Frank, currently trending in the latest startup news is all ready to help students with their financial aid.
Applying to college is hard enough without the even trickier minefield of financial aid. The basic government form, the dreaded FAFSA, asks for information high-school students might not know about their families’ financial lives. Even parents filling financial aid forms out on their children’s behalf can get discouraged and abandon the process partway through.
That’s where a new startup called Frank comes in. The company will get you a basic financial aid estimate through its website within minutes and then negotiate your financial aid offer to make sure you’re getting every last dollar of federal, state, and institutional financial aid. As long as U.S. higher educational policy still requires some major fixes, Javice thinks a for-profit company like Frank can be a more immediate solution for students and families. Javice founded Frank after first working on a startup that dealt with student lending on the banks’ side of things. While working on that project, she found that consumers’ experiences with student loans and scholarships was a better opportunity for the kind of startup she wanted to run.
Since launching in March, Frank has helped 80,000 students access $2.8 billion in financial aid. Getting a FAFSA estimate through Frank is free. Students can also pay $500 for the startup to renegotiate your financial aid award, a separate service. That $500 is returned if you don’t get at least that much off your tuition.
To get you a financial aid award estimate in minutes, Frank takes the 110 questions the government asks students and chooses the 30 percent that it can tell are most relevant to each user. The program mines its data from past users to figure out which questions to choose.
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