Inspired by the challenges that our BridgeEdU On-Campus scholars faced in understanding the FAFSA process and funding their education (read more about that venture here), the BridgeEdU team decided to develop a comprehensive financial aid guide on a mobile platform that could be accessible to all students and their families. After months of research and development, the YesU mobile app launched in October of 2016 along with the updated FAFSA application. In fact, the first FAFSA for the 2017-2018 school year was completed using the YesU app!
Baltimore schools were the first to pilot the YesU mobile app for the 2016-2017 school year. BridgeEdU team member Ms. Juanita Bellamy spent six months introducing the app to seniors in pilot schools. Students downloaded YesU onto their phones and were guided through each mission to help them complete their FAFSA application and Maryland state aid applications.
The Baltimore pilots provided more than just feedback on YesU’s usability – they have shown us just how impactful YesU can be for students. See below for some key wins:
- Increased Pell grant eligibility for 100 Baltimore students by walking them through the FAFSA
- Guided over 50 students through the FAFSA verification process
- Prevented two students from submitting their FAFSA for the wrong year
- Introduced students at ten high schools to six Maryland state aid programs
- Inspired two students to enroll in colleges they thought they couldn’t afford
- Acclimated over 50 sets of parents to the financial aid process
These numbers are only a dent in the impact that YesU made for Baltimore City. Just take the word of one of our students!
“The YesU app directed everyone in the class to check their SAR. Everyone, except five had not done so and didn’t know we needed to. The result was life changing. My EFC had an asterisk and a C. I panicked at first until the app further explained how to address the issue. Now I can go home and show my mom what the App says without having to remember everything. Whew! I almost missed out on a lot of money!”
Stay tuned to our Get Inspired blog for more student success stories.
YesU is available to download on iTunes or Google Play today. To inquire about purchasing multiple licenses, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org