Spacer Spacer          Spacer Spacer
Spacer Spacer Spacer
Spacer   Spacer
Spacer Spacer Spacer

Links to Helpful FAQ's
Posted by Colleges and Universities


Colorado College

Colorado School of Mines

CU Boulder


Mesa State

University of Chicago

University of Denver



































































Our Newsletters
...Read Them>


College Aid Specialists Forms
...Get Them >

Our Online Document Pages
...Read More >

Western Undergraduate Exchange
...Go To

Getting Started with College Aid Specialists...Begin Now! 

| Home Page | About Us | News and Events | Services | Contact Us | FAQs


Most of our questions fall into the following 3 categories



Q: How many schools should I apply to?

A: College Aid Specialists recommends that a student select between 6-8 colleges to apply to.  Of the colleges, include two "safety schools" that you know will accept your child and at a rate you can afford, and one to two "reach" schools.  Always try to pick schools where your child lies in the top 25% of the incoming freshman class.


Q: When should I start applying to colleges?

A: This can vary depending upon the college you wish to attend.  If you desire to go to a competitive, private college or university, you should start looking at brochures, web sites, and applications in September of your senior year.  This means that October is when you start filling out the applications, check and re-check for mistakes and send them off as early as possible.


Q: I am applying to private colleges that require essays.  Can College Aid Specialists help in the review of our essays?

A:When you become a full service client, we provide assistance in different areas.  One of those areas is to have your essays reviewed and critiqued by the very best, Chuck Hughes, former senior admissions officer, Harvard College.  This will be like getting your paper graded before you turn it in so that you can make changes in advance.


Q: How do I prepare for a college interview?

A: The interview is the chance for you, the student, to market yourself and to show off your strengths and maybe determine your admission fate.  When you are a full service client of College Aid Specialists, you will receive a DVD/CD set on how to master your interviewing skills.  This set is Strategic Advice from Admissions Officers and Career Counselors from Harvard, Brown, Bucknell, that will give you the coaching tips and insights to give you the edge.




Q: What is a "EFC"?

A: EFC is the Expected Family Contribution.  It can come in 2 forms.  The Federal EFC is the amount that the government determines you, as a family, should pay for your child's education.  This is determined by filling out a "FAFSA".  The Institutional EFC is the amount that Private Colleges & Universities think you should pay for your child's education.  Private schools tend to have a more optimistic view of your ability to pay than the government (although the government can have some pretty strange ideas too).  The higher your EFC, the bigger your bill.


Q: When is a Family's Base Financial Year?

A: For the freshman year of college, the fall of a student's Junior year in high school is the family's base financial year.  It is in this year, your assets, Income, and in some cases, your homes value, are used to calculate your EFC.


Q: How many times do we apply for aid?

A: Colleges understand that your financial situation this year could be different then your financial situation next year.  A family's situation could change for the better or for the worse, so they will want to check your financial situation at the start of every school year, utilizing the FAFSA for Public Colleges & Universities and FAFSA and the CSS Profile for Private Colleges & Universities and sometimes schools may have their own forms.


Q: If I am interested in getting any student loans do I have to fill out the FAFSA?

A: Yes!  Make sure your FAFSA, CSS PROFILE, and any institutional financial aid forms are accurate, timely and most importantly , consistent with one another.  Regardless of your income or assets you must complete the FAFSA, CSS PROFILE and any other required institutional forms to be eligible for free college scholarships and low interest student loans.

Q: When should the forms be completed?

A: The deadlines can come so fast.  For Private Colleges and Universities that require the CSS PROFILE, this deadline can come as early as November of the students senior year, depending upon the school.  The earliest the FAFSA can be done is January 1st.  Remember it is always good to have these forms completed as early as possible.


Western Undergraduate Exchange Program


Q: What is the WUE program?

A: WUE is the Western Undergraduate Exchange, this is a program of the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education.  Through WUE, students that reside in western states may enroll in many two year and four year college programs at a reduced tuition level.  This level is 150 percent of the institution's regular resident tuition.


Q: Are all Colleges & Universities in the west included?

A: No:  To see what schools are included, you may click on our link for WUE under resources to the left.


Q: What states participate in the WUE?

A: Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming.


Back to top

Spacer Spacer Spacer
Spacer Spacer   Spacer Spacer