College Resources for Juniors and Seniors

Federal Financial Aid
Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)
Application Opens: October 1
Application Deadline: March 2
This link is the correct government website to use to apply for financial aid.  Make sure to submit your application by the deadline to qualify for all financial aid such as grants and/or student loans.  This application is necessary in order to receive financial aid through your school of choice. 
You may receive offers for loans in two different forms: subsidized and unsubsidized.  Acquire an understanding of the difference between the two types BEFORE accepting the loans.  Click on the following link for more information:
CA Public University Applications
Cal State University (CSU) Application
Application Opens: October 1
Application Deadline: November 30
University of California (UC) Application
Application Opens: November 1
Application Deadline: November 30
Private University Application
The Common Application (Common App)
Applications Open: August 1
Application Deadlines: Dates Vary (see below)
The Common Application, or Common App, is an application that is used by most private universities in the country.  Unlike the Cal State and UC Applications, The Common App is not one application that is submitted for all schools.  Due to the large number of universities that use this form, each school has its own application and there are a variety of deadlines.  Be sure to make note of the various deadlines for EACH school that you intend to apply to.  Also, be sure to make note of the various documents that are required by each university as they will vary.
Financial Aid from Colleges
Most schools offer their own grants and scholarships once you have been accepted.  Make sure to go onto the school website and search for the grants or scholarships that are offered directly through the school.  Some of them may require a short essay with the application.  This may sound like too much work, but it is worth it!  Numerous scholarships and grants go undistributed because students are not willing to write a short essay for free money*.
*Never pay for an application for a scholarship or grant.  If the application prompts you to pay, delete all of your information as it is most likely a scam.