I can afford college!

Students have until March 2 to apply for a Cal Grant

March 2 is the deadline for new and returning community college students to apply for a Cal Grant for the 2011-2012 academic year. Cal Grant awards of up to $1,551 can be used to help students pay for fees, books, supplies and sometimes even rent while attending a California community college.

I-Can-Afford-College-kids1, I can afford college!, Culture Currents Financial aid often plays a critical role in student success. Those in need of financial aid to make their higher education dreams a reality are encouraged to fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) by the March 2 deadline, in order to maximize their financial aid opportunities.

During the 2009-2010 academic year, the California Community Colleges provided more than one a million students with financial aid totaling approximately $2.2 billion. While these numbers are large, many students are not taking full advantage of the financial aid available at community colleges.

Students can find valuable information about Cal Grants, among other types of financial aid, and complete the FAFSA at www.icanaffordcollege.com. By visiting www.icanaffordcollege.com, students can also get connected with financial aid experts at their local community college campus to receive one-on-one assistance completing the FAFSA.

In addition, many community college campuses are offering free financial aid workshops to assist current and prospective students with the FAFSA before the March 2 deadline. Local campus events can be found by entering your zip code at www.icanaffordcollege.com/events.

Connect with the “I Can Afford College” campaign on Facebook and Twitter: www.facebook.com/icanaffordcollege and @icanafrdcollege.

The California Community Colleges comprise the largest system of higher education in the nation: 72 districts and 112 colleges serving 2.76 million students per year. Community colleges supply workforce training and basic skills education and prepare students for transfer to four-year colleges and universities. The Chancellor’s Office provides leadership, advocacy and support under the direction of the Board of Governors of the California Community Colleges. Their “I Can Afford College” campaign informs current and prospective students and their families that financial aid is available year-round to help cover fees, books, supplies and other education related costs at California’s community colleges.