Since 1923 • For a greater Loyola

The Maroon

Since 1923 • For a greater Loyola

The Maroon

Since 1923 • For a greater Loyola

The Maroon

FAFSA’s new website update causes problems

Laci Barrow
Photo illustration of a student attempting to fill out FASFA form.

Almost all college students know the long and draining process of filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid forms and applications. It is a dreaded, but necessary part of being a college student.

Federal Student Aid has resorted to an easier application process for students and parents, but many do not feel that these changes have helped at all. Some students feel that there have been more troubles since the reboot than less.

Federal Student Aid updated the process for the 2024-2025 college school year, causing a three-month delay in the application process. Normally, the process begins in October, but now students have just begun applying in January. During this delay, the goal was to fix problems that students and parents have faced during the application process, according to The Associated Press.

Religious studies freshman August Bay has had multiple problems attempting to fill out FAFSA forms. The remodeling of the website has led to more frequent website issues for students like Bay.

“The website would not load at all. Every single time it would load, it would say, ‘You can not log in. Please come back later,’” they said. “I think my dad and I went three different days doing that and just nothing worked,” Bay said.

Federal Student Aid says the application should be filled out in less than an hour, but it took Bay and their family over a week to be fully completed.

“I don’t think we even decided to start working on it until the 10th of January because it was getting so confusing,” Bay said. “We didn’t officially start it and finish it until yesterday [Jan. 18th],” Bay said.

A problem that Bay faced while trying to complete the forms was a lack of communication.

Bay explained how there were scheduled times when Federal Student Aid’s website would be shut down, but there would be no communication with students or parents. Bay would not receive notices that the website was going to be shut down. Instead, they would try to go on the website and fill out the forms, only to be denied access.

Along with the technical issues Bay faced with the website, they also realized how much of a struggle it was to fully understand the forms, causing even more concerns about FAFSA.

“I do believe the way they communicate things, the way the writing is, it’s specifically targeted for the highest literate people,” they said. “Even people with college degrees, it’s hard for them to understand and communicate.”

Bay added that the word choices in the application forms contribute to the lack of understanding that students and parents may feel.

“It feels like regular humans can’t translate this. That’s always my biggest issue with FAFSA. I feel like I am sitting there with Google next to me trying to understand it,” Bay said.

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About the Contributor
Laci Barrow
Laci Barrow, Photo Editor
Laci Barrow currently serves as The Maroon's Photo Editor. Laci is a junior mass communication major focusing on public relations and minoring in marketing. She loves connecting with her community through the art of storytelling. Outside of the Maroon, you can find Laci scoping out spots to take great landscape pictures and weightlifting. For inquiries, reach out to Laci via email at [email protected]

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