The Department of Education (Ed) is phasing out the P.I.N. (personal identification number) for the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid), which is used to access your FAFSA information.
Ed is replacing it with username/password setup in April of 2015. This is a major change in how students will be able to access their FAFSA...almost as big as the changeover form the paper FAFSA to FAFSA on the Web. Ed has stated that they are switching systems in order to provide more security for users.
The PIN will be used exclusively from now until March. 2015. This phase-out of PIN to Username/password for FAFSA applies to new (1st time filing out FAFSA in 2015) AND current.returning students. So students who are currently in college, and will renew their FAFSA next year, will do so in the same way as they have before.
Students who will be filling out the FAFSA for the first time (such as current high school seniors who will enter college in August or September of 2015) will also use the PIN login system, but have to change over to the system.
Current high school juniors and others who will fill out the FAFSA after August 2015 (in most cases, starting January 1, 2016) will not use the PIN system at all, but rather the new username/password system.
This new login system will not only affect your FAFSA login, but also other information regarding federal student aid, such as the NLDS (National Student Loan Data System) system for Student Loans. Note that this will not affect access to information on private scholarships, or private loans, which are not run by the federal government. Loans through Sallie Mae, Discover and other organizations will have their own login information.
If you are NOT currently a student, but have used the PIN for using FAFSA on the Web in the past, it is also recommended that you create a username and password as well, as you may still need to access information, such as on student loans.
More details on this transition are expected by February 2015.
Other information from their recent announcement included a change on parental information - FAFSA will focus on parents relationship with children. So it doesn’t matter if parents are married or not, same sex couple or not; all of this information will be used for FAFSA.
For more information on these and other changes, visit the Department of Education website for National Training for Counselors and Mentors (NT4CM) at www.Financialaidtoolkit.ed.gov/nt4cm
NT4CM is a comprehensive training program that delivers up-to-date information regarding federal and state student aid programs, scholarship searches, and financial aid fraud. Participants also learn how to access free resources such as fact sheets, brochures, and PowerPoint presentations that can be used in outreach to students. After the training, participants will receive ongoing information and support.
Do-Gooder Consulting provides an affordable year-long consulting service that includes 3 seminars (The Financial Aid Process – for families; The College Going Process – for youth workers; FAFSA workshop – for families), as well as coordinating professional help to your soon-to-be college students with a FAFSA completion session (recommended during the 1st week of January).
Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at 872-222-8008 for details on the free and paid services. We look forward to hearing from you. Find out more about us at www.do-gooder.us