PHEAA reminds students deadline nears

HARRISBURG — The Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency is reminding students and families of the May 1 filing deadline for 2017-18 Pennsylvania State Grant applications.

This deadline applies to all renewal and first-time applicants who plan to enroll in colleges, universities or a college transfer program at two-year public or private colleges (except community colleges and designated Pennsylvania Open Admission institutions).

To apply for a Pennsylvania State Grant, applicants must first complete the 2017-18 Free Application for Federal Student Aid. Applicants can access the FAFSA online at PHEAA.org/FAFSA or at fafsa.gov.

Additionally, first-time applicants must submit a completed Pennsylvania State Grant Form.

First-time applicants who submit the FAFSA online will be automatically redirected to the SGF by following onscreen prompts on the FAFSA confirmation page.

Those who have already submitted their FAFSA but have not completed the SGF will receive an email directing them to PHEAA’s account access site for completion. Applications are free to submit.

First-time state grant applicants who plan to enroll in a community college, business, trade or technical school, hospital school of nursing, designated Pennsylvania Open Admission institution or non-transferable two-year degree program have until Aug. 1 to complete applications.

While the Internal Revenue Service and U.S. Department of Education recently announced that the Data Retrieval Tool on fafsa.gov is expected to be unavailable for the remainder of the 2017-18 financial aid application season, applicants should still complete the FAFSA before the May 1 deadline.

However, applicants must now manually enter their 2015 tax information from the tax return filed in 2016 (not their 2016 tax information that is filed in 2017).

Applicants without immediate access to accurate income data can provide estimated information and then make updates after filing by logging into their account on the FAFSA homepage and clicking “Make FAFSA Corrections.”

Students and families with questions about the FAFSA or the State Grant Program can call (800) 692-7392 for assistance.