LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- If you want federal financial help to go to college, now is the time to do something about it.

On Oct. 1, you can begin applying for the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA. On Monday, Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer wanted that message to get out, especially to those who come from families where no one has ever gone to college and think they can't either.

He delivered that message from the brand new home of KentuckianaWorks College Access Center, which is celebrating it's 40th anniversary this year of helping bring people out of poverty and on a track to college by offering free services like applying to colleges, searching for scholarships and applying for FAFSA.

"The staff here at the College Access Center can help you complete the form and make sure it's filed correctly ... giving you the best chance at getting the financial support that can be so critically to affording college," Fischer said.

Those attending Monday's event heard some incredible success stories, like one from Mark Jones, who began going to the College Access Center as a high school sophomore, graduated top of his class with not only a diploma but an associates degree from JCTC and now is heading to the University of Louisville on a full-ride scholarship.

Another speaker was Richard Myers, who dropped out of high school then later went to the College Access Center, which helped get him into JCTC.

"I graduated there [and] was able to transfer with top honors and a full scholarship to Kentucky State University," Myers said. "It was just one blessing after another. There was always somebody to open the door for you."

The College Access Center has helped nearly 40,000 people in the past decade. Most came from lower-income families and the overwhelming majority were the first in their family to go to college.

The new headquarters is in the Arstace Building at 323 West Broadway next to the Brown Theater.

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