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Completing Promise, FAFSA Paperwork Could Lead to Prizes In New Contest

High school seniors who fill out Promise Scholarship applications and the Free Application for Federal Student Aid will have a chance to win prizes as a little extra motivation.

The Education Alliance and the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission is holding a “Cool Cash for College” contest through March 1, 2021. High school seniors who fill out Promise Scholarship and FAFSA paperwork by that date will be entered into drawings for prizes like Apple AirPods, wireless printers, mini refrigerators and gift cards.

The HEPC hopes that incentive will spur more high school seniors to fill out those forms. Those numbers this year are far behind where they were last year. High school seniors have completed 2,700 Promise Scholarship applications and 3,600 FAFSA applications so far this year. At this time last year, seniors completed more than 7,200 Promise Scholarship applications and 5,300 FAFSA applications.

“We know our seniors are grappling every day with uncertainties around attending school in person, keeping up good grades in a virtual environment, and staying healthy and safe,” state Higher Education Chancellor Sarah Armstrong Tucker said. “This is a lot to deal with, but we have to encourage our young people to not lose sight of their futures. Now is the time to complete the FAFSA, fill out the Promise Scholarship application, and plan for what’s next.”

Amelia Courts, president and CEO of The Education Alliance, said boosting those numbers was a “must-win” situation.

“”The dramatic decrease in student applications could have terrible repercussions for our most vulnerable students and cause them to miss out on valuable financial aid for college next fall,” she said.

Drawings among seniors who have completed the Promise application and FAFSA will take place on December 17, January 12, February 16, and March 2. The Promise Scholarship application is due by March 1, and students have until August 31 to earn qualifying ACT or SAT test scores.

For more information about the contest, visit http://educationalliance.org/contest/. The FAFSA is free and available through the U.S. Department of Education at fafsa.gov. The Promise Scholarship application is available at cfwv.com/promise.

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