Waco collaborates on financial aid applications

By Maria Arevalo

The School and Community Alliance, a working group facilitated by Prosper Waco, collaborated on a project to assist schools with addressing the challenge of students completing their financial aid applications.

House Bill 3 recently introduced a new challenge to schools. Seniors must complete a FAFSA or TASFA financial aid application in order to graduate from high school.

These applications are difficult for students to complete. Complicated and sensitive paperwork is required, parents are heavily involved, and the process can be overwhelming for students.

Schools across the state are brainstorming ways to address this challenge in order to get 100% of their students completing a financial aid application.

The School and Community Alliance aims to bridge gaps within the community in the education field. This working group is an extra pillar of support for rising challenges and opportunities. Through cross-collaborative efforts, the School and Community Alliance created a Financial Aid Festival that was recently held at University High School.

The government and economic classes competed against each other to see which class had the most students completing a financial aid application. Each student that completed a financial aid application was also entered in a giveaway wherein they could receive a gift card.

Financial aid experts and community volunteers were on site at the UHS campus to assist students and families completing their financial aid applications.

This is a wonderful example of the community joining forces to assist students in gaining one more step towards their educational goals.

Maria Arevalo is director of post-secondary initiatives with Prosper Waco.