"College Goal Sunday" Helps Students Plan And Pay For College

Ruth Hassell-Thompson

January 16, 2008

Calling it "a first step towards achieving a lifetime of success," State Senator Ruth Hassell-Thompson (D-Bronx/Westchester) today lauded a free, one-day program designed to help high school seniors and their families complete and file federal aid applications electronically.

College Goal Sunday, a national initiative hosted locally by the New York State Financial Aid Administrator’s Association (NYSFAAA) and the New York State Higher Education Services Corp. (HESC), has assisted thousands of families with access to higher education opportunities.

"Students looking for federal and state aid next school year should not wait until the last minute to file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid," said Senator Hassell-Thompson, noting that the FAFSA is a must for students seeking financial aid, such as grants, scholarships or loans.

This year, NYSFAAA and HESC have once again teamed up to host College Goal Sunday at numerous locations throughout the state, including:

• Lehman High School (Bronx) on Sunday, February 10 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

• Lincoln High School (Yonkers) on Sunday, February 10 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

"Filling out financial aid paperwork can be a daunting process, but this online application process cuts through the paper jungle," Senator Hassell-Thompson said. "Enrolling in college is scary enough. Don’t let the FAFSA be another barrier."

The Bronx lawmaker encouraged interested students and their families to visit www.collegegoalsundayny.com to prepare for College Goal Sunday. The website includes a step-by-step checklist to help families gather the information needed, including how to apply for an electronic personal identification number (PIN), a unique identifier assigned by the US Department of Education.

"Complicated forms like these can mean headaches for students and parents alike," Senator Hassell-Thompson concluded. "This event is an opportunity for any high school student thinking about higher education and worrying about how to pay for it."