Thomas Jefferson Future Center

Important news about college and career access

February 5, 2016 Newsletter

Hello TJ seniors! Welcome to the first TJ Future Center Newsletter. These newsletters will come out regularly from now until the rest of the school year. Please make sure to check your email for important updates on scholarships, events, and advice. If you have requests for topics we should cover, just let us know at

Focus on $$$ in January and February!

Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)

Now is the time to work on completing your FAFSA applications. Whether you are considering a four year college, two year college, technical school or certificate programs, the FAFSA will help you get access to as much FREE MONEY as possible. It only takes about 30 minutes to complete could save you thousands of dollars and help you get the degree or certificate you've always dreamed of.

Many schools have FAFSA deadlines coming up on February 15 or March 1 so in order to maximize the amount of money you are awarded, you should get started on your application now!

STEP 1: Go to and create a username and password called an FSA ID.

STEP 2: Verify your email by entering the secure code.

STEP 3: Login using your username and password at and start a 2016-17 FAFSA application.

STEP 4: Respond to the questions about you and your parents. If your parents have not filed their 2015 taxes yet, they should use their 2014 information to estimate their earnings for 2015 and submit your FAFSA now rather than waiting until they file their 2015 taxes. They will be able to update your information later.

STEP 5: Your parent creates an FSA ID and you both sign the FAFSA electronically using your FSA IDs.

STEP 6: Make sure that the FAFSA processes successfully. You should receive an email within 1 week confirming that it processed successfully (this is different from just submitting the application). You can also login to to check the status of your application. Once you see that it has processed successfully, print a copy of your Student Aid Report and bring it to the Future Center (room 104) to be entered to win a $25 giftcard!

Photos from the Super FAFSA Advising Hours in January

Help! I don't know how to complete my FAFSA!

Don't worry. Help is just around the corner! Check out these resources:

1) The Future Center (Room 104) - Staff is available in the Future Center Monday through Friday from 8am-4pm to answer questions, work with you on your application, or meet with your parents to assist them. You can reach the Future Center director to set up an appointment or ask a question by phone or text at 804-213-2423 or by email at

2) GRASP Advisor - Ms. Phenie Golatt is a trained financial aid advisor who is available most Tuesdays during the school day to answer questions, work with you on your application, or meet with your parents to assist them. You can reach Ms. Golatt by email at

3) School Counselor - Your school counselor is also able to assist you with completing your FAFSA application.

4) Watch this quick video that explains the entire Financial Aid Process:

5) Attend a FAFSA Advising Event - GRASP is organizing FAFSA advising hours throughout the month of February at various locations throughout the Richmond region. Check out the full calendar at

Upcoming College Application Deadlines

February 15 - Randolph College

March 1 - Hampden Sydney College, Hampton University, Randolph Macon College

May 1 - Virginia State University

Rolling Admission (i.e. no deadline) - Averett College, Bluefield College, Bridgewater College, Eastern Mennonite University, Ferrum College, Liberty University, Lynchburg College, Marymount University, Norfolk State University, Regent University, Roanoke College, Shenandoah University, Virginia Union University and all community colleges

Now is the time to apply for scholarships. There are some with deadlines listed below, but you should also check Career Cruising and the Scholarship Wall in the Future Center for additional opportunities. NOTE: If you don't remember how to access Career Cruising, visit the Future Center for a quick tutorial and to get your login.

Virginia State Scholarship Fund Scholarship - $1,500

  • Deadline: 2/15/2016
  • Get paper application in Future Center (Room 104)
  • Female students only
  • Do not need to attend Virginia State University

Lilies of the Valley Scholarship - $500

  • Deadline: 3/31/2016
  • Get paper application in Future Center or Guidance
  • Minimum of 2.5 GPA

Richmond Public Schools Education Foundation Scholarships - $1,000 each (and each recipient may also get a laptop to take to college)