College Sendoff 101: Financial Aid Deadlines

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ROANOKE, Va. (WDBJ7) -- The days of summer are here but this is a busy time if your child is heading off to college in the fall.

There are many deadlines for parents and students to meet right now. The most important one is applying for financial aid.

For first-time college families, it's the time they will learn all about FAFSA. The Free Application for Federal Student Aid is the launching point for all financial aid.

It needs to be completed every year you are in school.

As some experts at Virginia Western Community College will tell you, it can be a little intimidating.

"I think it is, it can be. It does have tips and information that can help you go through it," Financial Aid Office Manager Mayra Vasquez-Miller said.

"Here at Virginia Western we are always happy to have students and parents come in and we will walk with them through the FAFSA if they need that."

If student aid and loans are a big issue for your family, community college may be the perfect launching pad.

"I think overall more students are starting to see community college as a great first step. From a transitional standpoint in terms of being a nice intermediary between the high school environment and that 4 year college environment," Enrollment Services Director Brooke Ferguson said.

If you want to learn more about FAFSA or need to get started on your application, click here.