Best Hustle Award

Dadeville High School was honored with the Best Hustle Award from Alabama Possible for successfully improving its early Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) completion by at least 10 percent from Oct.1 to Dec. 1. Pictured from left are Anna Stephens, guidance counselor Mona Howard and Max McClendon.

Dadeville seniors proved they had the best haste this fall with scholarship applications. 

Dadeville was one of 120 schools honored by nonprofit Alabama Possible for improving its early Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) between Oct. 1 and Dec. 1 with the “Best Hustle Award.” Dadeville increased its early application by 132% and is the only school in the county to receive the award.

“This is a very motivated class,” guidance counselor Mona Howard said.

Howard meets with the seniors every year to announce when FAFSA applications are open and offers help. It’s important to apply for FAFSA early to receive more money because it runs on a first-come, first-serve basis.

“If you complete (the application) first, then you’ll be sure to get it,” Howard said. “A lot of scholarships require that you complete it before you complete the scholarship (applications).”

A lot of people who qualify for FAFSA don’t apply, according to Howard.

Anna Stephens finished FAFSA early to be eligible for Merritt and academic scholarships and to get housing sooner at the University of Alabama.

“It was easier for me (to not have) to worry about it next semester when everybody else is trying to apply for housing and whatnot,” Stephens said.

Max McClendon applied to get accepted into a college such as Southern Union State Community College earlier. McClendon said applying early was a weight off his shoulders.

“For me I found out how stressful it actually was (to apply),”McClendon said. “It was probably one of the most stressful things I’ve done.”

About 75% of Dadeville seniors apply for college, according to Howard, and there are 62 students in the class of 2020. McClendon said a lot of his classmates want to attend college.

“I like for our school to be recognized for anything,” McClendon said.