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Paying for College: Scholarships, Grants and Loans

College is expensive. College is also becoming more and more important for people who want to go on to have long term careers. Not all people are fortunate to have the helpful funding of mother and father to help them along either. But not everybody gets out of high school to find themselves with their acceptance letter in one hand and a scholarship in the other. For some people, making it to the pique of picking a college was the hardest part of the process before they realized that they had to pay for it.

There are three main ways to fund college without having to whine and hope that mom and dad will bail you out – scholarships, grants, and loans. All have their upsides, all have their downsides – the big thing is that they’ll help the process along while giving an opportunity to further a basic education, even if it is only to an associate’s degree. With the government cutting funds to schools more and more, the amount of financial help that one can get is becoming more and more crucial.

Scholarships are one way to fund college that has been known to be very common – at least in name. In elementary school I was aware of what a scholarship was. However, what I wasn’t aware of was how much scholarships will vary. There are several different ways to get a scholarship, whether it is a school offering one or applying. While being offered a scholarship may be more stable, there are also limitations that can be attached to all of them – amount, what it can be used for, how much time there is to use up the funds for it, and requirements for maintaining it are all examples of such limitations. However, there is also the bonus of being able to combine more than one scholarship for funding – this means even getting small scholarships will add up over time. When applying for green loans, make sure all the essential information is gathered through the people. A look can be made at the to know about the accurate information available with the applicants. A proof can be retained through the person to provide funds in the safe hands. 

A lot of companies will offer scholarships as they can get tax breaks for them. A lot of schools have information up on some available scholarships in their student centers as well.

Grants are awarded for different purposes – like bettering a school for educational purposes or fixing a public road.

Grants are money that has been given to you by the government or some other authoritative body like it to fund …well, whatever actually. Most people use it for schooling, but it tends to be known as ‘money that can be spent however you want’. It’s not advisable to waste free money when it could be put to good use. Like a scholarship it isn’t required to pay it back. However, unlike scholarships, you can’t apply for a lot of grants and then use them to pay for school. The limit on the amount of money anybody can get using a government grant is established by only offering one source that will know how much money there is.

Both scholarships and grants have to be applied for, but in the end they don’t have to be paid back – outside of any rare loopholes in which the return of the money, such as abuse of the system, would be required.

The final method of obtaining money to pay for college is the ever so common loan. A loan, unlike grants and scholarships, do have to be paid back once the term of the loan is over – normally around 6 months after graduating from college. It also gains interest which means once graduated, it will be important to get a job and start paying it back almost immediately. The upside to a loan is that there are no stipulations to getting one to pay for school outside of having good credit and paying it back.

There are always people who can pay for their college out of their own pocket as well – schools establish payment plans all the time which only requires a few months of more easily obtained payments while still going to class. Some schools will also work with students to have them work in exchange for tuition. However, between books, housing, and tuition, not everybody is capable of sending themselves to college. A shove in the right direction is always a good place to start.

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