Governor Mike DeWine has declared October FAFSA Completion Month in Ohio, stressing the importance of having students complete their Free Application for Federal Student Aid to apply for funding for their postsecondary education.
“I believe every Ohio child should have the opportunity to achieve their dream,” Governor DeWine said. “Completing the FAFSA, pursuing other scholarships, and having a financial plan to pursue postsecondary education helps put those dreams in reach.”
FAFSA Completion Month is the first part of the Ohio Department of Higher Education’s “3 to Get Ready” campaign. The campaign, now in its second year, is designed to help high school students prepare for their postsecondary education by focusing on applying for financial aid, submitting college applications, and selecting where they’ll pursue their postsecondary education. The statewide initiative highlights three aspects of the preparatory process: 1) The Ohio FAFSA Completion Initiative; 2) Ohio College Application Month; and 3) College Signing Day.
“This campaign is designed to keep high school students engaged and thinking about their post-high school plans,” said Ohio Department of Higher Education Chancellor Randy Gardner. “Ohio offers numerous opportunities for them and it’s important that they complete their FAFSA form and have a good understanding of the resources available to them as they plan their future. A large number of Ohio students do not complete their FAFSA, which potentially leaves millions of dollars on the table each year that could be used to continue their education.”
The financial aid filing season will officially begin on Tuesday, October 1, with the launch of the 2020-2021 FAFSA at fafsa.gov. The Ohio FAFSA Completion Initiative focuses on encouraging high schools and institutions of higher education to host students and families who are in need of support during the FAFSA completion process.
“Each Child, Our Future, Ohio’s strategic plan for education, values enrollment and success in a two-year or four-year college program as one path to success for the state’s high school graduates,” said Paolo DeMaria, state superintendent of public instruction. “High school seniors considering college need to complete a FAFSA as a first step toward pursuing that post-high-school pathway. Students and families need to know that filling out the FAFSA often leads to the identification of money that can be used to pay for college.”
Ohio College Application Month also begins on October 1 and runs slightly longer than a month, concluding on November 15, 2019. The goal of the campaign is to assist high school seniors as they apply for their chosen postsecondary education option, including certificate, associate degree, and bachelor’s degree programs.
College Signing Day is a celebration of students’ plans for continuing their education or training after high school. Qualifying high school seniors will publicly “sign” with their colleges of choice and will be celebrated by their peers, building staff, and families. College Signing Day is typically held during the spring of the school year.
High schools, institutions of higher education, and community partners that want to participate in the campaign can register at www.ohiohighered.org/3toGetReady. Once registered, participants may request materials to support their local events, including stickers (for students), buttons (for staff), and posters (to display). Participants who support all three parts of the initiative will receive a special designation from the state of Ohio.
About the Ohio Department of Higher Education
The Ohio Department of Higher Education is a Cabinet-level agency for the Governor of the State of Ohio that oversees higher education for the state. The agency’s main responsibilities include authorizing and approving new degree programs, managing state-funded financial aid programs and developing and advocating policies to maximize higher education’s contributions to the state and its citizens.
Ohio Department of Higher Education