What FAFSA is and Why Everyone Should Apply

Image result for fafsa

The FAFSA is now open as of October 1st, and I would hope everyone has been gathering their information to apply for the FAFSA.  But wait? What is the FAFSA?  I actually do hear this nearly everyday when I ask students if they are going to apply.  And it is completely understandable why many don’t know what it is.  So in the event you are unsure what it is and in case you think you might want to apply, here are some really good reasons why everyone should.

“Free Application for Federal Student Aid”

This application is actually important for every student that wants to attend college.  What the FAFSA determines is whether or not a student is eligible for federal aid in the form of Pell grants or student loans.  This is the ONLY way students will know whether they are eligible or not for Pell grants.  Well then, what is a Pell grant?

“A Pell Grant is a subsidy the U.S. federal government provides for students who need it to pay for college. Federal Pell Grants are limited to students with financial need, who have not earned their first bachelor’s degree, or who are enrolled in certain post-baccalaureate programs, through participating institutions.”

Basically, a Pell grant is free money that the government gives to students that show financial need, and then students do not have to pay that money back.  There are certain requirements that a student must meet when accepting a Pell grant (such as committing to going to college at least part-time) but most students have no problem fulfilling that part-time requirement.

If you do not qualify for a Pell grant, you may qualify for student loans.  The great thing about applying for this aid is that you DO NOT have to accept a student loan that might be offered to you through the FAFSA.  Even if you qualify for a student loan, there is no reason that you have to accept it other than if you NEED to.  If you have been able to secure funding through savings, scholarships, Pell grants, parents bank account, there is no reason that you have to accept a student loan.  It is just good to know that in the event that funding doesn’t completely come through, you may have a last resort if you need it.  Student loans do have low interest and easy re-payment plans if this is the path you take as many students do.

Students also should apply for the FAFSA if they are planning on applying for scholarships.  There are many scholarships that require you fill it out, especially those that are needs based.  For example, there is a great scholarship out there (due November 30th) called The Daniels Scholarship.  This one is financial needs based and they want to know what you qualify for regarding federal grants.  That way, The Daniels Scholarship (if you win their award) program can determine what you need from them once the grants run out.

Many colleges will also want you to apply for the FAFSA.  Once you do, the  information is sent to the schools of your choice for their review.  Many times schools will award Merit scholarships based on what your FAFSA might say.  If you just are just shy of qualifying for Pell grants, but almost qualify for a Merit scholarship, they may just award that student the Merit scholarship based on the information they received.

As you can see, there are a great many reasons why everyone should apply for the FAFSA.  ALL students of ALL levels of parent income should still apply. I would encourage all of you to apply today.  You never know what benefits might come from taking a half an hour to fill it out.  Hope this helps!

Here are a few links that you may find helpful:

Three reasons you should fill out the FAFSA

What is a Pell grant?


If you do have questions please remember my door is always open. (:



Scholarship Alert!


For more information: http://corporate.comcast.com/news-information/news-feed/recognizing-the-best-and-brightest-nationwide

The Comcast Leaders and Achievers Scholarship Program is a program for high school seniors who have demonstrated leadership skills, academic achievement, and a commitment to community service.  I will be accepting portfolios for this scholarship through Monday, November 6th, 2017.  After the portfolios are reviewed, one student will be nominated from THS to compete for this scholarship.  This is a great opportunity for you to get started on your scholarship portfolio early!  Please see Mrs. Dangerfield if you have any questions.

Deadline:  November 6, 2017

Application to Comcast due:  November 30, 2017


  • Student must be nominated by a high school counselor or Principal
  • demonstrate leadership abilities in school activities or through work experiences
  • strong commitment to and involvement in community service
  • GPA of 2.8 or higher
  • full-time high school senior
  • Award:  $1,000

Portfolio Guidelines:

  • Cover page:  name, photo, name of scholarship.
  • Leadership, service, and work experience:  include dates, total hours, and brief explanation
  • Copy of your official transcript, including ACT scores
  • 2 letters of recommendation
  • All information must be typed and submitted in a paper or plastic binder (not 3 ring)

Utah College Fair September 23rd

On September 23rd in Salt Lake City, there is a great opportunity for students to go and meet representatives from prospective colleges from across the country.  As of August 31st, there were 85 different schools that had signed up to be to this college fair.

Some schools attending:

Utah State University
Weber State University
Harvard College
Oregon Tech
University of Notre Dame
Southern Utah University
Yale University
Idaho State University
Salt Lake Community College
University of California-Irvine

Any many many more!

The college fair will be held at Juan Diego High School in Draper from 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm.  Registration is not required but is helpful so that you are not having to fill out information cards at every table.  There is no cost to attend this event.  It is completely FREE!

For more information click the link below:
RMACAC College Fair in Salt Lake City

Or, contact Mrs. Dangerfield in the counseling center for more information.

CTE Scholarships


If you are a senior who plans to earn an associate degree or less in a CTE area or a bachelor’s degree with a teaching credential in a CTE area, this scholarship is for you!

Last year, 60% of applicants received a scholarship.

Award amount:  Up to 1 year tuition


CTE Scholarships and Tuition Awards are open to any graduating senior student who plans to get CTE training after high school. This training must result in one of the following

  1. an associate degree or less in a CTE area, or
  2. a bachelor’s degree with a teaching credential in a CTE area.

Candidates must be a legal U.S. resident, have senior status and graduate from a Utah-sponsored, public, secondary school before September 15, 2016. Please note that several colleges and universities also require a 3.0 cumulative GPA . (This includes Dixie Applied Technology College.)

Immediate employment after completing training program is a requirement for all potential award recipients. Employment goal must be clearly stated in the student’s narrative. Address 1) what employment the student intends to seek and 2) how the student plans to obtain related employment once training is completed.

Deadline:  Mail or hand deliver by February 22, 2016.

For guidelines and application, please visit http://schools.utah.gov/CTE/main/Scholarships.aspx or see Mrs. Sanders in the counseling office.

AMS Minority Scholarship

The AMS Minority Scholarship will award funding to minority students who have been traditionally underrepresented in the sciences, especially Hispanic, Native American, and Black/African American students.


  • Must be a U.S. citizen or hold permanent resident status
  • Senior in High School and attending  college in the fall of 2016
  • Must plan to pursue careers in the atmospheric or related oceanic and hydrologic sciences.  Marine Biology is not eligible.
  • Students eligible to apply for the AMS Minority Scholarship Program may also apply to the AMS Freshman Scholarship Program but can only accept one scholarship if selected for both.

Award:  $6,000 two-year scholarship.  $3,000 per year during freshman and sophomore years.

Application procedures:

A completed application includes –

  1. Completed application form (See. Mrs. Sanders in the counseling office for a form)
  2. An official high school transcript showing past three years
  3. One letter of recommendation from a high school teacher or guidance counselor
  4. a copy of scores from a SAT or similar national college entrance exam (ACT)

See Mrs Sanders in the counseling office for more details.

Intertribal Timber Council Scholarship for Native American/Alaskan Natural Resource Students


Intertribal Timber Council

Scholarship Announcement for Native American/Alaskan Natural Resource Students

Purpose:  The Truman d. Picard Scholarship Program is dedicated to the support of Native American students pursuing a higher education in Natural Resources.

Award:  $2,000

Required Material:

  • Letter of Application
  • Resume
  • Evidence of validated enrollment
  • Transcripts

Deadline:  January 11, 2016

For more information, please visit the website http://www.itcnet.org.  Fax or e-mail (itc1@teleport.com) submissions are acceptable as long as they are received by 5:00 p.m. January 11, 2016

See Mrs. Sanders in the counseling office for more information.

Discover Finanicail Services Random Drawing Scholarship

Don’t think you qualify for a scholarship?  Try this one!


  • High school senior age 16 or older
  • plan to attend an accredited, non-profit, four-year undergraduate college or university in the 50 United States.

Award amount:  $2,500

Deadline:  February 29, 2016

It is easy and only takes a minute.  No student loan or purchase is necessary to win.

To enter go to https://www.discover.com/student-loans/scholarships/award.html

Enter to win now through February 29, 2016.  For a complete list of rules click HERE.

If your name was not chosen for one of the drawings, entries are included in future drawings.

When are the drawings?

5 winners will be randomly drawn on:
June 8, 2015
September 7, 2015
December 7, 2015
March 7, 2016