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we are here with Sean Logan director of College counseling at Phillips Academy Sean one thing that students often ask themselves is should I be thinking about financial aid during the college search process or is this something that doesn't really come until the very end once I'm making my decision the financial aid piece is is got to be a you know right up front and then in the research process it's a very important piece to consider you know a couple things with need-based aid for most families the financial aid process is a scary process you should never be afraid of asking if you know what you would consider a stupid question I've been doing this for 25 years I still get confused on how schools use their terms so if you need things to define for you ask the right questions until you get your questions answered applying for financial aid by their deadlines is critical many schools will exhaust their financial aid budget you know as they as they send out all their admission letters so if you get into a school and then decide okay I'm admitted now I'm gonna submit my financial aid paperwork they may not have any money left so financial aid deadlines are critically important and just in this research process a couple of words that you're gonna hear and things to think about there's there's two terms you're gonna hear a lot one of those terms is need-blind a school might be need-blind in admissions process or a school might be need aware in the admissions process need-blind typically means that you will be admitted to the school regardless of whether or not you're applying for aid so the school does not take into account if you're applying for aid or not they're admitting you based on other criteria the term need aware means that financial aid may be a consideration in the admission process so a school may take into account that you that you need financial aid or that you don't need financial aid in the admissions process so I guess it sounds like if you have two students who are both sort of on the edge of getting in or not getting into a school and that school is need aware then they may preference a student who doesn't need the financial help versus a student who does but certainly if you're a competitive applicant then whether or not you need financial help the student the school won't the what we call won't care about that at all right great and one thing that I've oftentimes heard is that certain schools do meet 100% of other schools don't meet 100% of need how does that sort of factor in in general and connect with me blind versus need away right so if you're looking at information online or have the opportunity to visit a school that's a great question to ask a financial aid officer do you meet a hundred percent of demonstrated need and what that means is based on the FAFSA and the profile that you'll probably submit to that school one or both of those documents those documents will say that the family has a contribution amount the college will meet the rest of your need based off of that but quite frankly there's you know there's not a lot of schools that that that meet a hundred percent of demonstrated need shown can you give me some examples of schools that are in that sweet spot so they are need-blind they're not gonna take into account my family's financial circumstances when you know deciding whether to admit me or not but once I'm in they they commit to meeting 100 percent of my needs so they'll make sure that college is affordable for my family sure so you know one of the ways that this you know manifests itself is the schools that have great endowments you know typically tend to use a chunk of that endowment towards really good financial aid packages so schools like Stanford University Wellesley College Williams College these places that have very good endowments and put a lot of money towards financial aid fit that definition and use their resources that way so again it's a really great combination when a school says we're need-blind you we meet 100% of your demonstrated need but there are many other schools that will meet a hundred percent of your demonstrated need even though it's not a guarantee they give to all students the bottom line here is the better student you are the stronger program you take the better grades you get the better financial aid packages you're going to be at you know you can avail yourself of