College is one of the most exciting, challenging, and valuable experiences in life. It is also one of the most expensive. Earning a degree that will afford a well-paying job is hardly worth it if your working years are spent paying off pricey college loans.
It is important that students know that loans are not the only option when it comes to paying for college. In addition to grants and scholarships, there are several programs available to students that will help pay tuition and enrich their education at the same time.
For students who have already chosen a major and have a clear idea of what they would like to do for a living, fellowships are a smart choice for paying college tuition. Fellowships, like scholarships, are awarded to personally selected, high-achieving college students.
They typically pay all or a portion of the student's tuition and fees in return for the student's agreement to work for a specific company or agency for a specified amount of time after graduation.
The money granted in a fellowship does not have to be paid back, but most fellowship programs do require that the student maintain a minimum grade point average.
Depending on a student's schedule and work load, a work study program could be a very helpful tool for paying college tuition. Work study programs are provided to students who demonstrate financial need and usually consist of working a job on campus.
Students are offered a maximum number of weekly hours they may work, but they may more or less how many hours they would like to work within those limits. In many cases, students are able to work a work study job that affords them experience relative to their major. These positions look great on a recent college graduate's resume.
Some students are faced with the decision of working their much-needed full time job or going to school. Holding a full time job these days can be just enough to pay for living expenses, which makes paying for college tuition seem like a distant fantasy.
Full time job or not, however, this fantasy is still within reach. Some companies are actually willing to pay for an employee's college expenses, depending on what area of studies the employee attends school for. The idea of this benefit is for the employer to develop a well-qualified employee who already has some experience with the company.
The student and employee in this situation ends up earning not only a good education, but usually a secure job as well in this deal. Every student is different, which is why there are a variety of options for paying college tuition. Students in need of funds for school are no longer limited to hoping that they are eligible for grants or taking out expensive loans that take decades to pay back.
For students who are smart, responsible, and willing to work hard, there is a world of opportunity to help them earn the college education they desire.