We are here to support your program.

EVENT: FAFSA Completion - 12.2

Event Grade 12 - How Will I Pay for College?

This event will provide pairs with an opportunity to either complete their FAFSA or work together to assess what the mentee needs to do in order to complete the FAFSA.

Event Notes: It is critical that staff members decide how they intend to approach FAFSA completion at this event. If the goal is to have mentees physically complete the FAFSA at the event, staff should consider doing the following: extending an invitation to parents to join and participate in the event, either providing mentees with computers or hosting the event in a space where computers are available, and speaking with the school on the role mentors can play and their proximity to mentees' personal data.

Event Overview

Objectives:

Pairs will:

  • Option 1
    • Work together to complete as many sections of the FAFSA that time allows.
    • Identify the documents and forms needed to complete the FAFSA.
    • Identify the people and resources needed in order to acquire that information.
  • Option 2
    • Work together to complete the sections of the FAFSA that do not require additional documentation.
    • Identify the documents and forms needed to complete the FAFSA.
    • Identify the people and resources needed in order to acquire that information.

Guiding Questions:

  • What is the FAFSA? Why is completing the FAFSA important?
  • What does completing the FAFSA give me access to?

Lesson Resources:

Logistics: 

Entry Point

Welcome and Opening (20 minutes)

Chunk One: Welcome

  • Staff formally welcomes all participants. 
  • Staff thanks everyone for showing up on time (it'll be important to emphasize punctuality as part of event success).

Chunk Two: Opening Activity 

  • Staff will place 2-3 image sheets at each table.
  • At each table, pairs will take turns responding to a question and selecting the image that best represents their answer.
  • Questions can include (can be read aloud by staff or printed on a separate sheet of paper):
    • Looking ahead, how do you feel about the rest of the school year?
    • Looking back, how do you feel 2015 went for you?
    • How do you feel about the college process or supporting your mentee through the college process?
    • How do you feel about the strength of your relationship?

DISH: Connecting Over Dinner (30 minutes)

Chunk One: Food Ritual

  • Staff will instruct pairs on how they will get food and return to their seats
  • It is important that staff set strong rituals for how participants get food to maximize efficiency

Chunk Two: Conversation Starter Deck

  • Staff ensures DISH conversation starter card decks are on the tables. When pairs return to their tables with food, they draw cards and discuss the content on the cards. The cards are intended to be used if pairs do not already have a conversation to engage in.
  • For full list of conversation starters, check out this article on Conversation Starters.

Chunk Three: Seconds and Clean Up

  • Staff will signal that seconds are available (if applicable)
  • Staff will give pairs 5 minute warning to clean up and throw away trash

Pair Keystone Option 1 (45 minutes)

Purpose:

This activity is designed to provide pairs with an opportunity to work on completing the FAFSA together. The recommendation is to provide pairs with a laptop or desktop computer if possible, so progress can be captured on the actual application in real time. If computers are unavailable, pairs will have to use the paper supplement to identify and write in all the necessary information for each section. Mentees will then have to input that data into the online version of the FAFSA.

Steps:

Chunk One: Introduction to the FAFSA

  • Refresher
    • What is the FAFSA?
    • What will completing the FAFSA provide me access to?
  • Distribute Do You Need Money for College 1-pager
  • Focus on completing the FAFSA accurately and on time
    • Almost $3 billion in unclaimed free financial aid due to students not submitting or submitting incomplete FAFSAs

Chunk Two: Instructions (with tech)

  • Show the How to Fill Out the FAFSA video
  • Model FAFSA demo site using provided login credentials
  • Assist pairs as they login to FAFSA website

Chunk Two: Instructions (without tech)

  • Distribute FAFSA on the Web document to each pair
  • Distribute any other supplemental resources to each pair. 
  • Highlight the sections that pairs should be working on together during event.

Chunk Three: Independent Work Time for Pairs

  • During this time, pairs should be working together to complete as much of the FAFSA application as they can. Mentors should ensure that mentee information is accurate. 
  • If mentees do not have the information they need to fill out a specific section, mentors should help them figure out where they need to go or who they need to talk to acquire that information.
  • If mentees have already begun working on the FAFSA prior to event, pairs should confirm the accuracy of the data already entered.

Pair Keystone Option 2 (45 minutes)

Purpose:

This activity is designed to provide pairs with an opportunity to prepare the mentee for completing their FAFSA on their own. Using the FAFSA on the Web worksheet, pairs will complete the student sections of the document, discuss where to acquire specific pieces of information if they're not sure, and come up with a plan to ensure mentees are in fact completing the application on time.

Steps:

Chunk One: Introduction to the FAFSA

  • Refresher
    • What is the FAFSA?
    • What will completing the FAFSA provide me access to?
  • Distribute Do You Need Money for College 1-pager
  • Focus on completing the FAFSA accurately and on time
    • Almost $3 billion in unclaimed free financial aid due to students not submitting or submitting incomplete FAFSA's

Chunk Two: Instructions 

  • Distribute FAFSA checklist.
  • Distribute FAFSA on the Web document to each pair
  • Distribute any other supplemental resources to each pair. 
  • Highlight the sections that pairs should be working on together during event.

Chunk Three: Independent Work Time for Pairs

  • During this time, pairs should be working together to complete the sections of the FAFSA they can without additional documentation and identify which documents and forms they need. 
  • If mentees have already begun working on the FAFSA prior to event, pairs should confirm the accuracy of the data already entered.

Exit Ramp (10 minutes)

Debrief and Mentee Exit

  • Pairs should do the following to wrap up this activity:
    • Clearly identify the deadline for completion they are working toward
    • Specify what 2-3 action steps need to take place and when they need to happen
    • Determine how the pair plans to communicate and keep each other accountable for completing the FAFSA on time
‚Äč

Mentor Huddle (15 minutes)

Announcements

  • Staff will thank mentors for participating in the event.
  • Staff will make any relevant announcements and preview any upcoming milestones and curriculum topics.

Temperature Check

  • Staff will ask mentors the following questions to gauge their confidence in supporting their mentee through this process.
  • Staff can use a "Fist to Five" to solicit mentor responses.
  • Questions are:
    • How confident are you in your basic understanding of the FAFSA and the process to complete it?
    • How confident are you in your ability to support your mentee through the FAFSA completion process?

Closing Ritual

  • Staff should facilitate a closing ritual for mentors to build community and to leave on a high note.