On 2/5 in Alexandria, Va., Michelle Obama spoke with a group of high school students and told them not to let financial worries stop them from getting a college education. The first lady encouraged the students to “fill out the forms” and utilize federal student aid in achieving higher education.
With the deadline approaching to fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), Mrs. Obama spoke at T.C. Williams high school and told students to “not leave money on the table.” She finds that many students don’t complete this very easy first step in continuing education and walk away from college educations because they assume they won’t be able to afford it. Mrs. Obama has been very active in helping the United States hold the world’s highest percentage of college graduates by 2020.
The First Lady and secretary of education, Arne Duncan, walked around the room after speaking and met with students individually about their college plans and the FAFSA. The two women helped students with the federal financial aid website on laptops at the event.
The Obama administration has shortened the online form, along with several other changes, cutting the completion time to about 21 minutes, or one-fifth of the time it would have taken four years ago, the department said.
Michelle Obama’s speech came the day after President Obama announced a commitment of more than $750 million from private business leaders to improve technology at schools.