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The Oklahoma FAFSA Data Portal is Available!

The Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education (OSRHE) and the Oklahoma College Assistance Program (OCAP) are now offering the Oklahoma FAFSA Data Portal (OK-FDP), a free online tool to help counselors, principals and mentors better assist their high school seniors to successfully complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

By giving authorized individuals from Oklahoma school districts access to student-level information on FAFSA completion status, the OK-FDP will allow educators to provide more targeted assistance to their students. This is instrumental in increasing FAFSA completion rates – especially among first-generation students pursuing postsecondary education. Learn more and get started here!


January/February Edition of Your Bottom Line Now Available

Oklahoma Money Matters presents the January/February edition of Your Bottom Line, a bi-monthly newsletter produced with personal finance organizations, educators and consumers in mind.

Read the current edition.

Happy Holidays from OCAP

View on YouTube.

Call to Action: Please Share Your CAW Results with Us!

Oklahoma College Application Week (CAW) 2017 is winding down for the year. We’ve had reports of amazing results and all the hard work you’ve put in to make CAW 2017 a success! Thank you to all who have submitted their CAW results through our Event Coordinator Exit Survey.

If you have not yet completed an exit survey, please take this opportunity to do so. It only takes a few minutes of your time and will help to ensure the success of future College App Weeks. Even if you didn’t register for this event, you can still report CAW results for any activities you held this fall that provided an opportunity for high school seniors to submit at least one online college application for the 2018-19 academic year. Please complete the exit survey now.

If you have any trouble accessing the survey, please contact Letha Huddleston at the Oklahoma College Assistance Program, (405) 234-4345 or lhuddleston@ocap.org.

Thanks for helping to make this CAW another huge success!



The FAFSA is Coming!

The new FAFSA is almost here! The 2018-19 FAFSA will become available on Oct. 1. Here are a few tips you can share with your students to help them get ready.

The FAFSA should be completed as soon as possible after Oct. 1 to ensure priority consideration for some types of financial aid. Students can prepare by gathering their information now. Since the 2018-19 FAFSA requires applicants to use 2016 tax information, they can use their 2016 return to complete the application at FAFSA.gov right away! There will be no need to wait.

Also, to complete and submit the FAFSA online, students and one of their parents/guardians will each need to create a FSA ID (Federal Student Aid ID) at FSAID.ed.gov. This username/password serves as a signature on the FAFSA and student loan applications, and allows them to access other federal aid websites. It’s beneficial for families to create their FSA IDs before starting the FAFSA form at FAFSA.gov to speed up the application process.

For more information and FAFSA resources, including educational tools and tutorial videos in English and Spanish, visit StartWithFAFSA.org.

Ready Set Repay Offers New Video: Borrow Smart while in School

Ready Set Repay, the default prevention initiative of the Oklahoma College Assistance Program (OCAP), strives to help borrowers successfully navigate the student loan borrowing and repayment process. That’s why we’re sharing the first video in our Smart Borrowing series. This short video helps students learn how to make smart borrowing decisions from the start, with a focus on minimizing borrowing and stretching their financial aid dollars.

The video is available on OCAP’s YouTube Channel and on the home page at ReadySetRepay.org. Feel free to share this video with your students or link to it from your school’s website.

Screenshot of Smart Borrowing While in School video, links to YouTube page.

OCAP’s Partnership with Student Connections is an Investment in Student Success

The Oklahoma College Assistance Program (OCAP) recognizes the impact default prevention has on the mutual success of institutions and borrowers. Helping schools excel in this area is what led Mary Heid, OCAP’s executive director, to work with Student Connections, a nonprofit affiliate of USA Funds focused on enhancing student success in college and career. Under Heid’s leadership, OCAP forged an arrangement with Student Connections to provide default rate management support to 26 Oklahoma campuses with CDRs (cohort default rates) above 10 percent. The agreement provides the schools with the ability to offer comprehensive grace period and default prevention counseling to their borrowers.

Since OCAP began working with Student Connections, it has seen marked improvements in beneficiary school CDRs. “Our schools all seem extremely happy with the service we’ve been able to offer them through Student Connections,” said Heid. “Our state CDR rate has been declining at a greater pace than the national rate, which makes us feel really good that our service is working.”

Student Connections grace counseling informs borrowers of all options, which may include a return to school. In all cases, the objective is to determine the course of action best for the borrower’s individual circumstances. Since the OCAP partnership with Student Connections began, students who underwent grace counseling were more than 40 percent less likely to enter delinquency on their student loans.

Whether it’s measured in reduced default and delinquency rates or in the hundreds of millions of cured federal loan dollars, it’s clear the OCAP-Student Connections partnership has helped preserve the value proposition of higher education in Oklahoma. As Heid says, “I think this investment in our students and institutions is rather unique, and we are very pleased that we’ve been able to do that with an industry partner that shares our vision of student success.”

Read more about the Student Connections-OCAP partnership at the Student Connections website.

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