If we could only use one word to describe the financial aid process, it would be “confusing.”
Even under the best circumstances, filling out all those forms to see if you qualify for FASFA , can be totally frustrating. It’s even more frustrating if you can’t sit down with an advisor at your school to help. Luckily, there is a new way to get the information you need without having to wait.
You can now text COLLEGE to 335577 or COLEGIO to 335577 for Spanish, and instantly talk with an expert about your needs. The hotline has been set up by the Get Schooled Foundation, who is looking to connect with over 50 school organizations.
According to the Los Angeles Times, Marie Groark, the director of Get Schooled, came up with the idea after noticing a decline in students taking advantage of financial aid. She was also inspired by crisis hotlines that help young people with serious issues, like suicide. “Those two things were sticking in my mind alongside each other,” she said. “I thought, wait a minute, if we can put experts next to kids for deep emotional issues, and we’re having a problem connecting kids to experts at workshops, we can use text messaging to help solve the problem.”
The experts on the other line of the phone can help with questions from everyone, including undocumented citizens. You can ask something as simple as “where do I print this form?” to “what if I don’t have a social security number?”
During the last financial aid season, Groark found that over 7,000 text messages were exchanged between students in California and her team.
Pretty awesome, huh?