The cost of college is ridiculously high, usually running between $20,000 - $60,000 per year. Over a four-year period, you're looking at a $100,000 investment for that college degree. That's staggering - and that's on the low end.
So naturally, everyone is in search of that elusive free money that will help offset this overwhelming price tag. While there are scholarships, along with financial aid, there's honestly not a whole lot of "free money" out there for the average, solid student who is not in financial need.
But, I have a remedy that is essentially worth a $15,000 - $50,000 scholarship.
What many people fail to realize is that nearly 60% of students do not graduate in four years which means that degree ends up costing up to 40% more than it should have. That's tens of thousands of dollars spent that was given no initial consideration in the early planning of college applications.
As many as 4 in 10 students transfer schools, and up to 50% change majors. And, some do both! In each scenario, college credits are usually lost in the process with the average loss equivalent to an entire semester of college.
So, want to save tens of thousands of dollars on that college degree?
1- Take the time to research colleges and make campus visits. Be sure that the university is a good fit culturally, socially, geographically, academically, and otherwise.
2- Take advantage of the many available career assessments and choose a major that capitalizes on your unique strengths, interests, and goals.
3- When college starts, print out that degree plan and stick to it. If necessary, take summer school classes here and there. It's much cheaper than an extra semester of college down the road.
Invest the time and resources to find the college and major that is right for you, and stick to that degree plan. Do this, and you've got, what I call, the "good-fit scholarship"!
Cassie Friend is a college admissions consultant who helps kids navigate all aspects of the college application and admissions processes. With a strong emphasis on college list building and extensive career/major exploration practices, she recognizes the long-term value in both a good-fit university and major in providing significant cost savings. Visit her website for complete package information and services: www.gatewaycollegeapps.com
I am a wife, mom, and educator. I love learning and helping others learn. Few things are more rewarding than helping kids find their way.