College tuition is a staggering amount, and paying for it can be overwhelming. Luckily, there are many different ways to cover the bills that could put a dent in your account balance.
1. Financial Aid
Financial aid is free money that you don’t have to pay back, provided that you fill out the forms correctly. It comes in the form of scholarships, grants, and student loans.
Student loans are free money that you have to pay back. However, unlike interest-free credit cards, student loans are much harder to cancel.
Grants are free money that’s offered by your school’s faculty. It falls into three main categories: merit-based, need-based, and special programs. It can either be given in the form of money or an award or both.
2. Credit Cards
You’re probably already familiar with one of these. Credit cards are a great way to pay for educational items that you’re not able to afford, like tuition and textbooks. However, credit cards can come at a risk: interest rates can be high, and they require balance payments every month, which could strain your budget.
3. Tuition Discounts
These discounts are offered by some colleges and universities to students who agree to “sign up” for classes. The amount of the discount depends on the school, but many of them offer around 10% or more off your tuition. They are usually available for both in-state and out-of-state students.
If you’re thinking about going to a private institution, check out their scholarship opportunities. They probably have a lot of resources to help you pay for school, but they’re usually not well advertised. If you don’t find everything on the website, try calling the admissions department and asking them personally.
5. ESL Credits from a College
This is called “flowing” credits. Find out whether your high school has an ESL program and how long it takes for you to earn it. If an international student chooses something like this, the credit will usually transfer to your home country in exchange for a bachelor’s degree.