As you know, the Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) serves over 72 million individuals and their families by providing health coverage to adults and children. Providing available financial aid to Medicaid/CHIP participants who wish to pursue post-secondary education and training can offer opportunities for them and their families to gain the knowledge and skills needed to succeed in the workforce and strengthen their communities.
Starting on October 1, Medicaid/CHIP beneficiaries can complete the FAFSA to access the $180 billion investments available for higher education. The College Scorecard shows the cost, graduation rates, earnings, and debt information for each school, to help ensure that their dollars are going to a good-value school where they can succeed if they work hard.
You play a critical role in helping notify Medicaid/CHIP beneficiaries around October 1 about these important resources, starting with the attached flyer and with the message below. You may wish to share this information with Medicaid/CHIP beneficiaries in routine emails or newsletters, on your website, and at your local office’s front reception. For your convenience, a message is drafted below for you to send to your communities:
The benefits of a college degree. Research shows that education can be a key pathway to the middle class, as college graduates earn $1 million more in their lifetime compared to high school graduates, have better health, and have higher life satisfaction. By providing the most accessible information on higher education, FAFSA and the College Scorecard will help students make more informed decisions about their futures.
To access the $180 billion in Federal student aid available, students must first complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) at FAFSA.gov. Beginning October 1st, students will be able to access the FAFSA for the 2017-2018 school year. Given Medicaid/CHIP eligibility requirements, it is expected that most beneficiaries and their families would qualify for student financial aid.
To find the program designed for you, the new College Scorecard provides the first comprehensive data on college costs, graduation rates, earnings, and student debt at colleges and universities across the United States. This video shows how the College Scorecard can help you find a good-value school.
To access step-by-step support and additional information, the First Lady’s Up Next texting tool provides advising for FAFSA completion, the college search, and student debt repayment. Text COLLEGE to 44044 to get started. Click here for videos on FAFSA completion and on the Scorecard.
For additional information and support, the Financial Aid Toolkit has ready-made materials for counselors, students, and families to answer the most common questions.
Completing the FAFSA may mean the difference between going to, and completing, college or not. Thank you for your partnership and for sharing information about opportunities available to support education and skills-building with Medicaid/CHIP beneficiaries.