You can Apply for Student Aid via the new Mobile FAFSA App
◙ August 5, 2020 | Posted by: foodsupport.org | Written by: Aria C. | Related: Federal Pell Grants
You can apply for student aid with the FAFSA or Free Application for Federal Student Aid with an app from next spring. Your student aid application process is going mobile and can be done wherever you are. You don’t need to have a computer to complete the FAFSA process.
The Department of Education recently inaugurated this modern approach to applying for financial aid. Nicknamed as the Next Generation Financial Services Environment, parents and students can now fill out their FAFSA form right from their smartphone and tablets. This app would be made available from Spring and would make it so much easier to apply for a student loan.
According to the U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos, it’s about time for such a transformation and advancement in the application process. She also says that this is the first step in their commitment to make sure that the experience students, parents and borrowers have with the Office of Federal Student Aid is improved, better and more advanced. This makes applying for Federal Student Loan more efficient in the 21st century. Now more students can process their student aid application with more ease and get the loan they deserve.
The Significance Behind This Advancement
This is a major improvement to the student loan application system because till now only 60% of high school seniors actually complete out the FAFSA forms. According to an article in the Insider Higher Ed, there are even fewer students amongst the low-income families who successfully apply for the FAFSA. Sadly, these are the students who would most definitely benefit from the student aid this program offers.
It was reported last month that 648,000 students who were eligible for Pell grants, did not turn in or finish filing out the FAFSA application process this year. This means an average of $3583 in student aid was left behind.
FAFSA hopes to change this trend and make the application process more accessible by going mobile. By allowing the application to be done through an app, advocates hope that more people complete the application in ease and get the benefits. Imagine how many more students would find it easier to apply for these grants with the new mobile app.
According to Carrie Warick, director of policy and advocacy at the National College Access Network, students coming from low income families tend to only get internet access when they are on school grounds or on their smartphones. This mobile app, to be launched next spring would help provide them the access to fill out the 100 over questions that appear on their financial aid application, right from their phone. They can fill it out without sitting by a computer for hours, and without relying on a public computer for hours.
More Upcoming Improvements
Making FAFSA mobile accessible is only the first of many changes that have been proposed. By the Fall of 2018, the education department also plans to merge the FAFSA website and the Federal Student Aid website. This would hopefully make the process of applying for federal aid even easier.
Eventually, the education department hopes to integrate every consumer facing websites into one platform that students, parents, and borrowers find user friendly and can proceed with the entire process. This way everything from the application to the repayment is handled on one platform.
A Senate committee met to discuss how the Congress could simplify the FAFSA application for future applicants. The Chronicles of Higher Education provided suggestions such as reducing the number of questions, using data from the IRS to decide eligibility of the Pell Grant awards, and also phasing out the annual status determinations for homeless students.
Lawmakers also included that students face a huge burden when their FAFSA applications get audited. Money reported that in the event their application gets flagged, they have to endure an intense verification process. This would certainly make it more stressful on students who fear that their entire academic future lies in the verdict of this application process.
Therefore, it would be nice if the process of applying for the FAFSA is made simple for future applicants. This would certainly make the student aid more available to students who truly could benefit from the process.