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Avoiding college financial aid scams

A picture of dollar bills scattered across a table

While prospective college students await their acceptance letters, they're also thinking about financial aid.

Some companies offer scholarship opportunities or help finding aid for a fee.

But, Better Business bureau regional director Sydney Waters says companies that guarantee results can seem like a dream come true -- but they could be the setup for a scam. She says some companies use a fake scholarship application to steal sensitive information.

"Anything that could capture your personal information should definitely be a red-flag for you when applying for money to put towards your college or trade school."

To avoid getting scammed, her advice is to start by filling out the FAFSA form, then discuss options with your school guidance counselor and get references from people in your community.

Waters says you can investigate any financial aid company you may consider using by checking their BBB Business Profile at bbb.org.

The BBB offers a Student of Ethics scholarship, which is free to apply for. The deadline to apply is May 4.

As a news producer and news anchor on All Things Considered, Brad provides the listeners with a recap of the day's top local and state news as well as breaking news at any given time. Contact WSIU Radio at 618-453-6101 or email wsiunews@wsiu.org
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