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Four cities of FAFSA chaos: Students tell how they grappled with the mess, stress


The Hechinger Report

FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) updates have caused stress and confusion for US students, especially those from low-income, first-generation, and undocumented families. The problematic rollout has complicated college decisions and delayed private scholarship programs, threatening higher education access. Despite assistance efforts, only 40.2% of high school seniors completed the FAFSA by May 10, compared to 49.6% the previous year. The situation has led some students to consider alternatives like trade schools or the military, while others have deferred college due to financial uncertainty.

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