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Coronavirus has changed college admissions, resources available

Posted at 4:22 AM, May 06, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-06 11:02:51-04

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — Because of the pandemic, seniors who looked forward to the final stretch of their high school years are missing out on experiences many of us looked forward to during our time in school. For those pursuing college this fall, more change is taking place.

Many families have been financially hit hard by COVID-19, leaving students wondering if college is even a possibility. Deciding which college to go to can always be tough but this year there's a lot more help.


No prom, and graduation ceremonies on hold. Seniors are coping with a sense of loss.

"I think it's really disappointing," said Aimee Zakaryan. "For life to kind of just, like out of the blue, get on hold for everyone."

Zakaryan is also experiencing another challenge -- picking the right college.

"I actually did sign up for virtual tours with different schools after like a month or so after COVID. They started creating virtual tour experiences."

Herbie Walker of Walker College Consultants says virtual tours is just the start. Graduating seniors should expect more changes.

"There are a lot of delays going on right now, and that delay can either be on your admissions decision or financial aid because so many offices have gone remote," said Walker.

The traditional college decision deadline has been May 1, but with the coronavirus shutting down campuses, many colleges moved their deadlines.

UNLV extended its fall application deadline to July 1. UNR is now June 1. Others kept their May 1 deadline but if you need more time to decide, Walker says reach out to the college.

"Historically, it wasn't too difficult to ask for an extra 10-15 days to re evaluate your decision and that could be because of finances. That could be because you're waiting on one other college to hear from."

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For students who initially didn't qualify for financial aid, Walker says, "There are colleges that have been giving out a little bit more money."

"I have a couple of clients who have been impacted by COVID-19 and have been allowed to appeal the money that they've been offered so they can get more," he added.

The future may seem unclear but Aimee is encouraging all seniors to stay positive. "Keep your head up high and really take advantage of all the tools and resources."

Walker says if you now need more aid to attend your dream school, be prepared to show documentation of how your finances have changed.

Also keep an eye out for new scholarships. When 13 Action News checked in with universities and colleges the valley, CSN said it will have more scholarships available this fall semester so don't forget to check with your school.