Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Scholarships 101

Lately, the guidance department has been getting questions from parents and students regarding scholarships. While at this time of year seniors are encouraged to focus their energy on applying to college, here is a general explanation and timeline of what families can expect as they apply for financial aid.

November - December:

 1). Complete the CSS/Profile on line if your college requires it. This fee-based service allows students to apply for merit aid via the College Board. It generally applies to students who are applying Early Action or Early Decision, but should be completed for any college that requires it. Check out this link for more information: https://profileonline.collegeboard.com/prf/index.jsp

2) Check out national or statewide scholarships. Although they are far more competitive, specific national scholarships are worth applying to if they are specific to your interests, major and/or level of need. Here are some resources to look at, in addition to checking out a few currently posted on Naviance. 


*Please remember to check Naviance on a regular basis for scholarship updates, downloadable applications, and deadlines.

January - February:

3) Complete and submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). All students, regardless of need, should complete a FAFSA because some aid which is merit-based does require this form. Like a tax form, however, it is not available for submission prior to January 1, 2010.  http://www.fafsa.ed.gov/

4) Save the date for Financial Aid Night at BHS! This information session, led by a financial aid counselor from Bentley University, will be held on Thursday, January 7 beginning at 7:00 p.m. in the BHS auditorium. Students and their parents are encouraged to attend. (Snow date:  Jan. 14)

March - April:

5) Apply for local scholarships. The Burlington High School General Scholarship and Burlington Community Scholarship Foundation applications are generally available to students by March 1st. These applications, similar to a "common application," provide students with the opportunity to apply for many scholarships by completing only two forms.  In addition, many other local scholarships will posted on Naviance as they come in (and will require additional forms).  Again, updates will be posted on Naviance on an ongoing basis.

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