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FREE COLLEGE APPLICATIONS, MORE OFFERED DURING DELAWARE’S COLLEGE APPLICATION MONTH Students receive school-day help to apply to college as part of broader campaign to expand access to higher education

Delaware high school students can apply to select colleges and universities for free in October and November in celebration of the state’s fifth annual College Application Month, which began this week and runs through Nov. 17.

Application fees to all Delaware colleges and universities as well as Cabrini University in Radnor, Pa., are waived during the two months. Application fees to Salisbury University in Salisbury, Md., are waived through the end of October. Application fee waivers for additional schools also are available for income-qualified students.

As part of the state’s College Application Month, Delaware schools provide seniors computer lab time during the school day to apply to college. Students receive information packets from the Delaware Department of Education’s Higher Education Office about college and career options, and additional supports are provided to families on completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) for federal student aid.

“All Delaware students need additional education after high school graduation,” Secretary of Education Susan Bunting said. “This means a four-year degree to some. For others, it means associate degrees, apprenticeships, certificate programs or military service. During College Application Month, we want all students to have the time to pursue what paths they want to take after high school.”

Delaware’s College Application Month focuses on making students aware of the many supports available to them as they transition from high school to college and into their future careers. During the summer leading up to College Application Month, every Delaware high school student receives summer checklists with important reminders about how to prepare for the next year. First-generation college students also receive information on programs like the Delaware Goes to College Academy and Delaware College Scholars.

Delaware College Application Month is part of a nationwide effort to assist high school seniors in the college application process and increase college attendance. Special focus is placed on first-generation college students or those who otherwise may not have considered applying to college. The program started with a pilot school in North Carolina in 2005. All 50 states and the District of Columbia plan to host events in 2017.

Students can also search for local and national scholarships on the online 2017-2018 Delaware Scholarship Compendium: A Guide for College-Bound Students, providing a free, mobile way for students to find scholarships by category and deadline. Students and parents can search scholarships by eligibility requirements such as county of residency, ethnicity or race, and profession – about 15 categories in all – as well as alphabetically or by due date. Users then can drill down for more details, including application information. The Scholarship Compendium is still available in print format in limited quantities at all Delaware schools. Users also can download a copy on the Delaware Goes to College website.  A Spanish version also is available online and in print.

This past year Delaware awarded $2.7 million in merit scholarships and incentive loans and almost $7.7 million in SEED and Inspire scholarships to Delaware students. SEED and Inspire provide tuition-free education to eligible Delaware students – from both public and non-public high schools – who earn a grade point average above 2.5 (SEED) or 2.75 (Inspire) on a 4.0 scale. Delaware was one of the first states in the country to offer free college tuition to recent high school graduates.

To begin searching for scholarships online, students can go to http://scholarships.delawaregoestocollege.org/. For more information on College Application Month, visit http://delawaregoestocollege.org/.

Media is welcome to visit schools during College Application Month but must arrange the visit with the school in advance. Please contact Alison.May@doe.k12.de.us for school schedules.