College isn’t cheap.
And it doesn’t appear to be getting any cheaper. Cornell Economics Professor Ronald Ehrenberg pointed out that tuition has been known to “regularly outstrip growth in median family income”.
So if you are a prospective college student looking to pay for college, what do you do?
There’s no magic bullet, but here are five ways to fight rising college costs.
#1 Cut Costs
You and your parents have certain necessities to pay for, and those come first. You probably also participate in some activities you love. Those can probably stay, too. But if you stand back and think about it, there may be a few things you consistently purchase small amounts of that you can cut back on. Spending gobs of cash on videogames or collectibles will eat into your college savings if you aren’t careful.
Save the cash for class.
You shouldn’t get a job that will hurt your grades, but the law says you can begin working at 16 years old. If you have enough time, you may want to take advantage of that and get a job. Jobs can not only help boost your back account for college, but help you earn enough money that you may have some to actually spend.
You may even find a job you really like and return to something like it after college.
If you have a little bit of money and want to grow it, you may want to consider taking a little more control over your college fund. If you don’t have a college fund, you may want to start one. While investing in the market does carry some risk, there are some relatively safe options and funds that are meant to both build your stockpile and protect it.
#4 Find Scholarships
There are TONS of scholarships. In fact, there are so many out there that there is a high likelihood you will find one for you. Get a book with a good solid scholarship list and find every scholarship you are eligible for, then start applying. Keep an eye out for potential scholarships at school. Don’t be afraid to use the internet. In a short amount of research, you can find all kinds of options. Test Masters offers a scholarship for students who take their courses and score perfectly on the SAT or ACT.
#5 Get Creative
Some businesses actually offer students the chance to make money based on referrals and other processes. Keep your ears open for opportunities offered by businesses and see if you can make extra cash that way. You may want to start with our Test Masters referral program, something that has netted several incoming college students thousands of dollars for their future academic careers.
There are plenty of ways to better your bank balance. Take advantage of all of them.