Las Vegas, N.M. – High school seniors can apply to Highlands University, be admitted and get help with financial aid at HU Day Feb. 27.

The event for the future Highlands Class of 2020 and their parents is from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. in the Student Union Ballroom at 800 University Ave.

Free lunch, campus tours by student ambassadors and Highlands gear are also part of HU Day.

“The transition to college is an exciting chapter in your life, and New Mexico Highlands University is here to make your personal and professional aspirations a reality,” said Edward Martínez, vice president of strategic enrollment management.

Since early February, Highlands has reached out to high school seniors and their parents to invite them to campus for HU Day.

“Our goal as a university is to offer the best possible service to New Mexico high school students by making the admissions and financial aid process as easy as possible,” said Benito Pacheco, director of the Office of Academic Support. “On HU Day we will be here to help however we can with everything from being admitted if you still need to do that to completing your Free Application for Federal Student Aid or FAFSA,” Pacheco said.

He said completing the FAFSA is the first step in helping pay for college.

“March 1 is the Highlands priority deadline for completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid,” said Eileen Sedillo, director of the Office of Financial Aid. “March 1 is also the Highlands priority deadline for completing the Highlands admission process for freshman scholarship awards.”

Sedillo said applying by the March 1 timeline means graduating high school seniors will be considered for certain federal grants and work study funds that are limited.

“If you don’t meet the March 1 priority timeline, you should still submit your FAFSA as soon as possible to be considered for the federal Pell grant and certain federal student loans,” Sedillo said.

She said that every year thousands of dollars of federal financial aid for college students goes unclaimed in New Mexico.

“We want our Highlands students to receive all the aid they are eligible for. The financial aid process can be stressful and intimidating. We’re here for you, and want to make it as pain free as possible by providing the resources to help navigate the process,” Sedillo said.

She encouraged students and their parents to come to HU Day with the information the FAFSA application asks for:

  • Your federal student aid ID (if you have one)
  • Your Social Security numbers
  • Your driver’s licenses
  • Completed 2015 tax forms, if you have them, or your W2s to help with estimating income
  • Records of untaxed income (if applicable)
  • Bank statements and records of investments (if applicable)

The U.S. Department of Education website for student aid and FAFSA is

Sedillo said Highlands will begin mailing financial aid award letters beginning in early April.

For more information about HU Day, call the Office of Academic Support at 505-454-3188 or the Office of Recruitment at 505-454-3593.