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What is the best way to avoid student loans?

#scholarships #student #student-loans #loans #student-debt #college-student

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Chelsea’s Answer

Hi Kendra,


I have a couple of recommendations for you - all involve some hard work, but hard work in this case can pay off!


I would recommend educating yourself of possible scholarships, grants, etc. that you may be eligible for. This might involve asking a university advisor, a highschool advisor, searching your desired univeristy's websites, or even searching the internet. I would recommend looking for scholarships that may relate to your desired degree as these might be the most relevant.


I would recommend considering whether or not maintaining a part-time job while attending school would be possible. For example, if you took one or two classes less a year (extending the time it takes to complete your degree by a year or two) then perhaps you could maintain a part-time job that would allow you to save while attending school. This is something I did. In the summers I worked full-time and took a couple of summer classes to stay on track with my degree. In the fall and winter I took a full course load and worked evenings and weekends. This was challenging, but I was able to earn enough income to be pay for my schooing by the next year.


I am not sure if either of these two recommendations are helpful to you, but I found them to be helpful for me when I was going through university.


Best of luck!

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Richard’s Answer

Another great option that can help is to continue to live at your parent's home and attend the local community college. Many community colleges offer free or reduced tuition to local graduates provides a full scholarship that covers tuition, books, and fees for up to 60 credit hours – regardless of family income – for all graduates of local high schools with a GPA or 80 or above.
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Ann’s Answer

Hi Kendra,


Chelsea is spot on here! I would just add that you should also not max out your stipends. The smaller the stipend, the less loans you are borrowing. Many students will hit their loan limits by using stipends to pay for their housing or food. However, it costs way more in the long run then working part-time to come up with extra money. Work study programs are also beneficial, because you can earn grants by working on campus. Lastly, there are Vista programs or the Peace Corps. that will help pay your student loans, if you enlist for a period of time. Hope this helps!

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Sherie’s Answer

I too was like you and did not want to be stuck with a large amount of student loans so I will tell you what I did. I am from California but was attending college is Washington, DC. My mom pulled out a student loan for my first year of college, however I knew I wanted to live in New York and go to school and finish there. I moved to New York, waited a year to become a resident (that drops your school tuition by thousands) , and then instead of going to a private university like NYU or Columbia, instead I went to the City University of New York, which I saved additional thousands of dollars a semester. Going to that school I worked 2 jobs , 1 in the evenings and another on the weekends and went through a program they had where you made payments every 3 months, it allowed me to pay out of pocket through my jobs and I graduated with no debt except for the 1 year I attended the private university in Washington, DC. Try to find a local city university, that allows payment options, you will cut your tuition cost in half and will graduate student loan FREE.
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