Frequently Asked Questions
About Financial Aid

photo of a confused looking studentFinancing your college education can be challenging and you probably have questions about the financial aid process. You’re not alone. Here are some frequently asked questions.

How do I apply for financial aid?
The procedure for applying for financial aid is a process separate from applying for KZCF scholarships, and is done via the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) website. The FAFSA is a tool created by the federal government to assess student financial need. This application opens on October 1 of each year, and we encourage you to complete it as soon as possible. The information from the FAFSA results will be used not only for KZCF scholarships, but will also be provided to the colleges you apply to (at your direction), as well as other entities whom you may request tuition assistance from. The FAFSA is free to fill out, and requires information from your parent(s)’ last tax return (or your last tax return, if you are an independent student). Please note that KZCF is not affiliated with the FAFSA, and cannot help you with issues or problems related to the FAFSA; if you’re having difficulty or have questions, please utilize the contact information on the FAFSA website for assistance.

How do I complete and file the FAFSA?

You must file the FAFSA online at However, before filling out the FAFSA, you and one parent must apply for a Federal Student Aid ID number at It is also recommended that you complete the FAFSA on the Web Worksheet, an optional tool that can be downloaded from Completing this worksheet will help you make sure you have all the information you need and make filling out your FAFSA easier. 

What if I don’t have access to the Internet? Is there another method of filing the FAFSA?

While the U.S. Department of Education strongly encourages filing the FAFSA online—due to a lower error rate and faster processing time—a paper version is available by calling 1.800.433.3243. You may request up to three forms. In addition, a PDF version of the FAFSA will be available at From there you can access the PDF, complete the form by computer or hand, and mail it to the address provided for processing. Whether you choose to submit your FAFSA online or by mail, it should be received at the federal processing center by the State of Michigan’s March 1 deadline.

When do I file the FAFSA?

The FAFSA application opens October 1, so you should file the FAFSA as soon as possible after October 1 of your senior year or the year before the calendar year in which you plan to enroll in a college, university or other school. For example, if you plan to enroll in college in 2019, you should file the FAFSA in October 2018; if you plan to enroll in college in 2019, you should file the FAFSA in October 2018. The State of Michigan priority filing date for the FAFSA for high school seniors and college undergraduates is March 1 in order to be eligible for state aid. You can apply for financial aid after March 1, but you may not be considered for state and federal financial aid programs. Colleges and universities may have even earlier deadlines, so be sure to check with the schools to which you have applied for admission.

Who completes the FAFSA?

The student applicant and the parent(s) fill out the FAFSA.

What if my parents are divorced, separated or married to other people?

If your parents are divorced or separated, you and the parent you live with the majority of the time fill out the FAFSA. If the parent you live with is married to someone else, his or her spouse’s information also must be included on the FAFSA. 

What should I do after completing my forms?

When you complete the FAFSA online, you will be instructed as to what pages to print. If you file by mail, keep copies for your files. Get a certificate of mailing from the post office if you mail your financial aid application form. This certificate verifies the mailing date and destination of your form. Only use first class mail. Do not send your forms by certified or express mail. It will actually slow down the processing of your forms. 

What happens at the federal processing center?
The federal processing center takes the information you provide on the FAFSA and uses it to calculate how much you and your parents will be expected to pay toward college expenses. The federal processor also calculates your eligibility for the Federal Pell Grant. The federal processing center will send the results and data from your application to all the colleges and universities you list on your FAFSA. The federal processor will forward you a Student Aid Report (SAR). The SAR will list your expected family contribution. They will email you the SAR if you provided an email address. If not, or if you filed a paper version of the FAFSA, they will mail your SAR. If you filed a paper form, you will receive your SAR about four to six weeks after you submit your FAFSA.

Where can I go for help?
Your guidance counselor or the financial aid office of the college that interests you can help you. They can tell you what forms to fill out and the steps to follow to receive the financial aid available to you. Follow their instructions carefully. Filling out a form incorrectly or submitting it late could cause you to lose money.

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