PARENTS

What are financial resources?

There are several free, comprehensive, objective, and independent guides to student financial aid resources.

What are the key financial aid terms?
EFC: Expected family contribution
COA: Cost of attendance
FAFSA: Free application for federal student aid
CSS: College Scholarship Service Profile
Grant: Financial aid that does not need to be paid back
Net Price: The full price of attending school minus the aid the student receives

CSS Profile – Institutional financial aid application – profileonline.collegeboard.com/prf/index.jsp

  • Financial aid application for many private colleges
  • Profile is always used in conjunction with the FAFSA. Therefore both applications must be submitted to these schools.
  • Profile treats income and assets differently than the FAFSA. For example home equity is not protected under the CSS Profile formula, and income from the non-custodial divorced parent must be included in ability to pay.
  • CSS Profile maybe submitted earlier than Jan. 2nd.
  • Tax returns are often requested by colleges after financial aid award is made.

Scholarships
Scholarships can be an important piece in financing a college education. They are available to students for academic achievement; to students with special abilities or talents; for leadership or community service, or because of ethnicity, nationality, family background, or parent occupation. There are thousands of scholarships out there but students must be proactive in pursuit of most scholarship opportunities.

Here are some useful scholarship search websites:

Massachusetts State Scholarships

Civic Scholarships

National and College Scholarship/Merit Websites

Articles on Merit