Missouri's Department of Higher Education redesigned the state financial aid portal to allow students to estimate how the state's financial aid will directly apply to the amount each student will pay for college.

The Department launched two interactive online features on its Journey to College website this week to help students plan and pay for college. The Department redesigned its existing Student Financial Aid Portal, creating a complementary new Student Workspace. 

“Figuring out how to plan and pay for college can be confusing for students and families,” commissioner of higher education, Zora Mulligan, says. “These online tools will help students understand their financial aid options and start planning for their future sooner.” 

The State Financial Aid Portal is a secure student-based website that gives Missouri students an opportunity to learn more about their own state financial aid, including scholarships and grants, according the assistant commissioner of higher education, Becky Dunn. The portal has a new design, with new security and login features. It allows students to estimate their eligibility of state financial aid programs, set their top school choice, and see the state financial aid that has previously been awarded. 

The portal is designed for high school seniors, college students, and adults planning to enroll in college. For state aid that requires an application, students can now apply online, directly from the portal. It includes ACT, SAT and FAFSA information, as well as the application for the new Fast Track Workforce Incentive Grant. 

The complementary Student Workspace is a seamless transition from within the portal, but can also be accessed as a standalone tool, according to Dunn. It acts as an electronic portfolio for materials related to the college process. Folders are set up to organize and upload documents as students find their best fit for education after high school, apply for scholarships and other financial aid, and complete their journey through college. The workspace can be used by students as young as middle school. 

Once a student enters their senior year of high school, their workspace account can be connected to a portal account, giving them access to state financial aid applications. 

Both tools can be accessed from the homepage of the journeytocollege.mo.gov website.