Fact or fiction behind financial aid

Itâ??s that time of the year againâ?¦high school seniors applying to colleges all across the nation and trying to find ways on how to pay for it. With the rising costs of college tuition, many are turning to financial aid, meaning one wordâ?¦FAFSA.

"After January 1st of your senior year of high school, you can apply and file for the Free Application for Federal Student Aid or FAFSA. It's based one the most recent tax return information. You can list more than one school to receive the results. So go ahead, get it filled out and sent." Said Kathy Elsea Director of Financial Aid at Truman State University.

But what is fact and fiction when going through the college financial process. Here are some of the most common myths.

One myth is Students wonâ??t get any financial aid because their parents make too much money. That is the wrong approach.

"It's on a student individual to individual basis. A big part is the household income, but other factors like number of people in the household or number of kids in the household go to college can play a role in determining the amount of aid you are eligible for. " Elsea said. "You may not qualify for the federal grant money but your school can have other need base aid you can receive."

Another myth is when the right school offered a financial aid package, but it wasnâ??t enough. Students have to attend a different school. Not necessary.

"It's important to file the FAFSA early to the schools you are interested in. Make sure you do the whole process on time, so the admissions office can consider you for their scholarships while at the same time you can apply for any other private scholarships to help fill the need." Elsea said.

And hereâ??s the most popular myth, scholarships are just for the students with the best academic records, and not for the average student. Not so.

"Scholarships are awarded for lots of different things besides academics and athletics. Clubs and organizations of many affiliations such as religion or nationality can also give scholarships as well." Elsea said. "So there are a lot of different areas to cover to help find that money you need to pay for college."

The bottom line is when it comes to college and financial aid, when thereâ??s a will thereâ??s a way. You just have to do your homework.

For more information and to apply the FAFSA, click here: