Pasfaa website Resource Guide Pennsylvania Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators

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The Pennsylvania Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (PASFAA), through the efforts of the Technology Advisory and Electronic Initiatives Committee, is pleased to provide this Resource Guide to you. The purpose of this guide is to provide a list of some of the websites that are most useful not only to students, but also to those involved in helping students to achieve their educational goals. We hope you find this resource useful.
PASFAA Website Resource Guide

Pennsylvania Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators

College Search

College Comparisons:

*username: mountunion

*password: rojans
College Opportunities On-Line:
College Search:
Planning for College:
SAT/ACT Information & Tips

National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics
National Collegiate Athletic Association
National Junior College Athletic Association

*Each college has its own athletics webpage with more information and forms for prospective student athletes.

Government Sites

Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry

  • Bureau of Blindness and Visual Services

  • Office of Vocational Rehabilitation

Pennsylvania (Official State Site)
Tax Credit Information
US Citizenship and Immigration Services
US Corporation for National Service
US Department of Education
US Department of Veterans Affairs
US House of Representatives
US Internal Revenue Service
US President
US Selective Service System
US Senate
US Social Security Administration

PASFAA Website Resource Guide (continued)

Financial Aid Resources
International Education Financial Aid
Military Service

  • GI Bill

  • ROTC

  • Army:

  • AirForce:

  • Navy:

  • Marines:

National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators
National Student Loan Data System
Overview of Financial Aid
Pennsylvania Assistance (PA Loans) (PA State Grants)
Scholarship Search

U.S. Department of Education

Applying for Financial Aid
*Apply for a PIN number

*Federal School Codes

*Submit Free Application for Federal Student Aid on-line
Get this and more at:
ATTENTION: Do not use or you will have to pay to submit your application. is free.

College Savings
College Savings (PA Tuition Account Program)
Budgets, Debt Management

Frequently Requested Telephone Numbers:
General Information About Federal Aid:

1-800-4-FED-AID (1-800-433-3243)

Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency Grant and Loan Programs


Scholarship and Resource Web Sites
College Search, Preparation, and Financial Aid: - Provides resources for students and parents, including college admissions, essay tips, what to expect in college, and even what you should pack! - Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency’s (PHEAA) web resource for students and parents to help plan and pay for college. - Use the college scatterplots to compare your academic information with students who have been successfully admitted to college. - PHEAA’s main website; great financial aid resources. - PA loans. - Options for student loans and financial aid.

Scholarship Search Sites: - Create a profile to find scholarships that match your specific needs and interests. - Another great scholarship search engine! - The Cappex merit aid search engine. - Scholarship search, along with college search and other resources. - Look for local scholarships!

*See your future college web site for scholarships.

Avoiding Scholarship Scams
Scholarship scams have been around for years. According to the Federal Trade Commission, if you hear these lines from a scholarship service, you may be getting duped:

  • “The scholarship is guaranteed or your money back.” No one can guarantee that you’ll get a grant or a scholarship. Refund guarantees often have conditions or strings attached. Get refund policies in writing, and read the fine print.

  • “You can’t get this information anywhere else.” There are thousands of scholarships you can research through free means. It’s highly doubtful that a company would have an exclusive list of scholarships that you can’t find through another source.

  • “I just need your credit card or bank account number to hold this scholarship.” Don’t give your credit card or bank account number without getting information in writing first. You might become a victim of an unauthorized withdraw from your account.

  • “We’ll do all the work.” Don’t be fooled. You must apply for scholarships or grants yourself.

  • “The scholarship will cost money.” Don’t pay anyone who claims to be “holding” a scholarship or grant for you.

  • “You’ve been selected” by a “national foundation” to receive a scholarship, or “You’re a finalist” in a contest you never entered. Before you reply to a scholarship offer you didn’t initiate, check it out. Make sure the foundation or program is legitimate.

What to do if you suspect an offer is a scam
Start with your school counselor. Also, the following organizations can help you decide if an offer is legitimate. They will tell you whether they have received any complaints about the company, or whether the company is currently under investigation. Look for these organizations online or call for more information:

  • Better Business Bureau in the city where the scholarship service is located

  • Federal Trade Commission, 1-877-FTC-HELP or

  • State bureau of consumer protection

  • State attorney general’s office

  • National Fraud Information Center (NFIC),

For more information about scholarship scams, visit

For more information about college costs and financial aid, visit the Pay for College section at

COLLEGE ACCESS Visit to learn about the college and financial aid resources available in each state. is a resource provided by the nation’s guaranty agencies that features comprehensive information about career planning, planning for college, finding a college and paying for college. Each state includes detailed information about the programs and services available to students and families in that state. This Web site is intended to be a resource for students, families, guidance counselors, colleges and community organizations. Below are the resources included on the Web site:
Career Planning

  • Career assessment tools

  • Details on different types of careers, required training and career satisfaction surveys

  • State and local resources available that showcase employment opportunities

College Planning

  • Detailed information for elementary, middle/junior, and high school students as well as adult learners and parents

  • Information on college entrance exams

Finding a College

Paying for College

  • How to apply for federal financial aid

  • How to save for college

  • How to calculate the costs of college

  • Information on federal and state loans available

State Resources

  • College resource centers

  • College information and financial aid awareness events

  • Access programs available (Upward Bound, Talent Search, GEAR UP, Project Grad, etc.)

  • Link to state-specific access programs listed in the Pathways to College Network/National College Access Network National College Access Program Directory

  • Scholarships and grants

The Web site was developed in conjunction with Mapping Your Future as part of the College Access Initiative, which was included in the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005, and formalizes a foundational role of guaranty agencies in promoting access to postsecondary education. Guaranty agencies are state and non-profit entities that, through their administration of the Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) Program, inform students and parents of educational and financial aid opportunities. As part of their public service mission, guaranty agencies provide an extensive range of services and programs that increase awareness of the importance of higher education, the opportunities available, and the financial support offered.

If you have a program or resource you believe should be included on the site, contact your state guaranty agency or the National Council of Higher Education Loan Programs at 202-822-2106.
For Students and Parents: What is Career Cruising?
Career Cruising is an Internet-based career exploration and planning tool used by your son or daughter to explore career and college options and develop a career plan. Career Cruising can be accessed from school, from home, or wherever your son or daughter has access to the Internet. Features of the program include:
Interest and Skills Assessment – a world-renowned career assessment tool to help people identify suitable career options based on their interests and skills
Career Profiles – thorough and up-to-date information about hundreds of different occupations, including direct links between careers and related college programs
Multimedia Interviews – Interviews with real people in each occupation, which add depth and realism to career profiles
College and Financial Aid Information – comprehensive college and financial aid information, with a number of useful search tools to help students find the right college and the right scholarships
Electronic Career Portfolio – available online, so students can develop their education and career plans from wherever they access Career Cruising
Resume Builder – integrated with the portfolio to help students format and print professional-looking resumes quickly and easily

To find out more about Career Cruising, we encourage you to login using the school’s access information:

Login at:

Username: mountunion

Password: trojans

Click on “Start Career Cruising” to begin


Making College Happen—Financially!

Junior Year

  • Begin looking for outside scholarship opportunities

    • Visit your high school guidance office

    • Counselors often have information and applications for local scholarships. They may also be able to provide you with access to scholarship search software and scholarship guides.

    • Explore the internet, including the PASFAA website at, to find free scholarship search information.

    • Read scholarship search books.

    • You can typically find these guides in libraries and bookstores, as well as your high school guidance office.

    • Find out if your church, parents’ employers, or any other organization with which your family is affiliated offers scholarships.

  • Visit the web sites or call/visit the Financial Aid Offices of the colleges you are considering attending. Try to get answers to these questions:

    • What institutional scholarships are available for new students?

    • What is the criteria for receiving these awards? How do students apply? Is there an admission deadline or application deadline to be considered for these scholarships? Are they renewable for more than one academic year? If so, what is the criteria for renewal? Are there a limited number of scholarships?

    • What types of need-based student aid (such as grants and loans) does the institution offer?

    • What student aid applications and documentation does the institution require and when are their deadlines?

    • When can you expect to receive a student aid package from the institution?

    • How will outside sources of student aid, such as outside scholarships, affect the aid the institution might award you?

  • Keep studying and continue working hard to get good grades.

    • This should be a priority throughout high school—it may mean the difference between winning a scholarship or not.

    • If your parents or other family members will be involved in paying for your education, talk seriously with them about how much they plan to contribute, the student aid application process, etc. Make sure everyone understand his or her role.

Senior Year – Fall

  • Student and parents should each apply for a federal pin number at to use as their electronic signature on the FAFSA and to make corrections to it.

  • Ask the colleges to which you have applied if they can provide you with an early estimate of the types of student aid you may be eligible to receive.

  • Apply for outside scholarships (deadlines will vary throughout your senior year).

  • Attend a financial aid workshop offered by your high school or community.

  • If you have not already done so, attend open houses at the colleges you are considering—be sure to attend any financial aid sessions that are offered.

  • Complete the CSS Profile if you are applying to schools that require this form as part of their student aid application process. Obtain the CSS Profile from your guidance office or register and complete the form on-line at

More than 500,000 Pennsylvania students receive student aid to help pay for their education.
YOU could be one of them!

Online Student Aid Resources

Senior Year – Winter

  • Complete tax returns as soon as possible (keep copies).

    • Both parents and student should take care of this task as soon as they are able. This is critical since this income information is needed to complete student aid applications.

  • Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) anytime after January 1.

  • This application is used to determine student eligibility for federal and, in Pennsylvania, state student aid. Colleges and universities may also use the information reported on this form in determining eligibility for institutional student aid.

  • If you do not receive one in the mail in December, obtain one from your guidance counselor or a financial aid office. This form may be submitted via mail or may be completed on-line at

  • Make a copy of the FAFSA (and any other student aid form you complete) before submitting it.

  • Each school has different deadlines for submitting the FAFSA. Be sure to meet them (some are as early as February 1). The deadline for consideration for Pennsylvania State Grant aid is May 1.

  • List on the FAFSA each college to which you are applying and from which you would like to receive a student aid package. Up to six schools can be listed, initially. Additional schools can be added by calling 1-800-4FEDAID, via the Internet or on the Student Aid Report.

  • Submit all other required applications and paperwork to each of the colleges to which you are applying—be sure to make copies and meet deadlines.

  • Complete outside scholarship applications.

Senior Year – Spring

  • Receive and compare actual student aid packages

    • After completing the student aid application requirements for a given school, you will receive an award letter detailing aid you are eligible to receive if you attend that institution.

    • As you receive these letters, remember to compare the total aid and type of aid (loans, grants, etc.), you will receive to the total cost of the school (include books and transportation costs)—what is left for you to pay out-of-pocket?

  • Develop a plan for how you are going to pay for any out-of-pocket expense.

    • Are you (or your parents or other family members who are going to assist you) prepared to pay this amount?

    • Does the college you plan to attend offer a monthly payment plan?

    • If you need additional assistance, talk with the financial aid office at the college about other options. For example, there are alternative education loans that you may choose to utilize.

    • Decide which college you will attend.

    • Most schools have a May 1 deadline for submitting an enrollment deposit.

    • Inform other schools to which you were accepted that you will be enrolling elsewhere.

Summer After Senior Year

  • Inform the Financial Aid Office of any outside awards you’ve received.

  • Inquire about the availability of campus jobs at the college you are attending.

  • Complete any remaining paperwork required to finalize the student aid application process.

    • Students borrowing federal student loans for the first time must complete “entrance counseling”.

    • Loan borrowers will also need to complete a Master Promissory Note (MPN).

    • Check with the school to be sure all obligations are fulfilled.


Pennsylvania Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators American Education Services Creating Access to Education

PASFAA is a dynamic organization representing more than 300 American Education Services

Pennsylvania schools, lenders, and other organizations involved 1200 North Seventh St.

with higher education. Harrisburg, PA 17102-1444

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