Dec 02, 2021
FAFSA for BFA Musical Theatre
Let’s talk about the elephant in the room… Financial Aid
Luanne Lee is a College Planning Coach with about 15 years of experience in the field. She started out as a financial planner, but realized she could help families a lot more by showing them how to save on cost of education. And boy does she!
So, the FAFSA. What is it? Luanne clears this up by explaining that the FAFSA, or Free Application for Federal Student Aid, is simply an application that can be found at www.studentaid.gov. It is not an actual grant or loan application. This application is in place to help the federal government see where you fall on the poverty line scale, which can help determine if you qualify for federal school loans. Yes, this applies to Acting students, Musical Theatre students. All BFA theatre students.
Now, I know what you’re thinking. “But what if I know I’m not near that poverty line, what’s the point in filling this out?” Well, Luanne answers that as well. “Why not?” It certainly couldn’t hurt, and if we look back at this past year and a half with the pandemic, we know things can change in an instant. Why not be prepared? And there’s always the possibility of qualifying for some of that federal money. It would be a huge bummer to miss out on that $5,000 because you didn’t want to take the time to fill out the application, right? If you do fall below that poverty line, you could qualify for the free Federal Pell Grant up to $6,495. Through the CARES Act, schools, even theatre colleges, received government funding as well… why not use it? Not to mention, some schools may require a FAFSA to be filled out to apply for financial aid through them.
So, what do you need to apply for the FAFSA and set up your FSA ID? You’ll need paystubs/asset balances, your 2020 tax return… yes, I did say your 2020 tax return, social security card/number, investment account information, mortgage statements/investment real estate information, and 529 plans which are considered parent assets not student assets. Be sure you pull all this information for you and your student! You will both need to create FSA ID’s.
With all that said- keep in mind that the priority date for financial aid from schools differs tremendously from the FASFA date. FAFSA goes out about two years, while schools will be within a few months. Check the schools financial aid information for their specified date.
You can also JOIN THE CAP PARENT SUPPORT GROUP to see this video and receive even more helpful information for this amazing journey you and your student are on leading up to their college auditions, and BFA programs they are working hard to take part in.