The Coordinating Commission is leading an effort in Nebraska to encourage more high school students to apply for federal financial aid to attend college.
As part of the U.S. Department of Education’s new FAFSA Completion Initiative, the Commission can provide certain designated entities – typically high schools – with limited data about students’ progress in completing and filing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The timely completion of a FAFSA is an essential step for many families in obtaining financial aid. The U.S. Department of Education reports that less than 55 percent of seniors complete the FAFSA. Meanwhile, studies show a 25-30 percent increase in the likelihood of low-income students starting college if they complete the FAFSA.
The FAFSA Initiative will enable the designated entities to better target counseling, filing help, and other resources to those students. Identifying such students can promote college access and success by ensuring students, particularly low-income students, have access to financial aid.
The Commission received funding from the Legislature in 2015 for the implementation of the initiative’s software.