College is becoming one of the most important single steps you can take towards furthering your future. This is because college has almost become the norm in a great deal of jobs that traditionally required little to no education. College is quickly becoming the old high school, and jobs are requiring even more college than they ever did before. It is because of this, that it is important that everyone consider the possibility of attending college regardless of their situation.
Part I: The old fashioned way
What most people don’t realize about college is that it is much more accessible than it appears. The reality is that there is a way that everyone, regardless of their financial or personal status can go to college if they really want to go. It’s just a matter of how you go about it. While the majority of the benefits are available to the lower income individuals, there’s a great number of programs that are available to even the highest of income levels. Strangely, many students assume that their parents simply make too much money and don’t bother even looking for other options for paying for college outside of student loans.
Many of those that are in the upper middle class to upper class have a great deal of problems finding means of paying for college if they are unable to pay out of pocket for it. The major issue is that the government doesn’t really provide for the middle to upper class in terms of grants and loans. This is because the majority of the need is in the lower class and those are the people that the government is most concerned with raising their standard of living. So of course it may leave out a great chunk of the population that really wants to go to college, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t any options available to those individuals. It is simply a matter of doing a bit of research.
One of the main ways to go to college if you make too much money is to simply apply for a student loan. These loans don’t have to be paid back until 6 months after you graduate and generally have low interest rates attached to them. You can get these loans from a wide variety of banks, but some of the more popular include NelNet, Wachovia, and Wells Fargo. Generally you can easily qualify regardless of your credit history for loans that will cover all of your educational needs. Since the government will typically back education loans many banks are willing to take on these loans as their risk of loss is greatly minimized if not covered completely. This of course is becoming increasingly important with tough financial times for banks.
Part II: Scholarships
If a student wants to get free money on the other hand, then they are going to have to go about getting it in a slightly different manner. To get free money you aren’t going to be able to qualify for federal grants, so you’ll want to apply for scholarships. There are a variety of different scholarships that you can apply for with a lot of different requirements for each one. Some scholarships can be obtained for sports, for academics, for affiliations, race, background, religion, etc. There are so many different scholarships available, most that require only an application or simple essay. The hard part for most people is trying to find these scholarships, but in reality, they are incredibly easy to locate.
In order to find scholarships that are available, go to:
But if you need more advice about scholarships and help applying for and receiving them, then it is suggested that you try out:
By taking advantage of these resources and taking the time to fill out the applications you could find that you are eligible for a great deal of different scholarships that really don’t require all that much effort. Most of these scholarships only require a 1,000 or less word essay, which you could use on multiple scholarship applications, since many of them ask for the same essay. While you aren’t going to win all of the scholarships, you generally aren’t going to be competing with too many people on many of them, so your chances for winning something is relatively good if you write well and you submit to several scholarships. Just keep in mind that the more that you submit to the better off you will be and the higher the chances of you obtaining at least one scholarship will be.
It is important to take the time to try and find some of the more obscure scholarships. The ones that aren’t getting as heavily applied to are going to be ones that are more easily won. By applying to these types of scholarships the odds of receiving several of them may be higher than attempting to compete with potentially thousands of applicants on the most popular well known scholarships. However, even with these odds they should be considered as options and a student should make an attempt to apply to as many of them as humanly possible in order to create better odds of obtaining one or more.
Part III: Work Study
Another option for those looking to go to college is to go about it through a variety of different work study programs that are available. These programs are often times supported by the government and allow a student to work off part of their debt. This could be provided through the college itself, through a government sponsored program, or even through the military. Typically these programs require a student to work in their community or in some other manner in order to pay off their debt. Within many colleges students are able to work inside of the school in exchange for tuition. While the reimbursement rate isn’t all that great it is far better than paying the debt and often times the work requirements are pretty laid back to allow for studying during work hours.
One of the best ways to pay for schooling through a work study program is with the military. The military will often times allow a student to go through college without working in exchange for a commitment to military service for a period of time after they graduate. Since the student would have a degree the military would typically pay a larger salary to the student and give them higher rank and a job in their field of study when possible. Not only will the student come out of college with a job, but they’ll obtain experience in their career of choice, and will have no student loans to pay back. This is a huge advantage over most civilians that obtain jobs and are forced to pay back student loans over a decade or two.
By choosing a work study program a student is able to get out of student loan debt much faster and able to start realizing their earning potential much faster than they would if they would have simply taken on student loans. While most of these work study programs will only pay a percentage of the student loans the military will often times pay for the entire cost of college depending upon the cost of the school with other expenses taken care of as well.
PART IV: Final Thoughts
Many students may find that their options for reducing their overall financial burden when going to college can be quite limited, but with a little bit of effort and forward thinking there are ways to reduce that burden considerably if not completely. While there may not be the normal grants available from the government that the lower income applicants will get there are a variety of other ways for students to obtain the money needed to go to college. By simply doing a bit of research a student can easily pay down their college debt while going to college through any number of programs and scholarships available. All it takes is a little bit of hard work before college to make the years after college that much easier.