LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - On Wednesday, thousands of your calls were answered during the College for Texans phone bank. The telethon focused on one main goal, helping families afford college.
The phones started ringing non-stop once NewsChannel 11's Abner Euresti went on air Wednesday during NewsChannel 11 at 5. "I took calls from Muleshoe to Jayton to Brownfield to Littlefield, a lot from the Lubbock area. Individuals were very interesting in finding out what opportunities were available for them through financial aid," said Janie Landin Ramirez, director of Closing the Gaps Council.
Ramirez was in Austin for the phone bank and says more than 2,000 calls were taken. "We had a lot of those types of calls where people were asking ‘what if I don't even qualify for financial aid?' The free grants, well, you still need to fill out a financial aid application because (if not) you are eliminating yourself from opportunities at the school that you applied to," said Ramirez.
Ramirez says throughout the state of Texas 55 percent of high school graduates go on to further their education, but here on the South Plains the number is lower. "Only 47 percent of students go on to some form of higher education and at that rate we are not going to meet the demands of the job market out there," said Ramirez.
That's why she says the telethon is so important to let people know going to college is an option. "February is typically financial aid awareness month and they get a lot of financial aid applications but they are use to that. You go online and you summit it and the school that you want to receive your information could have it as early as ten days out," said Ramirez.
If you weren't able to call in on Wednesday, don't worry, you can still get your college financial aid questions answered. "People can call in Monday through Friday, during business hours. After the telethon it will just be during business hours, but you can call that number to get assistance with your financial aid application," said Ramirez.
The number for free financial aid help is 1-888-311-8881 or visit the College for Texans website by clicking here.
The Closing the Gaps Council is available for one-on-one help you can find more information at their website by clicking here.