ISAC participates in Money Smart Week – Natural Self Esteem

April is National Financial Literacy Month and the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago’s Virtual Money Smart Week® will be held April 9-16, 2022 and will feature several free financial education opportunities. The Illinois Student Assistance Commission (ISAC), the state agency for college admissions and financial assistance, is participating in Money Smart Week® by offering free resources and tools to help students and families improve their financial literacy and by Encourages and assists students to complete a financial report grant application.

“Especially after the financial challenges of the past two years as a result of the pandemic, it is becoming increasingly important to offer everyone opportunities to improve their financial literacy and learn how to better manage finances,” said ISAC Executive Director Eric Zarnikow. “One role ISAC plays is to provide students and families with the objective and accurate information they need to make informed decisions about post-high school education. This includes ensuring that students know what financial aid is available to them. By completing an application for financial aid such as the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA®), students may be surprised to find that more educational opportunities are available to them than they thought financially possible.” Check out the list of events, resources and assistance available to support financial literacy and college planning:

Virtual events of the Money Smart Week®

  • Saturday 9th April – Saturday 16th April – Money Smart Week® Event! Sign up for a free Money Smart Week® virtual webinar April 9-16 to gain financial knowledge and skills to make more informed personal financial decisions. Register at www.moneysmartweek.org.
  • Monday, April 11, 2:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. – ISAC Webinar on Lending to Public Services. If you work in the government or non-profit organization, you may be eligible for student loan forgiveness. Join our next free Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) webinar at ISAC to learn more about the PSLF program, eligibility, and the limited PSLF waiver that allows borrowers to obtain credit for payments that not previously qualified for PSLF. The limited waiver ends on October 31, 2022, so don’t delay! Learn more about these free monthly webinars and register at https://www.isac.org/pslf.
  • Wednesday, April 13, 6:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. – Virtual presentation “College Expense Management for Students”. Join ISACorps members Elizabeth Groves and Sarah Carter as they discuss scholarships, getting financial support, and how campus jobs work. Learn more and register at https://services.rockfordpubliclibrary.org/event/6237928.

Free financial education, financial assistance and college planning tools, resources and support services available through ISAC and the US Department of Education

  • Free study and grant planning and assistance from your local ISACorps member. The ISACorps are recent college graduates trained by ISAC professionals to serve as peer mentors to mentor and mentor students as they plan their post-high school education. ISACorps provides free in-person and virtual assistance in communities across the state, providing assistance in exploring and planning post-secondary education (whether a certificate, degree, or other program); career exploration; Directing the grant process and assisting in the completion of the FAFSA or, if eligible, the Illinois Alternative Grant Application; Identifying and applying for specialized grants and scholarships and more. Visit https://studentportal.isac.org/isacorps to find your local ISACorps member and check out the ISACorps Events Calendar to find a college planning or financial aid event or workshop near you! https://studentportal.isac.org/Events
  • Find scholarships, compare grant notices, calculate financial aid and more by exploring the tools and resources on the ISAC student portalstudentenportal.isac.org.
    • play that Claim Your Future® game, https://isac.claimyourfuture.com/ available through the ISAC student portal. An interactive experience for middle school students and above, the game encourages exploration of post-high school education, future careers, and money management.
    • Cash ISAC College Minute™ Videos in the Now Running section of the ISAC student portal, https://studentportal.isac.org/blog, for 1-minute tips on topics such as financial aid and college planning.
  • Get answers to questions about financial aid and college planning via SMS via the ISAC College Q&A free SMS service, https://www.isac.org/collegeqa. ISAC experts answer questions, and the service also provides subscribers with important notifications about college planning events and deadlines.
  • Learn about student loan repayment options and more. While the federal student loan repayment pause has been extended through August 31, 2022, student loan borrowers should make sure they know who their loan administrator is, understand the nature of their loan, and learn about student loan repayment options and forgiveness programs. Visit https://studentaid.gov/h/manage-loans to learn more about student loans, repayment and COVID-19 emergency assistance for student loan borrowers.

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