The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) can provide federal grants, work-study, and loans to college students. Your college uses the FAFSA data to determine federal aid eligibility and to award their own aid.
Filing out the FAFSA Form is the first step. Learn tips and tricks and get step by step instructions here and here. You will need all of the following documents if they apply to you and your parents if you are a dependent:
- Your Social Security number
- Your parents' social security number if you are a dependent
- Your drivers license number (if applicable)
- Your Alien Registration number if you are not a U.S. Citizen
- Federal tax information, tax documents or tax returns (IRS W-2)
- IRS 104
- Foreign tax return (IRS 1040NR)
- Records for untaxed income
- Information on cash, savings and checking account balances, investments, business and farm assests
After submission, you can check the status of your application here and determine if further action needs to be taken on your application. After your application has been processed, you will receive a summary of your data in your Student Aid Report. This report will not tell you how much financial aid you will receive. Your aid offer amount will be sent by your college in an award letter.
After you receive your aid offer, you will need to determine what aid you would like to accept. Accept financial aid in this order:
- Scholarships & grants (free money)
- Work study (earned money)
- Federal Student loans (borrowed money)
Once you have decided what aid you will accept, you will need to follow the instructions on your award letter to inform the school what you will be accepting.
If you need more specific information about West Chester University's procedures around the FAFSA, please contact the WCU Financial Aid Office.
The IRS’s Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program offers free basic tax return preparation to qualified individuals. VITA sites are operated by IRS partners and are staffed by volunteers that want to make a difference in their community. These volunteers receive law training that meets IRS standards, including privacy and confidentiality maintenance.
Individuals that may receive assistance from a VITA may include:
- People who make less than $58,000 per year
- People with a disability
- Limited English-speaking taxpayers
Find a VITA location
VITA locations are usually in accessible locations, such as a community center, library, school, or mall. To find a location near you, visit the VITA locator or call 800-906-9887.
Before you visit
Make sure you review Publication 3676-B to review what services are offered at a VITA site. You will also want to review what documents and information you will need to bring here to make your visit go smoothly.