Accessing Federal Student Aid for Newcomer Youth and Adults: The Latest Guidance from the U.S. Department of Education

This webinar is presented by Switchboard, a one-stop shop for refugee service providers in the United States. Learn more about Switchboard at

Hosted on March 22, 2023, the training was delivered by Lindsay Dusard, PhD student at the Graduate School of Education at the University of Pennsylvania and Aaron Washington; Management and Program Analyst in the Office of Postsecondary Education (OPE) at the U.S. Department of Education.

Navigating federal student aid has always been a challenge, particularly for refugees, asylees, and other humanitarian immigrants. The recent humanitarian parolee programs only contribute to the complexity. This webinar will build upon Switchboard’s archived webinar The Golden Ticket: Accessing Financial Aid for Refugee Youth and Adults by reviewing the basics of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) while also interpreting the latest guidance on Afghan, Ukrainian, Cuban, Haitian, Venezuelan, and Nicaraguan newcomers’ eligibility. An updated version of the toolkit Accessing Federal Student Aid for Refugee Youth and Adults will accompany the webinar and can be found on this resource page. 

After participating in this 90-minute session, you will be able to:

– Summarize the purpose and process of submitting the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)
– Identify common obstacles to obtaining federal financial aid and strategies for overcoming them
– Determine which legal statuses currently qualify as eligible noncitizens for Federal Student Aid purposes
– Locate and share additional resources for accessing funding for postsecondary education and/or career pathway programs