"I can’t wait to fill out my FAFSA form," said no one ever. But that might change thanks to the new FAFSA Simplification Act – the upgrade for which we've all been waiting. 

Big changes are rolling out for the 2024-2025 aid year, making the aid more generous and the FAFSA process less of a headache. Colorado State University Global is here to guide you through the new, sleeker application process and extended eligibility. It's the same financial aid journey that you know, just smoother and more user-friendly. 

Ready for a no-fuss FAFSA experience? Let's dive in.

1. More grant money awarded = less financial stress.

If you've been on the fence about continuing your education due to financial constraints, the expanded Pell Grant eligibility, which is launching along with the new FAFSA, might be the support you need. 

About 610,000 previously ineligible students will now qualify for Pell Grants, while an additional 1.5 million students are projected to be eligible for the maximum annual award of $7,395. 

“Nearly a third of our students come from underserved populations, and over 40% are the first in their families to attend college,” said Amanda Elliott, associate director of financial aid and student finance advising at CSU Global. "The Pell Grant — which doesn’t have to be repaid like a loan does — helps lift entire families into a more secure future."

Elliott’s point is underscored by findings released by the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics, indicating that those with a bachelor's degree earn an average of 36% more than those with an associate's degree and 64% more than those with a high school diploma. 

Transitioning from this broader impact, it’s worth noting the specific successes reported by CSU Global alumni — an impressive 88% surveyed reported that their degree got them a better job, and 98% of Colorado employers report being satisfied with CSU Global graduates. 

All this to say — if money is available to earn your college degree, it might be one of the best strategic investments you can make. 

2. The FAFSA will be shorter and more user-friendly.

In the past, FAFSA form-fillers had to answer 108 questions, but that’s been reduced to just 46 at the most. The Department of Education reports that depending on their individual circumstances, some applicants could answer as few as 18 questions and complete the form in less than 10 minutes. 

"We expect it to be a much easier process for students," said Elliott. "In addition to the shortened form, they’ll be using a direct transfer and retrieval of income tax information from the IRS, which minimizes the chances of errors and ensures the financial information provided is accurate."

3. Students can now list up to 20 colleges to receive their FAFSA.

The option to list up to 20 colleges on the FAFSA provides students with expanded choices, not just in terms of where to study but also when to start. 

CSU Global stands out with its flexible enrollment. Students can begin their courses during any of the eight-week terms that best suit their schedule, moving beyond the constraints of a traditional fall start date. By including CSU Global on your FAFSA form, you can ensure that your financial aid options align with this flexibility. Moreover, the FAFSA's adaptability allows you to add CSU Global even after submission, offering you the freedom to adjust your plans.

CSU Global’s school code for the FAFSA is 042087.

Choosing a university comes down to asking yourself, Is this school a good fit? And, Is this school affordable for me? By including CSU Global on your FAFSA and then enrolling, you could see be eligible for scholarships, including the following: 

  • The Degree Completion Scholarship recognizes associate degree graduates and students with over 50 accepted transfer credits who want to complete a bachelor’s degree. The scholarship is awarded to three students each trimester and covers tuition for 24 credits.
  • The Colorado Opportunity Scholarship Initiative (COSI)’s Finish What You Started scholarship. CSU Global has been awarded more than $700,000 to support eligible students in completing their degree or certificate. Grants for up to $5,000 in tuition support are available to Colorado residents who intend to complete their degree or certificate before June 2026. 

"Everyone should take the opportunity to apply for financial aid as they move through their educational journey," said Elliott. "The FAFSA allows students to truly invest in their future by providing a unique opportunity to make funding attainable and, with these FAFSA changes in place, easier than ever to access."