Department of Higher Education and Workforce Development
October 02, 2020FAFSA Frenzy events help Missouri students file the 2021-22 Free Application for Federal Student Aid
Missouri students and families can receive free help completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) at FAFSA Frenzy events being held across the state. Public and private FAFSA Frenzy events will be held Oct. 1, 2020, through Jan. 31, 2021.
Students should submit a FAFSA every year they plan to attend college. It is the primary form used to determine eligibility for most types of federal and state financial aid, including grants, scholarships, loans, and work-study, as well as financial assistance offered by colleges and universities. It is often the first step students must take to secure financial aid for college.
Financial aid professionals, high school counselors, and other volunteers provide free assistance and answer questions during FAFSA Frenzy events. This year, many events will be held virtually, or with extra measures in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
“FAFSA Frenzy supports students and families in overcoming the barriers associated with applying for student aid,” said Zora Mulligan, commissioner of higher education. “With free assistance through these events, students complete an important part of the college-planning process so they can make more informed decisions about where they want to attend.”
Students can receive help at any public FAFSA Frenzy event, no matter where they live, go to school, or plan to attend college. The public events – held at high schools, college campuses and community facilities – are open to all high school seniors, current college students, and adults interested in attending college.
The 2021-22 FAFSA became available Oct. 1, 2020. Missouri students attending a FAFSA Frenzy event can apply online for one of twenty $500 Journey to College Book Scholarships through Scholarship Central at https://stlouisgraduates.academicworks.com/opportunities/3656.
A list of public FAFSA Frenzy sites can be viewed at journeytocollege.mo.gov/pay/file-a-fafsa/fafsa-frenzy/public-fafsa-frenzy-events. So far more than 50 Missouri high schools are also hosting private events to assist their students.
When attending an event, FAFSA Frenzy participants should bring:
- 2019 W-2 forms
- Copies of their 2019 tax forms
- Social Security number
- Student and parent FSA IDs (Students and parents should apply for separate FSA ID usernames and passwords at studentaid.gov/fsa-id/create-account/ before attending a FAFSA Frenzy event.)
FAFSA Frenzy is sponsored annually by the Missouri Department of Higher Education & Workforce Development (MDHEWD), in partnership with the Missouri Association of Student Financial Aid Personnel, the Missouri Higher Education Loan Authority and the National College Attainment Network.
Volunteers have assisted more than 25,000 Missouri students since FAFSA completion events began in 2004. Anyone with FAFSA knowledge that is interested in assisting at a FAFSA Frenzy event this year should visit dhewd.mo.gov/ppc/fafsafrenzy.php to complete a volunteer form. Schools and organizations can still sign up to host an event as well, by visiting https://dhewd.mo.gov/ppc/journeytocollegeprograms.php.
This year, MDHEWD launched the Show-Me FAFSA Challenge, a statewide FAFSA completion competition aimed at increasing FAFSA filing rates for high school seniors. Public high schools throughout the state will compete with each other for scholarship prizes, which will be awarded to one student at each of the winning schools. Schools will be sorted into three groups based on school size. Each group will compete for prizes in four categories, including highest completion rate and most improved completion rate. The Missouri Scholarship & Loan Foundation and the Missouri College Access Network are sponsoring the scholarship prizes. For more information about the Show-Me FAFSA Challenge, visit https://dhewd.mo.gov/ppc/fafsachallenge.php.
For more information about the FAFSA Frenzy program, visit journeytocollege.mo.gov/fafsa-frenzy.
About the Missouri Department of Higher Education & Workforce Development: The department works to empower Missourians with the skills and education needed for success. More information about MDHEWD can be found at https://dhewd.mo.gov or on Facebook and Twitter @MoDHEWD.