Graduating Without Debt: Is It a Reality or Is It Just a Dream?
College tuition and attendance costs are higher than ever. And more and more students have to take loans to complete their education. Although for some, it might seem like the only way to get a degree, it is not true.
It is quite possible to graduate without debt. It takes a lot of effort, but in the long run – it is worth it. As there is https://essaypro.com/write-my-essay.html service that helps students with assignments, there are also many services and options that can help to reduce or even eliminate debt.
Why Loan is a Bad Idea?
The obvious reason is that it is a much bigger issue than it seems. The number of citizens with student debt has grown in the last years. According to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, this number grew by 15% in 2012. And in 2015, 71% of students have graduated with loans, which is twice as many as 20 years ago.
Paying it out can take from 10 to 30 years after graduating! For many of those people, it means that they will not be able to buy a home for a long time after graduation. And delayed payment might decrease the credit rating of a person. Loan debt is the second-largest source of debt in the USA and results in negative financial effects for graduates that might last for decades.
That’s why it is better to stay out of it. But how can you afford an education without it? Well, there are many things one can do.
What You Can Do While in High-School
First of all, it is better for parents to set an education fund for their children if they have such an opportunity. Even if it doesn’t pay the whole tuition, any amount will help decrease the possible debt. Yet, it is not the only thing one can do. After all, not everyone has the cash to pay tuition. Here are other solutions:
- Prior Learning Assessments.
It is a program that allows earning college credits while at high-school. Often, the only costs for such courses are exam fees, but even they require tuition, it is way cheaper than in college. Earning credits beforehand helps to graduate earlier, which means paying less money afterward.
- Dual enrollment programs.
It is another opportunity to attend college-level classes while in high-school. You can attend classes at a local community college and earn credits. It might cost half of the tuition or even be free. You can earn up to 2 years of college with such a program.
- Fill out the FAFSA form.
The sooner you do this, the better. You can also fill it out every year of studying to get financial aid.
- Start searching and applying for scholarships.
Many people think that you can apply only as a senior in high-school. It is not true, you can apply as a junior in high-school or even earlier – there are scholarship programs that you can get even in middle school. The best thing is that they add up. So the more you get, the more tuition they will cover. It takes time and effort, but it is the best way to pay for college.
Financial Aid and Funding
There are several ways to fund higher education; below are some of the best ones.
Apply for them as soon as possible, do not forget to renew. You can also apply for new and old ones all the time you are studying for your degree.
They are often given for particular research, a specific program, or even necessary skills. Search and figure out whether you can apply for one. The appropriate ones should also be in your FAFSA response.
- Employer Tuition Reimbursement.
It is granted by a company to a person that works for them and has an interest in acquiring education. It depends on the longevity of your work and an aimed degree, but many companies offer such opportunities, namely Starbucks, Apple, Gap, and others.
- Military-based funding.
One can earn it by their service, or it can be transferred by a relative through G.I. Bill.
Lower the Costs in College
It is all about budgeting and choosing affordable options.
- Consider in-state college, they are usually twice cheaper than out-of-state ones. There also many in-state student scholarships that are much easier to get.
- Think about enrolling in community college first. It is cheaper, and you can gain credits there for two years and then enroll in a BA program. You can take all the general courses like English or History there and also save accommodation money by staying with your parents.
- Think about “No-Loan” colleges and the benefits they offer.
- Work during studying or in summer. There are plenty of options, on and off-campus.
- Take more credits each semester to graduate earlier and save money.
- Stay on the budget.
With funding higher education, it is never early to start. You need to research all the options, whether these are affordable schools, possible scholarships or grants. It is also very helpful to work while studying as it helps to keep finances on a healthy track.