Cash for College aims to help students

By Vanessa Ramos

  East Los Angeles College hosted Cash for College workshops that gave instructions on how to complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) forms and AB540 students helped complete the California Dream Act Application (CADAA) forms Saturday. 

Along with CADAA filing, the deadline is March 2 for any Cal Grant program consideration.    Deadlines for the 2020-2021 school year FAFSA is March 2,  and additional community college Cal Grants deadlines are Sept. 2.  

Filings are every year for FAFSA and CADAA. For AB540 filings are not every year but if non-resident students leave and return, the student will need to refile. 

Students in financial need can apply. Once applied, the state can determine/ eligibility for grants, work-study hours, or loans qualifications if estimated family contribution calculations are above determined assistance. 

By the status of their residency students’ grants will vary from federal aid assistance and state aid assistance. 

The state and school selected for aid for the academic year will determine the aid packet. Students in community college must obtain a GPA of 2.0 or above and be enrolled at least half-time. 

 Depending on the financial calculations on the Expected Family Contribution (EFC) students who apply under a FAFSA and CADAA can receive Cal Grants A,B, or C awards for support in their educational path. 

Cal Grant A is for university grants, Cal Grant B is for four-year transfer program grants, and Cal Grant C is for two-year occupational or technical training programs. 

  Linda Yanez, a financial aid technician, gave emphasis on Cal Grant B, which can award students with no dependents up to $1,672 and for students with dependent(SWD) up to $6,024. Cal Grant C awards SWD up to  $4,024 this coming year. 

 Lindy Fong, director of the financial aid office, said that if students are non-residents, they can be eligible for state aid or a grant called California College Promise Grant (CCPG) which can waives tuition fees per-unit.  

  Students, parents or spouses will need to use income tax returns from 2018 for both FAFSA and CADAA filing. 

With the IRS Data Retrieval Tool students who apply for FAFSA, who have filed for their 2018 tax return with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), can find a more accurate way to transfer information. 

  Students fling under FAFSA that have not filed for 2019, can give an estimated amount of the year, then once filed, can provide the correct amount. 

Students who are completing the CADAA form and have not filed for 2019, should give an estimate as well. If students are experiencing financial instability, complete both forms to the furthest extent and submit them. 

Julie Benavides, Vice president of student services , invited students of AB540 and DACA students to visit the Dream Resource Center if any questions arise about their status. 

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