June 30, 2009 | | 1 Comment President Obama's administration is planning on simplifying the federal college aid form. It currently consists of 153 questions, which many families give up on before finishing. President Obama is seeking to make the application more user-friendly so more students may attend higher education. Arne Duncan, Education Secretary announced the changes last Wednesday. They are trying new avenues, in order to boost college enrollment among low and middle income students. Duncan said "We need to educate our way to a better economy." The new form will make the process easier for students and families applying for federal financial aid. Due to the economic downturn, many students and their families are seeking financial aid. After the recession the number of applications increased 12 percent to more than 16 million. In 2007, 58 percent of college undergraduates applied for aid, and 47 percent received it. Due to the high demand and the fact President Obama wants more people applying; the administration is trying to shorten the online Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). There will be two-thirds fewer screens to fill out. There will also be a Web application where families can access their tax data already sent to the IRS. This tax information will help families answer the questions on the form. Paperwork shouldn't stand between students and a college degree. The administration has a goal set and that is to increase the Pell Grants for low-income students by 75 percent over the next ten years. There is money out there for education and it just got easier. Because of the stimulus, over $17 billion has been designated for Pell Grants. The Federal Perkins Loan Program will also increase to $6 billion in loans every year over the next decade. There has never been a better time to get an education so sign up today and improve your life.