Williamson Daily News

West Virginia has set a statewide goal of having 63 percent of students complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid forms by April 15.

Counselors and GEAR UP staff at Mingo Central High School and Tug Valley High School have hosted several financial aid workshops since October to help students with this important step toward post-secondary education. As of March 8, both schools had exceeded the statewide goal of 63 percent. Currently, Mingo Central has a 67 percent FAFSA completion rate and Tug Valley has a 69 percent FAFSA completion rate.

Billions of dollars in federal grant money go unclaimed each year. Anyone needing assistance filling out the FAFSA or with financial aid questions may contact Christine Harmon or Andrea Gilman at Mingo Central High School and Candace Fletcher or Bryna Jewell at Tug Valley High School.

Financial aid is viewed as a critical part of helping students go to college. West Virginia's Climb initiative is working to equip 60 percent of the state's workforce with a formal education credential beyond high school by the year 2030. That means nearly doubling the percentage of working-age West Virginians with a post-secondary credential in a little more than a decade. To learn more about the West Virginia Climb initiative, visit wvclimb.com.