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4 Ways to Help Pay for College Education

19 February, 2021

If you are one of the millions who will enroll in college soon, you know there’s lots of preparation needed before you head off to your new school. First, you have to do your research and see which universities appeal to you. Sometimes you might select an undergraduate program that fits your specific career goals and other times choosing a strong overall academic institution might be the best path. From there, you’ll want to visit your top colleges and get an in-person sense of where you’ll be attending school.

There are also plenty of personal financial decisions involved when you are selecting the university that is best for you. You might choose to attend a junior college for the first two years to cut your tuition costs, then move to a larger state school for your final two years. Some states have programs that allow you to make these transfers easily. With college costs rising year after year, it’s important to make sure that you know how you will pay for your education well in advance of enrolling in your new university.

Fill Out Your FAFSA Forms

When you apply for your undergraduate program you will also need to fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA, forms. These documents are used by your prospective university to help determine the kinds and amount of student aid you will receive. Each college that sends you an acceptance letter will also detail the Cost of Attendance (COA) and specify their financial aid offer to you. From there, you will have to come up with a way to pay the remainder of the annual costs yourself.

Take Out a Private Student Loan

In order to pay for the remaining balance of what you owe to your school after financial aid has been applied; it’s helpful to apply for a private student loan. Banks, credit unions and finance companies offer these loans at attractive interest rates. It helps to do your research so you can select the private loan that is just right for you. You can also apply for a loan with a cosigner, which may help you with the approval process.

Get a High-Paying Internship

While you can make money working a restaurant or retail job while you attend school, it’s far better to invest your time in looking for a high-paying internship. If you are a top candidate you can spend your summer working for a company and making substantial money for college at the same time. Start your research at your university career center. Many times, alumni will offer opportunities to student’s currently enrolled at their alma mater. You’ll also want to do plenty of networking to uncover the best internships that are available in your field.

Start a Tech Services Business

If you have any interest in technology, you can invest time learning skills such as web development, graphic design or programming. There are numerous online courses or academies where you can learn how to master these disciplines, often at little cost. Once you have the skills, you can do word-of-mouth advertising to promote your new entrepreneurial business. In today’s world, everything runs on a tech framework so your skills will be in high demand.

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