If you have a college-aged student in your family, you are probably thankful to live in the Lone Star State. After all, according to reporting from U.S. News and World Report, in-state tuition at UT-Austin is about $30,000 less per year than out-of-state tuition.
Still, you may need some financial assistance to help your son or daughter achieve his or her educational goals. The timely completion of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid allows your child to compete for billions of dollars in government-subsidized loans, grants and work-study funds.
No more drug-related suspensions
Until recently, the U.S. Department of Education considered drug convictions when awarding federal financial aid. Specifically, if aid recipients had drug convictions during their award periods, the DOE immediately suspended federal academic assistance. This does not happen anymore, fortunately.
One more step
While the DOE says it no longer considers drug convictions when awarding federal financial aid, educational officials continue to inquire about drug convictions. Therefore, it is important for your child to answer all the questions on the FAFSA honestly. If your son or daughter has a drug conviction, he or she may have to provide additional details about it on a supplemental worksheet.
Not all good news
The DOE’s policy change applies only to federal dollars. If your child receives private scholarships or university financial assistance, a drug conviction may continue to be problematic. Likewise, drug-related convictions can be catastrophic for future employment, as many employers perform background checks.
Ultimately, even though your child is likely to continue to receive subsidized financial aid regardless of a drug conviction, it is advisable to explore all possible defenses to any drug charges he or she is currently facing.