. You'll also find videos, quizzes, and financial
tools that will help you learn the basics of budgeting and how to complete your education
without running up a huge amount of debt. We'll teach you how to manage your funds
and estimate how much money you may need to earn to support yourself
during college and beyond. The site provides practical financial skills
without selling any financial products or services ——there's no "catch"!
The Bottom Line
The bottom line is this: One of the biggest reasons students don't
complete their academic goals is that they spend too much
time and energy at work. But if you take advantage of the
various kinds of financial help that California Community Colleges offer,
you can make the most of your time as a student and save money
at the same time.
In this module we've introduced you
to a couple of important websites
you won't want to miss, but there
are numerous other resources
you'll want to investigate to get
the most bang for your buck!
Be sure to visit the Financial Aid office
at your local community college
for assistance as well.
They are experts in this area
and will have additional information
on scholarships and grants
that you'll want to check out too!