College costs have skyrocketed over the last several years. So unless you want to graduate with crippling debt, you’ll need a college job.
Ideally you would spend four years with no obligation other than to study (and party) but not working while in college is not possible for many of us.
Thomas is our resident college expert and his first suggestion is to carefully consider the cost of your chosen college. It’s not longer realistic to attend the best college you can get into. Not if that college is tens of thousands of dollars more expensive than a second tier choice.
A state school may not be your dream school but graduating $80,000 in debt is not a dream situation either.
College is 90% what you put into it.Tweet This
Work study is government funding given to the school to distribute. If you are eligible, you can get an on campus job and part of your salary comes from that funding. Not all schools participate so that may be something else to consider when choosing a school.
Money isn’t the only reason to work during college. You have a lot of free time which you can easily mismanage. A job helps you set a maintain a schedule. If you can land a job that is related to your major, you can start gaining experience and make connections that will help you after college.
To intern or not intern when it’s unpaid? That’s tough. If you can afford it and it’s a good opportunity, go for it. If it’s going to add to your debt, you may need to find an internship that pays or just a regular part time job.
College is still in reach for most of us but we will sort of have to cobble together the money from various resources.
College Info Geek: Thomas’s site to help you get the most from your college experience.
Debt Free College Grad: Our episode on paying for college with grants and scholarships.
Shanice Miller: Thomas’s interview with the debt free college grad.
Earnest: If you already have student debt, Earnest can help you refinance.