<p>I'm a senior this year and thinking a lot about financial aid and things of this nature. I have been looking at some sample FAFSA forms and am quite concerned. From what I understand, they require a lot of information from your tax returns. My mom is a single parent and draws disability, so naturally there aren't any taxes done. Is there an exemption for this? Will I still be eligible for the FAFSA? Thanks anyone for any knowledge on the topic.</p>

<p>If you are not required to file a tax return and you don't, there's a box that you can check on the online FAFSA that says something like, "Will Not File".</p>

<p>You will likely have an EFC of 0.</p>

<p>That doesn't mean that schools have to meet your need. Most schools cannot meet need. </p>

<p>Students with high "need" must carefully select their schools otherwise they could end up with acceptances that are not affordable. </p>

<p>And, some privates will want the financial info of your dad if he's alive. </p>

<p>What schools are you considering?</p>

<p>What are your stats?</p>

<p>Note that the EFC determines whatever federal funds you are eligible for. It is not a guarantee that your family will only pay that amount. Most colleges in the US cannot meet full need, and the one's that do will use a different formula to determine what families can pay (CSS profile or an institutional form).</p>

<p>Very true....</p>

<p>I really, really wish the federal gov't would come up with a different term other than Expected Family Contribution. It very wrongly suggests that a student's EFC is all they have to pay...as if colleges are required to charge some kind of sliding scale. Schools are under no obligation to do anything with EFC other than use it to determine any federal aid.</p>

<p>As far as stats go, i have near a 3.5 gpa. i havent checked it since last semester, but my grades stay pretty level, so it should be about the same. i havent taken the act yet, taking it this year. umm... as far as class load goes, i take mostly honors. all my dual enrollments are honors us hostory a, honors us history b, (taking this year) alg 3, gifted & talented government and economics, honors english 12(been taking since 9th, but only 12 is dual). and umm... i took ap computer science last year....spanish 1 & 2. thats about it.</p>

<p>as far as schools, i live in a little town called Phenix City that is in AL and borders GA. We have a community college, but i really dont want to go there. There is a pretty nice 4 year school right across the bridge that i am heavily considering. It is very close(maybe 5 miles) and from what i read is very nice. It is called Columbus State University(Columbus</a> State University - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia). And it should save alot of money as i would live at home and have a very short commute. Thanks for the feedback you guys.</p>

<p>What is your SAT or ACT score?</p>

<p>i havent taken the act yet, taking it this year.</p>

<p>Sign up soon! Test sites fill up quickly. </p>

<p>Since you're low income, you might be able to get the fee waived.</p>

<p>yea, your right about that. im going to get on that very quickly.</p>

<p>i have a question though. im going to try my best to ask in a way that makes sense...</p>

<p>alright, grants are money from the government, and the rest that is left over the school tries to help compensate? so in this case if the grants alone were enough to cover what you need, your guaranteed that, correct?</p>

<p>so if i get a pell, and maybe an academic competitiveness(i dont know if i would qualify, or how hard of classes you wouldve havd to take) and that is enough, im good?</p>

<p>Not all grants are from the gov't. Some grants are from schools that have the money to give them (most schools don't). Keep in mind that most schools cannot meet need.</p>

<p>Fed grants aren't often enough to pay for college because the most you can get is about $5550 in Pell and possibly about another $750 for possible ACG. That usually isn't enough for college unless your tuition is very low and you commute from home.</p>

<p>On top of that, you can get about $5500 more in a student loan. </p>

<p>Since you plan on commuting to school, you may be fine if the tuition, fees, and books are rather low. How much are the costs at Columbus State?</p>

<p>Wait....I see that you're from Georgia. Won't you also get the HOPE scholarship? If so, that will also help.</p>

<p>CSU:</a> Future Students - Cost: Tuition and Fees</p>

<p>You might also qualify for HOPE, since you're from Georgia...
<a href="https://secure.gacollege411.org/Financial_Aid_Planning/HOPE_Program/Georgia_s_HOPE_Scholarship_Program_Overview.aspx%5B/url%5D"&gt;https://secure.gacollege411.org/Financial_Aid_Planning/HOPE_Program/Georgia_s_HOPE_Scholarship_Program_Overview.aspx&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/p>

<p>GSU also has merit scholarships.</p>

<p>Once you have your ACT scores (take the SAT, too), then you may have other options.</p>

<p>Actually it looks like the OP is from AL
i live in a little town called Phenix City that is in AL and borders GA


If so, no Hope Scholarship. The OP would be best served looking in-state (AL). Troy U in Phenix City would only cost $17K for a commuter.</p>

<p>well, im not entirely sure that i would qualify for the hope since i technically do live in al, but i have heard from reliable sources that some(few) neighboring counties do get in state tuition. which for csu is about... maybe 4000. and as someone mentioned, i wont be needing housing, meal plans, anything like that. im going to look into the hope thing, i have also heard that russell county qualifies for it, but havent actually looked it up for myself.</p>

<p>Oh pooh....</p>

<p>I was hoping you lived in GA. If you live in AL, you won't get HOPE, I don't think.</p>

<p>Find out FROM THE COLLEGE if you would get instate rates (don't rely on stories). </p>

<p>Once you have your ACT scores, you may have other options. Also take the SAT.</p>

<p>*Troy U in Phenix City would only cost $17K for a commuter. *</p>

<p>Why would it cost THAT MUCH for an instate commuter? It should cost less than $10k. Tuition is about $7k. Books another thousand. Fees another thousand or so.</p>

FEES 844
TOTAL $17532</p>

<p>But you're right, it includes cost of room and board at home.</p>

<p><a href="http://www.troy.edu/financialaid/documents/2009-10_coa_tu.pdf%5B/url%5D"&gt;http://www.troy.edu/financialaid/documents/2009-10_coa_tu.pdf&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/p>

<p>CSU:</a> Future Students - Cost: Tuition and Fees</p>

<p>at the bottom of there is a little asterisk deal. thank God.</p>

<p>PERSONAL 2376

<p>Ha Ha!!</p>

<p>This is just ridiculous padding for FA/loan purposes. No student living at home (for free) needs to spend nearly $10k on such things.</p>