-- Beware of misleading offers --
RALEIGH, N.C., Dec. 13, 2010 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Just when many high school students are sending off their college applications, solicitations are hitting the mailboxes of those same students offering assistance and information on financial aid – for a fee. College Foundation of North Carolina (CFNC) reminds you that this information is always available for free. You do not need to pay for information on financial aid.
Be careful about invitations, calls or emails about "free" seminars or 'limited time only interviews" on ways to pay for college. Many of these "free" seminars are actually part of a sales pitch for services you're led to believe will help you find financial aid. Be especially cautious of requests that require a fee for assistance, ask for your credit card number or bank account information to draft a fee, or ask for your social security number.
Also, don't be fooled by companies that operate under names suggesting an association with the federal government but require you to pay for help to get a government grant. No payment is required for federal or state grants. You simply need to fill out the Free Application for Federal Aid (FAFSA) at fafsa.gov to see if you are eligible.
You should never have to pay for information about financial aid, to apply for federal financial aid or to receive financial aid.
For free and accurate information about how to pay for college, go to CFNC.org or call toll-free 866-866-CFNC (2362). You can also check with your school counselor or talk with a college financial aid administrator.
College Foundation of North Carolina (CFNC) is a free service of the State of North Carolina that helps students plan, apply, and pay for college. CFNC is a partnership of Pathways, the N.C. State Education Assistance Authority, and College Foundation, Inc.
- Pathways, created by the N.C. General Assembly in 1999, is a state-wide initiative to increase the college-going rate of North Carolinians by providing: comprehensive college and career planning resources; electronic applications and transcripts accepted by all 110 North Carolina colleges and universities; and, information on student financial aid and college affordability. Pathways is administered by The University of North Carolina General Administration in collaboration with the N.C. Department of Public Instruction, the N.C. Community College System, and the N.C. Independent Colleges and Universities.
- The North Carolina State Education Assistance Authority (NCSEAA), established in 1965, is the State agency that promotes access to higher education by administering financial aid and savings programs, informing students and families about paying for college, teaching educators about financial aid administration, and advocating for resources to support students.
- College Foundation, Inc. (CFI), a nonprofit corporation serving North Carolina students and families since 1955, administers a portfolio of more than $3.6 billion, including education loans, the State's college grant programs, and the tax-free "529" college savings program on behalf of the N.C. State Education Assistance Authority. CFI also delivers information to North Carolina students and families about paying for college and provides technology services for CFNC.org.
CFNC offers resources toll-free at 1-866-866-CFNC and at CFNC.org.
SOURCE College Foundation of North Carolina