Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

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October 4, 2022

FAFSA delays information release to universities, leaving questions about timeline of financial aid offers

Teagan Jensen

Due to changes to the new Free Application for Federal Student Aid application, colleges will not receive data from applicants’ forms until the first half of March, according to the U.S. Department of Education as of Jan. 30. This announcement is leaving many UT students uncertain of their financial aid offers.

56% of UT students receive some sort of financial aid, according to UT admissions, so this delay could impact a large portion of the student body. However, UT has yet to confirm how the delay will impact financial aid package release dates.  

“The University is currently reviewing how the delay may impact enrolled and admitted students looking to commit before the May 1 deadline,” University spokesperson Kathleen Harrison said. 

Geology junior Zoe Clark, who receives the Hazlewood Exemption for tuition assistance and University financial aid, is just one of many students impacted by the potential setback. 

“Financial aid is the only reason I can come here,” said Clark. “It essentially paid for my housing for the three years I’ve been here, and it will next year too.”

For students who rely primarily on financial aid for college, potential changes can be daunting.

“It’s definitely anxiety-inducing to have to navigate such big things when you’re in college, because it’s a lot of money on the line,” Clark said. “If the money is super delayed, what does that mean for (my) apartment lease? You never know how they’re gonna handle that.”

While students wait for more information from UT about the delay, Harrison said students are encouraged to reach out to Texas One Stop or attend upcoming FAFSA Workshops to navigate FAFSA form changes. 

Additionally, Clark said campus organizations such as University Leadership Network and UT for Me, which she is a part of, offer resources for students in similar situations, but they can only do so much with limited knowledge. 

“I think they’re trying really hard to get it figured out, but I don’t think there’s a lot of information for them to use,” Clark said.

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