What is Financial Aid?
Financial Aid is any grant, scholarship, loan, or paid employment offered to help a student meet college expenses. Financial aid is usually provided by various sources such as federal and state agencies, colleges, high schools, foundations, and corporations. The amount of financial aid a student receives is determined by federal, state and institutional guidelines.
Grants are funds that are not repaid; loans must be repaid. Student loan interest rates and repayment terms vary by program. Employment is aid based on an hourly rate for work performed.
How to Apply
To determine eligibility for Financial Aid, you must apply each year. The application process may vary somewhat from college to college, so you are encouraged to contact each campus for applications and deadline information. Parents/Guardians can start filling out the FAFSA on October 1st of their child's senior year of high school. The following forms should be submitted each year:
FAFSA - Free Application for Federal Student Aid
This application produces a Student Aid Report (SAR). The SAR indicates your eligibility for grants, loans, Work-Study, and private loans. It may also be used to determine your eligibility for institutional scholarships. File your FAFSA online here..
New York State residents who submit a FAFSA for attendance at a college in New York State will be sent an Express Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) Application (ETA) from the New York State High Education Services Corporation (HESC). It will include pre-printed information taken from your FAFSA. Complete the form, sign it, and submit it to HESC. You will then be sent a TAP Award Certificate.
Visit HESC here.
Some colleges require that you also complete the CSS/Financial Aid Profile. Check here or check with your prospective colleges to find out if you should complete it.
Financial Aid Night
On Monday, September 14, 2020, the OPHS Guidance Department will conduct a Financial Aid Night for Parents of Seniors. Financial Aid Night for Parents of Juniors will be held on Thursday, May 6, 2021. A representative from a local college financial aid office will be on hand to help parents learn how to complete the FAFSA form and to answer any questions pertaining to the financial aid process. The programs begin at 6:30 PM in the HS Auditorium.