INA, Ill. (September 6, 2022) — Paying for college is an area of concern for many students and parents across the nation. Parents cite that one of the biggest worries when completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is that it is long and complicated. They fear they will make a mistake and jeopardize the student's potential to get student aid. 

"Students and parents hesitate to start the FAFSA believing it is a long and difficult process," said Rend Lake College's Director of Institutional Research and Compliance, Amy Epplin. "They are fearful they will make a mistake with major consequences and not realize that we can help them fix their mistakes without penalty. Students also feel they are inconveniencing the staff when asking for help. With our experience, we can walk them through the application faster than they can read the directions and answer their questions and concerns."

Rend Lake College aims to ease this concern by bringing its financial aid experts to area high schools. 

Parents and students of the high school district are invited to attend FAFSA workshops to help complete the form with confidence that it is being completed correctly. 

"When going to the high schools, we hope to provide convenience in being in their hometown," Epplin stated. "We provide a list of documents for the students and parents to bring in hopes we can finish the FASFA that evening and have one less worry while planning for college."

Parents and students planning on attending need to bring the following documents with them: 

  • Parent and Student FSA IDs, if already generated, if not, advisement will assist in creating them. 
  • Parent and, if applicable, student 2021 Federal Income Tax Forms
  • Parent and Student
    • Email Addresses
    • Social Security Numbers
    • Phone Numbers
    • Dates of Birth
    • Marital Status
    • Current Savings/checking account balances

The workshops will take place on the following dates: 

Presentations at Community High Schools

The official application start date is October 1. During the following presentations at local high schools, students and parents will learn about FAFSA filing, how to apply for scholarships, and answer any questions that may come up. 

September 7, 2022 – Pinckneyville, 6:30 pm
September 20, 2022 – Waltonville 6 pm
September 27, 2022 – Mt. Vernon, 6:30 pm

2022 FASFA Completions at Community High Schools

The following presentations will help you complete the FAFSA form in less than an hour using experts from Rend Lake College's Academic Advisement Team. They will also show students how to apply for scholarships and answer questions related to college.

October 3, 2022 - Waltonville, 10 am -11:30 am
October 3, 2022 – Hamilton County, 5 pm
October 3, 2022 – Wayne City, 5 pm
October 4, 2022 – Mt. Vernon, 2:30 pm – 6:30 pm
October 5, 2022 – Woodlawn, 6 pm
October 12, 2022 – Pinckneyville, 5:30 om
October 17, 2022 – Zeigler-Royalton, 8:15 am - 11:15 am
October 18, 2022 – Sesser, 12 pm - 3:30 pm
October 18, 2022 – Benton, 6:30 pm
October 19, 2022 – Thompsonville, 3:15 pm – 6 pm
October 24, 2022 – Weber, 5 pm
October 25, 2022 – Christopher, 3:30 pm

4 FAFSA Workshop FAQs

  1. I don't think I will qualify for FAFSA, should I still apply?
    • Absolutely! Even if you think you may not qualify, or you can afford college without FAFSA, it is a good idea to see what options may be available. 
  2. Does filling out FAFSA mean taking on student debt?
    • No. You should definitely file the FAFSA form. Students can qualify for federal grants, federal work-study, and college grants. By filling out the FAFSA, you can be offered federal student loans, but it’s your decision if you take those loans or not.
  3. How long does it take to complete the form? 
    • With help from our experts, many can get the form completed in well under an hour. 
  4. Does completing the FAFSA at an RLC workshop mean I have to go to RLC? 
    • No. While we would love for you to come to our college, we aim to help you get to the college of your choice.

If you have questions regarding these events, please contact

Rend Lake College Financial Aid Team at 618-437-5321 Ext. 1385

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