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  JUNIOR YEAR - Going to college can change your life forever! But figuring out where to go and how to get there can be tough. At the conclusion of your junior year, these three simple steps can make navigating the course to college much easier.

  • SAT/ACT testing
    If you haven't already done so, complete the necessary forms to take (or retake!) the SAT's or ACT's.
  • Begin evaluating college choices
    Sure, it can be hard. You're looking for a combination of things, and you'll want to know which schools offer them. So what's important to you? A specific degree program? A big-city or small town campus? A place that's close to home, or really far away? An atmosphere that's culturally diverse?
  • Apply for scholarships
    Going to college takes money. And the more you know about where and how to get it, the easier it will be for you to attend the school of your choice. But where do you start? How do you qualify for grants or scholarships? Researching the answers can be a headache. But it doesn't have to be. Learn everything you need to know in the FASTaiD Scholarship section, then use FASTap to find your scholarships. Don't delay...many scholarship and grant applications need to be received early in your senior year for consideration for your freshman year in college.
SENIOR YEAR - The clock is ticking!! Follow these easy steps to stay on course:

  August / September
  • Begin with choosing your college(s). Send away for college applications and information.
  • Use FASTap to research and apply for private scholarships.
  October / November
  • Create a schedule of admissions and financial aid deadlines for yourself.
  • Use your winter break to earn money. Find a good winter break job.
  • Check your FASTap mailbox for new college and scholarship information.
  • Submit applications for early decision/early action programs if you are sure about which college you want to attend.
  • Check with a local high school guidance office, bank or public library to find a scheduled financial aid night presentation.
  • Obtain all financial aid forms that may be required by your intended schools and visit FASTap to apply for more scholarships.
  • Obtain a Free Application for Student Financial Aid (FAFSA) (available 1/1/98 at high schools, colleges and libraries, or by calling 1-800-4-fed-aid. FAFSA is also available online--along with additional college information at
  • Complete, copy, and submit FAFSA. (ASAP! Don't wait for deadline!) Parents should compile income tax information and complete taxes early to facilitate FAFSA completion.
  • Check with a local high school guidance office, bank or public library to find a scheduled financial aid night presentation.
  February / March
  • Be sure that you have submitted all required financial aid forms. Thousands of private scholarships have March 1, 1998 application deadlines.
  • Visit FASTap again and send off those applications!
  • If required, send copies of your income tax forms to financial aid offices.
  • Receive your Student Aid Report (SAR). (About 4 weeks after you submit FAFSA).
  • Check with your school's financial aid office if they need a copy of the SAR.
  April / May
  • Sign and return financial aid forms.
  • Receive admissions notifications and compare your financial aid packages. Seek to optimize rather than maximize your award.
  • Finalize your college choice, and promptly notify them that you accept and send them your final transcript and student loan applications.
  • Contact your financial aid office to check status.
  • Contact admissions and financial aid offices of schools whose enrollment/aid offers you have decided to decline. (Other students may be waiting for your spot/aid).
  • Check your FASTap mailbox. Now that you have chosen a specific college you may find other sources of aid.
  • Look for a summer job.
  June / July
  • Complete any remaining financial aid forms.
  • Check your FASTap mailbox. New awards are added daily, and several "last minute" awards may have been added. Plus, it's never too early to look for next year!

  FASTaiD 1998 CEE       All rights reserved. Do not copy or redistribute in any form.         Mail: Editor