Last time, we talked about grants and tax credits serving as free money for college. Today, we’re going to look at two more ways you can score free money for your education.
Like grants, scholarships are offered by numerous organizations. A student may qualify for multiple small scholarships, which add up to a significant amount, or may qualify for one large scholarship. You can talk to the financial aid office about all the academic, general and specialty scholarships available.
Students are often hesitant to ask about scholarships, concerned that their GPA isn’t high enough to qualify them. But scholarships have a broad range of qualifications and they aren’t just based on grades or test scores. Certain scholarships can be issued based on artistic or dramatic talent, athletic ability and subject aptitude. Some scholarships can be won based on the strength of an essay or by winning a contest. Others may be awarded based on financial need or the community you plan to work in after graduating. Talk to your school’s financial aid office so that you can get a comprehensive list of the scholarship programs best suited to your individual situation.
Free Tuition and Reimbursement Programs
Many colleges offer special, tuition-free programs to students with SAT and ACT scores that meet a certain level. While some schools offer free tuition to these students, others offer free tuition in exchange for participation in a work-study program. It can be a challenge to find these schools, so check out this list of 12 of them (as of 2012).
Employers also often offer tuition reimbursement for employees who take classes. This may be a good fit for adults who decide to go back to school, but college-age students may also benefit if they work for an employer offering this benefit while they attend school.
Getting a college education is still one of the most crucial steps toward gaining entry into a profession you love. While student loans may be necessary to supplement the expense, avoiding them as much as possible will help you solidify your future financial foundation.