The student news site of El Camino College

El Camino College The Union

The student news site of El Camino College

El Camino College The Union

The student news site of El Camino College

El Camino College The Union

Students apply for financial aid despite lengthy application

What started as simple advice from a friend turned out to be something that now helps Michelle Molano, nursing major, pay her way through college.

“Somebody told me to apply for financial aid, so I gave it a shot,” Molano said.

“Approximately fifty percent of EC students receive at least one type of financial aid payments or waiver from a federal, state, institutional or private resource. We believe, however, that even more students are eligible but simply do not apply,” Tyler Robbins, assistant director of the Financial Aid Office, said.

Not all college students are readily applying for financial aid, because the lengthy application form discourages them.

Failure to meet the deadline because of the complexity of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form is also one of the reasons students shy away from the financial aid process.

“Some students may find the application process difficult even though it has been simplified over the years at the federal, state and institutional levels across the country,” Robbins said.

According to a study released by, “College students who may be eligible for federal financial aid don’t get it for a simple reason-they don’t apply.”

In addition, a common reason students don’t apply for financial aid is that they don’t believe that they qualify.

Students are advised to “read the financial aid handbook and all the information that’s available to you,” Julie Ortiz, financial aid assistant, said.

The Department of Education lists some of the myths about financial aid and among them are: students incorrectly assume that all types of financial aid have an income cutoff; that financial aid is based on merit, and that they have to be classified as a minority in order to get aid.

But it is also stated in the Student Aid website that students should not “make assumptions about what you’ll get-fill out the application and find out.”

There are different types of financial aid available for a variety of needs. Though some kinds of financial aid are catered toward a certain group, there are various types of aid that are being offered to students.

Although it is not a problem at EC, students need to be aware of the opportunity to get money through financial aid.

“They should apply because it really is a big help. If you’re a freshman, it’s going to be hard because you don’t know anything about the application,” Molano said. “But it becomes easy if you keep on seeking advice from the Financial Aid Office.”

More to Discover