College Prep Seminar in Harlingen

Applying for college and financial aid can be intimidating and more than 100 families showed up to a college preparation workshop Thursday to make the process easier.

"I basically want to see what they have to offer because it is really important to me for him to get that education," said Rachel Webb, a HCISD parent.

Harlingen Consolidated Independent School District Parental Involvement hosted the classes to tell students and parents what to expect.

Students learned how to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA.The FAFSA determines a student's eligibility for federal and state financial aid programs.The priority deadline to submit the FAFSA is April 1.

"It's good for people who are freshman, said Lovie Montano, a HCISD student. They should really come to these presentations because they'll find out ways that I didn't know; I just found out my senior year."

More than $4 billion are available in the form of grants, scholarships, low-interest student loans and work study programs.Helpful seminars pave the way for students to receive that financial aid, but the time to act is now.Some financial aid is first come first serve.Think of it as a buffet and the later you apply the slimmer the pickings.

We really didn't know that there is a lot of money out there, said HCISD student Giovanni Lucio. Now that we know, we are definitely going to sign up for it."

HCISD student J.B. Herrera offered advice to students who are still considering applying for financial aid.

"Just get it over with because I could have done it earlier in the school year and I regret not doing it earlier."UTPA, UTB-TSC and TSTC were just some of the schools on hand offering information on how to jump-start a higher education.

"It is possible. Si se puede, said Dr. Jose Luis Cavazos with HCISD Parental Involvement. We are very fortunate to have financial aid and universities that really care for our students."