The beginning of fall doesn’t just mean pumpkin-spiced everything and cooler weather, it also means it’s time to renew your FAFSA as a returning student. All returning students must fill out the FAFSA every year to qualify for financial aid in the next academic year. Luckily, FAFSA saves all of the information from the previous year and you can choose to have most of the information pre-filled. 

This year, the FAFSA application opens today, October 1, 2021 for the 2022-23 academic year. Emory’s deadline to submit the FAFSA is February 16, 2022. If you’re thinking about when is the best time to get started on the FAFSA, the answer is as soon as possible! Although you have a 4-month deadline, here are 5 reasons it is recommended to apply early.

Get Your Student Aid Report Faster

Applying closer to the October 1 deadline means your Student Aid Report will arrive sooner. This gives you a better idea of where you stand for aid awards. Getting your report sooner also allows for more time to fix any errors on the report such as additional actions that may be required or missing signatures.

You Can Start the Appeal Process as Early as Possible

If you have a special circumstance that you believe is not reflected in your aid package you can submit an appeal. Getting your FAFSA in on time means you will receive your aid on the aid release date next summer. This will allow maximum time to work on the appeal process.

Get a Head Start on Alternative Aid 

It is possible that the aid you receive will not cover the complete cost of attending Emory including room and board, textbooks, and transportation. Applying early gives you a head start into looking for alternative financing options such as outside scholarships, private loans, or finding a job. Having more time to to research different options and come up with a plan will take the weight off of your shoulders!

Financial Aid Can be Limited

While Emory meets 100% of demonstrated need for all students, some schools have limited aid that they can disperse every year. If you are applying to Graduate or Professional schools, it is extremely important to apply for aid as early as possible to get the maximum amount of aid possible and to qualify for grants.

You Can Focus on Other Important Things!

College is stressful. The earlier you complete your FAFSA the earlier you can focus on your other priorities such as classes and extracurriculars.

If you are not completely confident in filling out the form yet, no worries! Federal Student Aid will be hosting a Financial Aid Bootcamp Webinar from October 19th – 21st.  You can register for their virtual webinars which will feature a line-by-line demonstration of the 2022-23 FAFSA form and ask any questions you may have.

Look for upcoming FAFSA workshops with the Office of Financial Aid on both the Atlanta and Oxford campuses coming soon!

Are you ready to start the FAFSA? Click here to access the login page for the FSA application. 

Good luck!

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