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12th Year Campaign

Financial Aid Advising Day logo12th Year Campaign

The 12th Year Campaign boosts college and financial aid application rates in Washington by helping those working with high school seniors and their families complete applications for college admissions and financial aid. This page contains and information and resources designed to help schools and partners host a successful financial aid advising day. Explore the different sections below to learn more.

Supporting Washington's Financial Aid Advising Day

Financial aid matters. Nationally, seniors who complete a financial aid application are 84 percent more likely to enroll in postsecondary education. The rate is even higher for students from lower‐income families. From an apprenticeship program to a two-or-four-year college degree, education beyond high school prepares students for jobs that move them beyond minimum wage. Even a one-year credential program at a community or technical college can increase future earnings. 

Districts across Washington have an exciting opportunity to provide students with new support by sharing critical information for planning life after high school. Financial aid advising day, created with the passage of ESSB 6141 in the 2020 Legislative session, is an opportunity to focus on educational equity related to students pursuing postsecondary education.

What is a financial aid advising day?

Learn about the details and requirements of financial aid advising day, as well as the resources the 12th Year Campaign has to support schools.  

What is a financial aid advising day? 

What is a financial aid advising day?

A financial aid advising day is an opportunity to provide every senior and their family with key resources and knowledge for completing the financial aid application process. Per ESSB 6141, districts with a high school must provide both a financial aid advising day and notification of financial aid opportunities at the beginning of each school year to parents and guardians of any student entering the twelfth grade.

The 12th Year Campaign is here to help

Program logoThe 12th Year Campaign is here to help!

The 12th Year Campaign provides sites with free financial aid training, free print and digital materials for students and families, and helps host virtual statewide financial aid completion events.

What should the notification include?

What should the notification to students include?

The notification must include information regarding: 

  • The eligibility requirements of the Washington College Grant.
  • Information on resources, including the CSS profile and new financial aid calculator
  • Any community-based resources available to assist parents and guardians in understanding the requirements of and how to complete the free application for federal student aid (FAFSA) and the Washington application for state financial aid (WASFA).
  • The full requirements of the financial aid advising day, which can be found in ESSB 6141. For more information, see the OSPI bulletin

Opting out

Opting out

All students are encouraged to participate in financial aid advising day because of the connection between applying for aid and students ultimately pursuing college and career education. However, a district process for opting out of the financial aid advising day should be created. We've provided templates (English I Spanish) to use when creating your opt out process.

Students who wish to opt out of the financial aid advising day should complete a form similar to this template and records should be retained at your campus. Forms do not need to be turned in to WSAC or OSPI. 

    Support modules

    Every module features a resource, video, and Kahoot quiz for your use. Use these modules to help prepare students for your financial aid advising day.

    What is financial aid?

    What is financial aid? 

    Resource: What is financial aid infographic 

    Activity: What is financial aid quiz

    Video: What is financial aid?

    Where does financial aid come from?

    Where does financial aid come from?

    Resource: 12th Year Campaign workbook and Types of federal financial aid infographic

    Video: Where does financial aid come from?

    Activity: Financial aid quiz

    Financial aid myths

    Financial aid myths

    Resource: Five Financial Aid Myths infographic (also in Spanish)

    Video: Financial Aid Myths

    Activity: Financial Aid Myths quiz

    Which application should I use?

    Which application should I use?

    Resource: Federal aid eligibility infographic

    Video: Which Application Should I Use?

    Activity: Should you use the FAFSA or WASFA? 

    How to create an FSA ID

    How to create an FSA ID

    Resource: FSA ID worksheet

    Video: How to create an FSA ID

    Activity: FSA ID quiz

    Financial aid dependency status

    Whose information will I need for my financial aid application?

    Resources: Financial aid dependency information and Who is my parent when I apply for financial aid? 

    Video: Whose information will I need?

    Activity: Dependency quiz

    How to sign your application

    How to sign your application

    Resource: 12th Year workbook 

    Video: How to sign your application

    Activity: Application signing quiz

    Navigating verification

    Navigating verification

    Video: Navigating verification 

    Activity: Navigating verification quiz

    Cost of attendance

    Cost of attendance

    Resource: College Knowledge website 

    Video: Cost of attendance

    Activity: Cost of attendance quiz

    Understanding award letters

    Understanding award letters

    Resource: Award letter key components worksheet, living off-campus, and living on-campus

    Video: Understanding your award

    Activity: Use the award letter worksheets under Resources to assess your award letter. 

    Requesting financial aid appeals

    Requesting financial aid appeals

    Resource: WSAC financial aid appeals website

    Video: Requesting a financial aid appeal

    Activity: Requesting a financial aid appeal quiz 

    12th Year Campaign and partner materials

    Otterbot 

    Otterbot 

    Otterbot is a free texting service designed to help Washington students navigate financial aid for college and career education. Students can access Otterbot via text message 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Text "Hi Otter" to 360-928-7281Learn more.

    Financial aid event materials

    Use these materials to support financial aid events and discussions - either in-person or virtually.

    • Padlet: Financial Aid Resources for Students 
      This student based padlet provides a list of resources that will navigate students through the financial aid and admissions processes.
    • 12th Year Campaign Virtual Financial Aid Event Toolkit This toolkit will assist you with developing and hosting your own virtual financial aid event.
    • Promotional Poster (English) (Spanish) Download or order posters to help advertise financial aid completion efforts. 
    • Postcards: You Can’t Get Financial Aid if You Don’t Apply. Use these postcards to remind students what documents are needed and where to find help when applying for financial aid.  You can order or download these postcards in five languages.
    • FSA ID Worksheet Use this worksheet to help students collect and remember all the information needed to create a Federal Student Aid ID, which is used to sign a FAFSA.
    • Student Survey Please use this survey after any financial aid events or workshops you hold!
    • Financial Aid Night Financial Aid 101 Presentation Slides. This presentation, with accompanying notes and video recording listed below, can be used to “plug and play” a financial aid overview presentation to students and families
    • Financial Aid Night Financial Aid 101 Presentation Video (pending)

    More materials

    More materials 

    Federal student aid infographics

    Federal student aid infographics

    Visit the Federal Student Aid Resources site for downloadable resources in English and Spanish on a variety of topics from “Who’s my parent?” to “Understanding dependency”.

    College and Career Pathways handouts

    College and Career Pathways handouts

    College and Career Pathways An outline of potential postsecondary pathways.

    College Means What do we mean when we say college? Help students understand the diversity of the term.

    How to Become an Apprentice Help students interested in apprenticeships understand how to pursue this pathway.

    Technical and Special Colleges An overview of technical and specialty colleges.

    Military Pathways An overview of the different pathways related to joining the military.

    LGBTQ+ and College Access Supporting LGBTQ+ students through the admissions and financial aid process.

    Youth in Foster Care Supporting youth in foster care through the admissions and financial aid process.

    Financial Aid and Unaccompanied Homeless Youth Supporting unaccompanied homeless youth with the financial aid process.

    Information on Student Loans A brief overview of student loans.

    Translated resources

    Translated resources

    Financial Aid Myths infographic in Spanish

    Puget Sound College and Career Network radio spots on College Knowledge in Spanish

    GEAR UP family guides in seven additional languages

    Check out the College Knowledge Project section of this site for those materials

    The College Knowledge Project 

    Over the past several years, a team of organizations worked together to create the College Knowledge Project, consisting of 23 student-tested and approved digital handouts compiled into a workbook designed to support college and career education planning. Full workbooks can be ordered through the 12th Year Campaign and digital copies can be found via the Washington College Access Network website. Lesson plans are also available for each chapter of the workbook to be used to guide students through the College Knowledge content. 

    The College Knowledge Project

    The College Knowledge Project is a collaborative effort of:

    • Community Center for Education Results (CCER)
    • Puget Sound College and Career Network (PSCCN)
    • College Success Foundation/Washington College Access Network (CSF)
    • Washington Student Achievement Council (WSAC

    College Knowledge hard copies

    College Knowledge hard copies

    Order your hard-copy College Knowledge workbooks via the 12th Year Campaign. Workbooks are currently available in English and Spanish.

    College Knowledge handouts

    College Knowledge handouts

    Visit the Washington College Access Network website for specific College Knowledge chapters or one-pager handouts.

    College Knowledge lesson plans

    College Knowledge lesson plans

    Created by CCER in collaboration with classroom teachers, these lesson plans were created to support implementation of the College Knowledge workbook content. Choose what’s most useful for you from these ready-to-use Google Slides.

    12th Year Campaign training

    Access these trainings to deepen your understanding of financial aid. Regional training may be offered by other organizations such as local community-based organizations. Please contact us if you are looking to connect with a local community-based organization or would like to schedule or join a WSAC-led training.

    Recorded trainings

    Recorded Trainings

    Visit the WSAC YouTube Channel for recorded training on financial aid and other related topics.

    Live virtual trainings

    Live virtual trainings

    Join the Aim Higher WA initiative for live financial aid training and strategy session opportunities. Click here for more information and to register for these free trainings. 

    WSAC Wednesday

    Practitioners, do you have questions about financial aid? WSAC's College Access and Support division is here to help! Join us the first Wednesday of every month from 10:00-11:00am for an open Q&A. Register in advance at https://bit.ly/WSACWednesday.

    Wednesday Webinars

    Wednesday Webinars

    During the 2022-23 school year, the Washington Student Achievement Council (WSAC) and the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) will co-host a series of webinars for school counselors. Over the course of the year, we will provide relevant and timely information related to college readiness and financial aid, including specific policy changes and useful tools and resources to help you support students.

    All webinars will take place from 9:00 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. Registration information can be found here. Registration information will also be sent on OSPI's News & More for School Counselors. Subscribe at https://public.govdelivery.com/accounts/WAOSPI/subscriber/new. View the Wednesday Webinar Archives from the last several years for even more information. 
     


    2022-23 WEBINARS

    October 19, 2022

    Financial Aid Advising Day & Financial Aid Supports (recording)

    February 1, 2023

    TBD-will be based on feedback from participants! (recording pending)

    May 17, 2023

    Legislative Updates and Celebrations (recording pending)

    Statewide virtual student and parent events

    Statewide student financial aid filing events

    Statewide student financial aid filing events

    The 12th Year Campaign will be hosting statewide virtual financial aid informational and filing this year. Interested in attending our events? Please visit our events page to see upcoming events and register.  

    Parent town halls

    Dates coming soon!

    Data

    College Bound Scholarship sign-up data

    College Bound Scholarship sign-up data

    Learn about your district’s College Bound Scholarship pipeline by visiting our sign-up dashboards.

    FAFSA completion dashboard

    FAFSA completion dashboard

    Understand your district’s FAFSA completion trends and others throughout the state.

    Student-level FAFSA completion portal

    Student-level FAFSA completion portal

    Access student-level FAFSA completion data by utilizing the WSAC’s FAFSA completion portal. Districts must have a signed data sharing agreement on file. Email fafsa@wsac.wa.gov to confirm your district has theirs in, get an account and gain access.

    Watch our video on how to use the FAFSA completion portal.