"The acronym 'FAFSA' trended on social media Friday as some students who recently completed the Free Application for Federal Student Aid worried — incorrectly — that filling out the form had made them eligible to be drafted into the military," MarketWatch reports.
"Interest in the topic surged after a U.S. drone strike ordered by President Trump killed Iranian military leader Qassem Soleimani, leading to fears of possible military conflict with Iran.
One alarmed observer wrote on Twitter" 'FYI: If any of you filled out a FAFSA form to apply for student loans, you are registered in the selective service. That’s pretty damn near every millenial and Gen Zer.' Another wondered why the U.S. has an all-volunteer military if 'they trick you into Selective Service System on #FAFSA.'
Those concerns were misplaced: With a few exceptions, males in the U.S. must register with the Selective Service when they turn 18 regardless of whether they fill out the FAFSA. That’s been the law of the land since 1917. Failing to register for Selective Service is a felony punishable by a fine of up to $250,000 or a prison term of up to five years, according to the Selective Service website. But the U.S. hasn’t drafted people into the military since 1973, when the Vietnam War was ending.
'That’s very alarming that people are thinking they’re going to be drafted if they filled out a FAFSA,' said Karen McCarthy, the director of policy analysis for the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (NASFAA), a nonprofit that advocates for increased student access to college. 'Filling out a FAFSA doesn’t register anybody for selective service.'"
NASFAA's "Notable Headlines" section highlights media coverage of financial aid to help members stay up to date with the latest news. Articles included under the notable headlines section are not written by NASFAA, but rather by external sources. Inclusion in Today's News does not imply endorsement of the material or guarantee the accuracy of information presented.
Publication Date: 1/6/2020