Financial aid offers more than just money - Brownsville Herald: Education

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Financial aid offers more than just money

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Posted: Tuesday, July 23, 2019 4:49 pm

Without financial aid, TSC alumnus Noel Rangel may not have graduated with an associate degree in social work from TSC in 2018 or had the opportunity to pursue his bachelor’s degree.

“I’m so thankful for financial aid,” Rangel said. “If I didn’t get financial aid, I probably would have had to pay for school working a full-time job and that would’ve been extremely difficult.” Eighty-five percent of TSC students receive financial aid and while the process may seem lengthy, it’s easy to complete the process.

“The first step is filling out your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA),” said Lupita Castillo-Medellin, TSC coordinator of financial aid programs. “After the students submit their FAFSA, it’s important they monitor their email. We notify them within one to two weeks after they submit their FAFSA and let them know if they have any pending documents to submit. If not, we let them know how much money they could receive if they qualify.”

Because Rangel received financial aid, he was able to pursue his degree. While at TSC, he also was involved in TSC’s student clubs and organizations. He acted as president of the college’s student-run campus activities board, was a senator for the TSC Student Government Association and even worked for the financial aid office assisting students with their financial aid process. He said the opportunity to attend TSC helped him branch out and network with members of the community.

“I met a lot of people along the way, whether it was on-campus or off-campus,” said Rangel. “I did community service hours outside of school, I met city employees, it opened up a lot of doors. If it wasn’t for TSC’s student clubs and organizations, I would’ve just stayed off-campus.”

TSC Director of Financial Aid Tillie Flores said all students should submit their FAFSA regardless of whether they receive aid or not.

“Whether they think they might be eligible or not, students should still apply for financial aid no matter what,” said Flores. “I really encourage all students to apply every year just to be on the safe side because they could get something they think they couldn’t.”

After Rangel earns his bachelor’s degree, he plans to help his community through social work and make a difference.

“I’d like to work in a nursing home in Brownsville or a hospital,” said Rangel. “I want to give back to the community so something involving the homeless and finding people homes is also an option.”

Castillo-Medellin said students who are interested in enrolling for the fall 2019 semester at TSC still have time to submit their FAFSA.

“Students can go online to submit their FAFSA, or they can visit our office, and we can personally assist students filling out the application and answer any questions they or their parents may have,” said Castillo-Medellin.

For more information about financial aid at TSC, visit the college’s financial aid office at the Oliveira Student Services Center, or call (956) 295-3620, or email financialaid@tsc.edu.

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