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How to Pay for College in Hard Times

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College Without the Debt

The cost of college debt is exhorbitant. "Students who graduated from college in 2010 with student loans owed an average of $25,250, up 5 percent from the previous year," according to New York Times, Nov.2, 2011. New York Times

How is a parent (or a student) supposed to pay for college in these hard times? There are many ways to not accumulate thousands and thousands of student debt. Read on to find different ways to being prepared and being proactive about your students' education.

Photo image by Gayle McLaughlin

How to pay for college in hard times

How to pay for college in hard times

How to Pay for College in these Hard Times

Just because you are reading this article, you are several steps ahead of most parents. Realizing you don't want to pay exhorbitant student loans is a first step. Start when your student is a freshman in high school to learn everything you can about how to get a college education for less.

One simple way is to have your student enroll in every college class they can in high school. Your student will get personal attention, the class sizes will be smaller, and individual help will be available. Many general education courses in college have 100-200 in a lecture class. There is zero personal attention. The college classes in high school are called AP classes, short for Advanced Placement classes. Other classes will be offered by local colleges that may be called something else. Contact the school counselor early in the freshman year to learn about all of the opportunities.

Photo Credit: http://www.morguefile.com/archive/display/182699

How to Pay for College in Hard Times
The cost of college debt is exhorbitant. "Students who graduated from college in 2010 with student loans owed an average of $25,250, up 5 percent from t...

Pay for College: Work Colleges
As a teacher/librarian for over 30 years, I have tried to help many students and parents find money for college. Do you need help paying for college for your...

How to Pay for College Classes in Hard Times

Technical Schools

Most high schools in urban areas have technical schools your student can attend. These include computer classes, firefighting classes, nursing classes and emergency medical technician classes. Depending on the interests of your student, these training classes can be invaluable in getting your student a head start in his profession. In some circumstances, these schools can graduate your student with certificates that may eliminate the need for college. This is an idea that is well worth investigating.

How to Pay for College in Hard Times

Community Colleges

A parent should never overlook the advantages of community colleges. These are colleges that offer the exact same courses for the first two years of any degree--but at a third of the price! This could significantly cut the cost of four years of college immediately. Plus, the student could still live at home for the first two years and work to help defray costs. In hard times, the cost-effectiveness of community colleges cannot be beat.

Work Colleges

How to Pay for College in Hard Times

Are you familiar with the term work college? These are a group of colleges that combines work , learning and service. This concept is very different than just working in college. All work colleges emphasize the value of community, social equity and teamwork and have been doing so for many, many years.

USNews has listed the 10 schools with the least amount of student debt in 2010. This is an amazing article--

USNews

I am familiar with College of the Ozarks and had a relative attend this wonderful college. This concept really works!

College of the Ozarks

How to Pay for College in Hard Times

Military Academies

Another little known fact about reducing your college debt are the tuition-free Colleges or Work Colleges. The five branches of the military have colleges that are totally free:

The United States Military Academy (USMA) .

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United States Military Academy

The United States Naval Academy (USNA)

United States Naval Academy

The United States Coast Guard Academy (USCGA) .

United States Coast Guard Academy

The United States Air Force Academy (USAFA)

United States Air Force Academy

The United States Merchant Marine Academy (USMMA)

United States Merchant Marine Academy

These academies have different eligibility requirements, but are definitely worth investigating. Taking ROTC classes in high school can also get students wonderful scholarships.

Pay for College: Work Colleges
As a teacher/librarian for over 30 years, I have tried to help many students and parents find money for college. Do you need help paying for college for your...

Let Me Know You Stopped By!

Coopstar on February 13, 2012:

These are some great points. Fantastic lens!

DuaneJ on February 04, 2012:

This will help a countless number of people. It was very informative.

sherioz on February 04, 2012:

Working while you study has always been something many students have had to do. (Me, for instance.) You need to find a balance so you can also get enough sleep. Getting a scholarship is nice as well.

WriterJanis2 on January 27, 2012:

Great information.

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