Earlier this year, I had the most amazing opportunity – to be part of a dynamic and creative team of people who are making it easier for high-school students and adult learners to achieve their dreams of going to college. I work at the Department of Education’s office of Federal Student Aid (FSA) which provides over $150 billion in grants, loans and work-study funds every year to individuals going to college and career schools. This summer, we launched a new website along with a Facebook page, a Twitter account and, a YouTube channel. Each of these new resources are designed to make it easier for students and parents to understand and navigate the financial aid process.
What makes it exciting for me is that I know these new resources will help Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders like me achieve their dreams for higher education. I, along with many of my family members and friends, was able to go to college and graduate school because we had access to financial aid. Below is an overview of all of FSA’s new resources that you can now take advantage of. I hope you take the time to go through the resources and that they help you achieve your academic dreams.
If you’re a student thinking about college or career school or a borrower already in repayment, the U.S. Department of Education’s office of Federal Student Aid has launched some exciting new tools to help you through the financial aid process.
StudentAid.gov is a new website that provides straightforward and easy-to-understand information about planning and paying for college. The site combines content and interactive tools from several ED websites.
StudentAid.gov offers more than just information in an easy-to-read format; it also features videos and infographics to help answer the most frequently asked questions about financial aid.
As a mobile-optimized website, StudentAid.gov is fully accessible on tablets and smartphones. StudentAid.gov’s new look was tested with students, parents and borrowers, and we will continue to make improvements and updates based on your feedback.
Some New Features:
Income-Based Repayment Calculator: If your student loan debt is high but your income is modest, you may qualify for the Income-Based Repayment Plan (IBR). To find out whether you might be eligible to repay your loan under IBR, use our new IBR calculator.
Videos: We’ve developed videos to help make the financial aid process easier to understand. We’ll continue to roll out new videos and update our playlists on the Federal Student Aid YouTube channel.
Vandna Wendy Bhagat is the Director of Awareness and Outreach for the Office of Federal Student Aid at the U.S. Department of Education.