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Nicolet College - Stimulus money flows to Nicolet students in form of increased financial aid


Stimulus money flows to Nicolet
students in form of increased financial aid


More financial aid is now available to students attending Nicolet College thanks to stimulus money flowing to the area from the federal and state governments, said Bill Peshel, Nicolet College director of financial aid.

The feds increased Pell Grant limits by $619 for the upcoming school year to a maximum of $5,350 a year, Peshel said. And the state of Wisconsin is expected to soon follow suit by increasing Wisconsin Higher Education grants. The current maximum is $1,100 a year. This is expected to increase by at least a couple hundred dollars a year.

"Everyday we see bright, hard working students struggling to make ends meet and stay in school," Peshel said. "Any increase in financial aid - especially an increase this significant - is great news. It helps students stay in school, graduate, and eventually go on to have productive careers."

New this year on the federal financial aid application, known as FAFSA, is a special provision for individuals attending college who have been laid off or are the dependent child of a parent who has been laid off.

"If a student meets this dislocated worker provision, there is a very good chance that they will receive the maximum amount of federal aid," Peshel explained. This also applies to self-employed individuals who are now unemployed due to the economy; and also displaced homemakers.

The first step to applying for financial aid, which is done entirely online, is to visit the federal application website at www.fafsa.ed.gov. Instructions on how to complete the application are available at this site. The staff in Nicolet's Financial Aid Department are also available to help, Peshel added. The number for that department is (715) 365-4423 or 1-800-544-3039, ext. 4423.

Along with increased financial aid, the federal stimulus package will also provide the college with more funding for the college's work/study program, which allows the college to hire students to work in various departments on campus.

"Whenever possible we try to match up the job to the student's field of study," Peshel explained. "So not only are they getting paid, they are also getting real-world work experience that they can put on a resume to help them land that first job after they graduate."