Going to college can be a great use of four or five years of your life, and it can propel your career forward, or it can be a complete waste of money if you go for all the wrong reasons. If you decide that college is the right thing for you and want to go, you’re going to have to find a way to pay for it. College tuition rises at a rate of 7% per year and is not getting any cheaper. In some circles, you might have to pay up to $20,000 a year or more to go college, and most students just don’t have that. Here are several ways that you can find the money to pay for your college education.
Working in High School
If you work 10 or 15 hours a week during high school and save most of that money for college, you can easily wind up with $5,000 or $10,000 in a savings account before college even begins; it’s like you’re giving yourself a scholarship.
Making Scholarship Hunting a Summer Job During High School
The summer between your junior and senior year is the time to go crazy with your college scholarship applications. If you spend the entire summer applying for scholarships, working on applications for 20 or 30 hours a week, you can easily make more than enough scholarship money to pay for school. You’ll apply for hundreds of grants and scholarships and get rejected for most of them, but many of them will say yes and help pay for your education!
Parents, Grandparents and Rich Uncles
Many students have their college education subsidized by a relative who has come out pretty well in life and can afford to help them pay for school. If you have a relative with a significant amount of money that likes you, it might not hurt to show them where you’re at financially, what college will cost, and the benefits of you were going to college. If you’re going to do this, make sure to have your stuff down and make a persuasive case to your family member.
Many colleges and universities offer fellowships to undergraduate students who essentially allow students to go to school for free if they work for the university. For example, the South Dakota Regental system pays for the tuition of students in their technology fellowship program who agree to work for 11 hours a week.
Working in College
Some students complain that they don’t have the time or the energy to work while they’re taking classes, but this is simply not the case. You’re in school for all of 15 hours a week and maybe doing homework for another 10 or 15 hours after that.