Help Students Experiencing Homelessness Apply for College Financial Aid

A young woman writes on a chalkboard.
Youth who meet the McKinney-Vento Act definition of homeless can typically apply for federal financial aid as independent students. This means they do not need to include their parents’ income information and can sign their own paperwork.

It’s time for homeless youth who have their sights set on higher education this fall to fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA. The Department of Education will accept 2016-2017 applications through June 30, 2017, but many state, college, and private aid programs also rely on FAFSA information to make their award decisions. Some of these programs disburse funds on a first-come, first-served basis and/or abide by an earlier deadline.

We know the financial aid process can be confusing for homeless young people and the service providers guiding them through the process. Flip through the slideshow to catch up on five facts and resources from the National Association for the Education of Homeless Children and Youth, or NAEHCY, that can help youth workers point students in the right direction.

More on Financial Aid for Homeless Youth

Ask NCFY: Helping Unaccompanied Youth Apply for Financial Aid

For Youth Experiencing Homelessness, A New Toolkit Puts College Within Reach

A Website That Helps You Help Young People Navigate Federal Student Aid

Read the Department of Education's Letter Clarifying Financial Aid Options for Unaccompanied Homeless Youth

Colleges Support Homeless Students by Designating One Point of Contact

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