Applying for student loans for college is one of the easiest ways to incur debt you’ll have to pay for the better part of your life. As a matter of fact, thousands of graduates come out of college or university with an average of $29,800 of debt under their name based on 2018 statistics.
With education being a highly prized commodity and a privilege these days rather than simply a right for every student, it’s essential to shed light on some ways to avoid incurring debt. While student loans for college are certainly a viable option, these can become too costly in the long run.
Thankfully, there are numerous financing options available in the market today. Take a look at some of these choices and how you can avoid taking student loans for college. Read on to know more.
Apply for Scholarships
One of the best ways to do so is by applying for scholarships. There are various types of scholarships available for students, may it be academic-based or even sports-based. With a lot of people vying for a place, finding one that’s suited to your needs and merits is the best way to go.
To do this, play to your strengths, talents, and areas that you are skilled in. You can apply for scholarships that are based on your skills and talents such as playing sports like basketball, or playing instruments.
You can also look for scholarships based on the course or direction you’re planning to major in.
Grants Outside of Educational Organizations
Many a times, companies or institutions not only give out these financial aid of sorts based on your skills and intellect, but also based on a more personal connect like your ethnicity or your parents’ place of work.
There are also social institutions or volunteer or religious groups you may be affiliated with, which give funding for school fees and tuition from time to time. To jumpstart your search, a simple Google visit might help. You can also talk with your high school guidance counselor.
While there are schools you apply to which give scholarships, there is a wider range of grants given outside of these educational organizations, so make sure to explore these and apply, apply, apply.
One of the more popular platforms to score funding for college today is through crowdfunding. Crowdfunding is asking strangers (alongside friends, family, and relatives near and far) to chip in in any way that they can to help pay for your studies.
While more mainstream sites such as GoFundMe tend to take center stage, your crowdfunding journey can start with your more immediate circle – with friends and family. The former, however, can be circulated on social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter, garnering more traction.
As graduation comes looming around the corner, ask your circle to give cash or check instead so you can add this to your college fund. You can also appeal to citizens online to give a bit toward your education.
Seek Campus Employment Opportunities
Juggling a part-time job with your studies can seem a bit grueling, but fret not. There are FAFSA-awarded work-study packages that provide students access with a particular funding amount should they work on campus once school starts.
For schools that do not participate in the FAFSA Federal Work-Study Program, you can always help reduce the costs of your education by finding work on the campus such as being a tour guide for students, a resident assistant (RA), or even a tutor.
These positions pay well and can even get you free or reduced housing costs or meal plans, so make sure to consider these employment options. Not only will these job opportunities help you finance the cost of your college education, but it’d also be closer to your classes and activities.
The Bottom Line
Student loans for college are not the end-all-be-all of things. From getting crowdfunding to applying for scholarships, there are a number of ways you can help alleviate your financial distress without resulting in getting loans.
With these aforementioned options, you can save yourself from experiencing crippling debt and instead, look forward to fruitful and enjoyable years while studying the course of your dreams.