Going to college is undoubtedly one of the most exciting and fulfilling experiences that a person can go through in life. The flip side is that it can also be one of the most expensive too. With tuition fees seemingly rising up and up, higher than ever before, the dream of attending college can often fade. Many people think they are never going to be able to afford a higher education. The fact of the matter is that college, unless you are lucky enough to be awarded a full scholarship, is not cheap. This means the majority of hopeful students are forced to try to figure out ways of how exactly they are going to pay their fees and living expenses. Need some help? Here are some tips and hints for working to fund your own education.
No doubt you will fill out forms for FAFSA – Free Application for Federal student Aid – but there’s a really important add-on that shouldn’t be overlooked and that is the FWS – Federal Work Study Program. Simply check the box to be offered options for student employment. The jobs may be at your school or off campus, are part-time and pay at least minimum wage. They are also often connected to your major.
There are hundreds, if not thousands, of college scholarship programmes that you can research and apply for. Whether you are talented in sports or simply one of the best in your class academically, you may find that certain colleges will be willing to give you either a partial or free ride to attend their institution. You will probably have to write plenty of application essays and personal statements, but when the prize is potentially having all of your tuition fees covered, the work is definitely worth it.
There are also scholarships available in many niches you may never even have considered. Check out Niche or Askpetersen – apply for as many scholarships as you can, it will increase your chances significantly.
Some students make the decision to take a gap year between leaving school and starting college. A gap year is traditionally seen as a time to travel the world and enjoy yourself before the hard work starts. Some young people however, take it upon themselves to enter the world of work. They work to earn money rather than spend it on traveling and experiencing the world, money that can then be used for their higher education.
Living on campus can often be the most expensive option. Yes, it has benefits but if you need to save money there are alternatives. Choose a school close to home so you can stick with your parents (if you can stomach it ), find an apartment/house share or check out the opportunities for being a resident advisor in a freshman dorm.
So it’s smaller scale than the likes of scholarship applications, but it can still save you some much-needed cash. Most college courses have a required reading list filled with textbooks, some of which can be really expensive if purchased brand new. Don’t buy new. Browse the second-hand sections of book shops and online stores. Buying second hand textbooks not only saves money, but it can also benefit your studies too, as very often handwritten notes from previous students will adorn the pages.
This is a practical and important tip to take with you to college. Rather than spending lots of money each day buying fast food and processed meals, you should teach yourself to cook.This new-found skill have a positive impact on your health. It will also stop you from ordering takeout and going to restaurants so often, therefore saving another huge chunk of money. You would be surprised at just how well you can spread a small budget when buying fresh foods to cook at home.