Week 2 - Financial Aid 101, FAFSA and RDS
10/11/21 - 10/15/21

Things to Accomplish This Week:

  1. Decide which schools you will apply to during College Application Week (10/18-10/22). Many NC colleges and universities waive their fees during these weeks. See who.
  2. Speak with counselors concerning fee waiver forms if applicable (ACT, College Board Fee Waiver) to use for schools that are not waiving fees during College Application Weeks.
  3. Some applications require an essay or personal statement. Review application requirements for the schools you plan to apply to and prepare these in advance.
  4. File your Free Application for Federal Financial Aid (FAFSA) after October 1st in order to begin the financial aid process for college. This one form allows you to apply for federal and state grants (free money for college), federal work-study, and federal student loans. Many colleges also require the FAFSA as part of the application process for institutional scholarships. Review necessary documentation before getting started.
  5. Complete the Residency Determination Service (RDS). This is important for both in-state tuition and financial aid, as the RDS application allows students to apply for in-state Residency, as well as North Carolina state grants. Review necessary documentation before getting started.

Live Virtual Events:

Financial Aid 101

After the FAFSA, but before your first day on campus, you need Financial Aid 101. What is an award letter? If you’ve already completed your FAFSA for the 2021-2022 school year, you had to report your 2020 income on the FAFSA you filed; what if your household situation has changed in 2021? And what if you are selected for verification?  Financial aid administrators will be on hand for a live chat and resources will be offered specific to your questions.

  • Tuesday, 10/12/21 from 6:00 PM - 7:00 PM - Registration coming soon!
  • Wednesday, 10/13/21 from 10:00 AM - 11:00 AM - Registration coming soon!


FAFSA & RDS go together like macaroni and cheese! Prepare to apply to college by completing both. Learn how to avoid the Top 10 FAFSA Errors and what you need to establish North Carolina Residency. Financial aid administrators and Residency Determination Service experts will be on hand for a live chat and resources will be offered specific to your questions.

  • Thursday, 10/14/21 from 6:00 PM - 7:00 PM - Registration coming soon!
  • Friday, 10/15/21 from 10:00 AM - 11:00 AM - Registration coming soon!

How-To Videos:

How-to Create a CFNC Account: 

This brief how-to video walks you through the steps of creating your free CFNC.org account and shows you how to recover or change your account information in the future.

How-to Complete RDS:

This brief how-to video explains how to access the North Carolina RDS tool and get started on your residency determination.

How-to Complete a CFNC College Application: 

This brief how-to video shows you how to use the CFNC.org Application Hub to apply to NC colleges and universities, send your official electronic high school transcript, and track the progress of other admissions tasks.

Helpful Resources To Check Out This Week:

Helpful Spanish Resources: