COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - When those college bills come in, be prepared for sticker shock---at least that's the word from a USA Today report on tuition.
But the Muscogee County School District is taking steps to keep parents from being caught off guard.
Director of Communications Valerie Fuller said to make sure parents are prepared, they can attend one of two workshops this month called "Funds for College."
"The federal application for student aid is actually federal funds... but there are other scholarship opportunities, local opportunities, all kinds of opportunities that students may not be aware of or their parents," stated Fuller.
Completing a FAFSA or free federal application for student aid is the first step toward applying for most federal, state and college provided financial aid.
"For those who have no knowledge of the process or don't have a computer, or are not familiar with FAFSA we will have people there on site to walk them through the process," Fuller said.
We caught up with some students from Shaw High School who are already ahead of the game. They took advantage of an opportunity to get familiar with the process at their schools "Georgia Apply to College Day" back in November.
"It will help with the cost so I don't have to pay that much back," explained Shaw High School senior Lyndon Willis.
"You already have an idea of how to apply you know it's just a step forward," recalled junior Hayley Robinson.
We found a tuition calculator online. You can key in the name of your desired school or just put in the perspective state.
We looked up the University of Georgia.
The annual in-state tuition, fees, books and room and board for UGA is nearly $24,000 a year.
We're told parents should bring their last year's tax returns to the workshop.
The Funds for College workshop will be held tomorrow at Rigdon Road Elementary School computer lab--Thursday, January 9 & 16 from 5 to 6:30 p.m. Space is limited.