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Google, Viacom partner with First Lady to increase FAFSA awareness


Thursday, February 13, 2014

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA, is the most important form that high school students who are preparing for college can complete. However, many college-bound students do not submit the FAFSA due to misconceptions about its complexities. Search giant Google and communications company Viacom hope to change that by bringing financial aid awareness and support to students and parents.

A helping hand
The two companies will work with the Get Schooled Foundation, a project recently launched as part of First Lady Michelle Obama's FAFSA Forward campaign. FAFSA Forward aims to demystify the college financial aid process and make it easier for more students to complete the FAFSA and receive the financial aid to which they are entitled.

"Google is going to partner with GetSchooled.com to use the Google Helpouts platform to connect students and families with experts who can give one-on-one FAFSA advice," Obama said during an event at T.C. Williams High School in Alexandria, Va., earlier this month. "So you don't have to do this alone.  Even parents who might be intimidated by this process, you don't have to do this alone.  There are resources – people who will be available to help you with – your child walk through this process."

Making a difference
Part of the Get Schooled initiative is to dispel the myths about applying for financial aid and to raise awareness of how much funding students can receive to help them achieve their academic ambitions.

"More than a million seniors likely eligible for student aid each year fail to complete the FAFSA, though the form is free and easy to fill out," said Marie Groark, executive director of the Get Schooled Foundation, as quoted by MSN Money. "By offering and directing parents and students toward FAFSA resources, we hope to increase completion rates, an important predictor of college enrollment and graduation."

Students who are preparing for college are urged to take advantage of all resources at their disposal to ensure that they complete their financial aid paperwork successfully and start their educational journey on the right foot.

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Google, Viacom partner with First Lady to increase FAFSA awareness
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