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BRHS Wins Hustle Award!!!
Posted On:
Sunday, August 12, 2018

OUR VIEW: Hats off to BRHS for emphasizing FAFSA

Twice this year, Benjamin Russell High School has been recognized by the organization Alabama Possible and its Cash for College Alabama campaign for showing growth in the number of senior students completing the FAFSA application for college financial aid.

Alabama Possible recognized BRHS in January with its “Best Hustle” award for showing significant growth among seniors completing the FAFSA during an early window. Earlier this month, the group again honored Benjamin Russell for having one of the highest FAFSA completion rates in the state, with 71 percent of the BRHS Class of 2018 having finished the application.

At the high school, counselor Richard Burton sits down with the senior class about the FAFSA and how beneficial financial aid can be in order to make college more affordable. He and financial aid representatives from Central Alabama Community College also speak to students and their parents during Financial Aid Night in October.

“Completing the FAFSA opens more doors to be able to pay for college,” Burton said. “It shows when the students are making an investment in their future, they are more able to reap the benefits.”

Thanks to the emphasis placed on this, the students at Benjamin Russell have been paying attention and working to reach those avenues of college funding. This year’s total of 71 percent completion is a jump from last year’s 56 percent, suggesting the Class of 2018 may be in line to set another financial aid record at the high school, breaking last year’s record of more than $5 million in scholarships given to the Class of 2017.

As with many other things we’ve talked about in the recent past, this achievement may not be measured on any standardized test, but still shows the staff at Benjamin Russell cares about their students’ futures, wanting them to succeed at whatever they choose to do. Whether these students go on to earn a degree from a prestigious four-year institution or a technical certification from CACC or Southern Union, having a completed FAFSA application gives them one more opportunity to have the financial aid necessary to complete this endeavor.

Our hats are off to the staff at Benjamin Russell for encouraging the seniors in this way, helping them be much more prepared to take that next step after graduation.

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