The student news site of Atlantic High School


The student news site of Atlantic High School


The student news site of Atlantic High School



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FAFSA Is Changing

Students think about FAFSA applications as the opening is nearing.
Applications for FAFSA will open Dec. 1, 2023.
Applications for FAFSA will open Dec. 1, 2023.

Have you ever heard of Free Application for Federal Student Aid? Do you know what it is, or why it is important? Do you know that applications open on December 1, 2023? What about changes made to the application process this year? If you answered “no” to at least one of these questions, chances are your peers did as well. 

Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) according to their website,, 2023, is “responsible for managing the student financial assistance programs authorized under Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965.” These programs provide students attending college or a career school grant, work-study, and loan funds. So, in simple terms, FAFSA provides financial help towards schooling expenses for those who qualify, making college less of a monetary burden. Finally, by graduation time, you need to prepare to pay your loans back. A six-month grace period is offered, and it’s recommended you use this time to become organized on how these payments will be covered. However, if you start to fall behind, a financial aid servicer is available to help you become organized. 

This year, however, more chatter has been arising about the program amongst college students, or soon-to-be college students. The application process has some recent changes, the first being the form. In the past, the form to apply has been lengthy, causing headaches. Now, the process will be much shorter and will rely almost entirely on parents’ tax returns from the previous two years. Next, changes in terminology are happening, previously the EFC (Expected Family Contribution) is now changed to SAI (Student Aid Index) to communicate that this isn’t the exact number families are expected to contribute. 

So, whether you are a senior applying for FAFSA or a junior, sophomore, or freshman learning about it for the first time, knowing what FAFSA does is essential, and absolutely necessary for the next stages of your adult life.

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About the Contributor
Anna Potts, AHS Needle Editor
AHS Sophomore Anna Potts is a staff writer for Journalism. This is her first year being a part of the department. She joined journalism because of her special interest in writing, like putting her “thoughts into words,” and “socializing with people.” As of right now Potts has three published stories on AHSneedle, and is working on her fourth, as well as an editor bio. She also enjoys writing opinion pieces. In addition to this, this is Potts’ first year at AHS as she previously went to Exira-Elk Community School District in Elk Horn. “I came here for more academic opportunities.” Compared to her last school Potts feels that she has a lot more opportunities here at AHS and can be “pushed more.” In her free time outside of school she plays softball, reads, spends time with her friends and family as well as her pets. Potts has two brothers, Aiden (19)  and Trey (27), and two dogs named Ruby and Ollie.    By Trinity Christensen 

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