The student debt rate in the United States is at the highest it’s ever been, in the trillions! With tuition running so high it’s important to find ways to supplement the cost with the help of scholarships, grants, financial aid offers, low interest loans, fundraising and more. As a freshman or sophomore college student or a high school senior it’s important to start applying now so you can get money for your college tuition. You can significantly drop your tuition costs by incorporating these tactics, let’s explore.
Ways to Get Money for Your College Tuition
1. FAFSA- Free Application for Federal Student Aid
FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) should be your immediate first step in acquiring money for college. FAFSA, a part of the U.S. Department of Education, provides what is known as a Pell Grant, however this is only available to undergraduates, if you have your bachelors already then they won’t give your the Pell Grant, only a low-interest loan. So if you’re planning to go for a Graduate degree, it’s important to try to take graduate classes if you can as an undergraduate. Prices of tuition also goes up when you are a graduate, food for thought. The FAFSA award also provides a loan which you can use or ignore. Who qualifies for FAFSA? Many people do, but there are a few qualification requirements, you can find out more at their official website, Fafsa.gov. Remember to apply ASAP, because some colleges and states award financial aid on a first-come, first-served basis, so once the money is gone – that’s it.
Kickstarter and IndyGogo changed the way we raise money for projects and businesses, why shouldn’t we use this model to raise money for our tuition? Well the good news is that you can run a fundraising campaign for just that! YouCaring.com is a compassionate fundraising platform and one of their specialties are for raising money for college tuition. I really like this because they take zero fees, that’s right, 0% commission! YouCaring makes raising money for college tuition fast, easy—and free. Students get the tools they need to offset the rising costs of getting a quality education, absolutely free. Start your fundraiser today.
3. Applying for Scholarships
There’s many scholarships available to high school and college students, but signing up for scholarships can be a headache because they ask for too much personal or revealing information. There’s some popular websites we would suggest which would make this process easier. All they need are 5 things: your grade, GPA, state, gender, and ethnic background. ScholarshipPoints.com may be the solution for your tuition needs. Each year, the ScholarshipPoints membership program awards more than $100,000 in scholarships to current and future college students. The way it works is you earn points by doing very simple tasks like taking surveys, joining certain Facebook groups, and more. Each point you earn is a potential entry in a scholarship drawing. You decide how to spend your points and which scholarship drawings to enter. The more points you earn and spend, the more chances you have to win! Your chances of winning increase based on the number of points you spent on each drawing. ScholarshipPoints is definitely a creative way to earn money to pay for your tuition. Head on over to their Scholarship Wall to see what scholarships they are giving away. Become a member for free today.
4. Private Student Loans
No one said that raising money means that you won’t pay it back. Sometimes your awarded grants and scholarships fall short and wont cover your entire tuition. Private student loans can help you meet the costs of your education by supplementing your other financial aid and can help you with purchasing college supplies like a computer or dorm room essentials. Interest rates vary for these student loans, depending how much you need and what plan you choose, such as fixed or variable interest rates. If you’re interested in going this route we would recommend PrivateStudentLoans.com because they have all the information you need all in one place. They have a loan calculator and a list of lenders who give great low interest rates and other perks with an easy guided application process. If you’re confused or just need more info, it’s definitely worth checking out PrivateStudentLoans.com.
In the past college students had to dig ditches and shovel snow to earn extra cash, but now days you can do the equivalent online.
- Blogging– By writing about what you love can really offset costs with Google Adsense income. We suggest the platform WordPress, because it makes it too easy to do this. There’s an infinite supply of resources on how to get started on this, but the basic rule of thumb is content is king. Your website can look like shit, as long as it has unique useful information on it, you can monetize it and even make a surplus of cash! We suggest using SiteGround to host your site. Only 3.95 a month and that INCLUDES the domain name(dot com name). If you sign up for the WordPress hosting, you get WordPress already installed ready to go, or you can choose regular hosting and get a one-click easy installation of WordPress. If this all sounds confusing to you, don’t worry, SiteGround’s customer service is amazing.
- Sell Stock Photography– If you have a a nice DSLR camera you can make a killing! You have access to tons of beautiful college students! Imagine taking stock like photos of things people want to use, like photos of students doing things? Using laptops, smartphones, technology in general. You can even take pics of just random groups of people dressed in specific clothing doing specific actions. This site has a great list of sites you can sell stock photography on.
- Sell Products/Services Online– eBay, Amazon, Etsy, Elance, Fiverr, Udemy: choose your weapon. With these websites, it makes it brainless to utilize whatever talents you may have to earn some extra cash. If you like writing reports, you can check out Chegg.com which is actually a pretty awesome place for homework help in general. If you want you can tutor on UDemy or sell an eBook on Amazon. You would be surprised on what people purchase online. If you want to do mini jobs, check out Fiverr, Fund your entire college $5 at a time!
- YouTube/Twitch– Nowadays webcams are built right into the monitor, making it easy to record yourself and create a vlog. Maybe Vlogging isn’t your thing, that’s cool because if you have a smartphone, which you obviously do, the camera’s are high enough quality to record content to edit and post on YouTube. You can use simple tools like Windows Movie Maker or iMovie for Mac to edit your videos, or even use more advanced software like Sony Vegas. If you like gaming, then give Twitch.tv a chance, they LOVE retro streams.
T-shirts– Every entrepreneur has been in the t-shirt business once in their life. Being college makes it fun and easy to sell t-shirts to your classmates and other students. If you have an event coming up, print out 2 dozens t-shirts and sell it at the event for $20. They will sell because people want to be part of something. Give a couple free shirts out to the popular students, and you’re almost guaranteed to sell out! So who cares if they are iron on designs, they are meant to be temporary. All that matters is that someone cool is wearing it. You can also sell your designs online and to other college if you like for maximizing your cash-flow.
Another bonus tip to help lower tuition costs is that you could live at home if its close by to your university, then you can significantly reduce your tuition as well. That choice however could exclude you from the entire college experience of living in the dorm rooms. If you have most tips or advice on how to get money to lower your college tuition, post them below in the comments and don’t forget to subscribe for more tips directly to your inbox.