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The University of St. Thomas on Tuesday announced that it will give new students more time to decide if they want to attend, joining a growing number of Minnesota schools that are extending their decision deadlines in response to FAFSA delays.

"Given the delays we are experiencing in getting FAFSA results, we want to acknowledge for families that we know that financial considerations play a big part in their decision process and we want to provide them time to receive awards, review details and work through any questions," Kristen Hatfield, director of admissions, said in a statement. "We believe extending this deadline relieves the pressure associated with the traditional May 1 deposit date."

The new deadline will be June 1.

The University of Minnesota, Augsburg University, Gustavus Adolphus College, and the College of Saint Benedict and Saint John's University also announced extensions last week.

The announcements came in response to a series of FAFSA delays that will leave prospective college students across the nation with less time to compare competing financial aid offers.

In a typical year, nearly 18 million Americans — including about 225,000 Minnesotans — fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, a form overseen by the U.S. Department of Education that is used to determine which government loans and grants students should receive. Students can elect to share their information with colleges, which can then download the data and use it to determine if people are eligible for aid they offer as well.

But the U.S. Department of Education announced Jan. 30 that schools won't be able to access that information until March — about six weeks later than expected.