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Latino U College Access Offers College Aid Workshops In White Plains

Latino U College Access volunteers assist high school seniors and their parents at last year's "FAFSA Boot Camps."
Latino U College Access volunteers assist high school seniors and their parents at last year's "FAFSA Boot Camps." Photo Credit: Contributed
The workshops are free and provide hands-on assistance with the college financial aid application known as FAFSA.
The workshops are free and provide hands-on assistance with the college financial aid application known as FAFSA. Photo Credit: Contributed

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. -- Latino U College Access will hold free financial aid workshops known as “FAFSA Boot Camps” in White Plains and Sleepy Hollow to help Westchester high school seniors and their families complete FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) applications – a time-sensitive form that is key to any college-bound youth seeking to qualify for financial aid.

New York State and most colleges use the FAFSA to make financial aid awards and it also can influence scholarship eligibility.

Latino U staff and volunteers, many of whom are bilingual, will host the first “FAFSA Boot Camp” on Sunday, Jan. 18, at 1 p.m. at the White Plains Public Library.

At the workshop, held in partnership with the White Plains Public Library in its “The Edge Teen Media Lab,” volunteers will work individually with families and provide hands-on assistance with the completion of each high school senior’s FAFSA application.

Mercy College is the sponsor of the White Plains Boot Camp and earlier Financial Aid Information Sessions.

Two additional free FAFSA Boot Camps will be held in Westchester by Latino U on Thursday, Feb. 5 at 7 p.m. at White Plains High School and Tuesday, Feb. 10 at 7 p.m. at Sleepy Hollow High School.  For more information or to volunteer email info@latinouaccess.org.

“Hands-on assistance has been shown to increase FAFSA application submission rates by 40 percent and college enrollment by 29 percent,” said Shirley Acevedo Buontempo, founder and executive director of Latino U College Access. Latino U’s efforts are endorsed and supported by the White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanics.

“Latinos are a large, young, and growing population in the United States,” said Marco Davis, White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanics' deputy director. “Efforts like Latino U’s, that help Hispanic students complete the FAFSA and access college, greatly contribute to those students achieving their full educational potential, securing their families’ future, and strengthening the American economy.”

Volunteer support and assistance is key to the success of this effort and Latino U recruits volunteers from throughout Westchester County.  The Sunday, Jan. 18 workshop is offered in partnership with the volunteer organization Volunteer New York, as part of the Martin Luther King Jr. National Day of Service initiative.

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