Aug 18, 2011

Saving Money on Higher Education (written by Amanda Leeann)

Today, I am taking part in Blog Swap day with 20 Something Bloggers! This means I write a guest post someone's blog and they write a guest post on mine. Be sure to check read her guest post (below) and then read my post at Amanda's Musings posted here.

Hi all! I’m Amanda, and Angela has agreed to let me take over her blog for a day!

While I don’t run a blog about thrifting, I do consider myself a thrifter. For instance, today I wore a 50-cent {no, I’m not talking about the rapper} belt to work and got more compliments than you could shake a stick at. But I digress.

Yesterday, I started my fourth year of college. Guys, college is expensive like whoa. But there are ways to cut costs. & thus I am presenting:

Amanda’s Guide to Saving Money on Higher Education

1.   Community College
I know, I know. It sounds lame. In all honesty, it is kind of lame. What’s not lame is that {at least in my experience} one semester at a community school is less than half what a semester costs at a state university. If you’re worried about your degree sounding lame, don’t be. I had a counselor tell me “you’re only as good as your last degree” and it’s true. While I do have an Associate of Science from a smaller school, I will ultimately have a Bachelor degree from a state university, but with much less debt.
      Used Books
Text books are a rip off. They change a few page numbers every couple of years and then act like they’ve done everyone a favor by having a new $100 book to buy. I don’t think so. If you have to have a specific edition, try sites like Amazon, Chegg, etc. I type a book’s ISBN number into Google and see what pops up. Many professors know books are expensive and don’t require the newest editions. If this is the case, buy the older edition! The leg work is more in the beginning {changing page numbers on the syllabus} but for the savings, it’s worth it.

3.   Scholarships
Make sure you ask about EVERYTHING. I transferred in January, and only just found out about a transfer scholarship I should have been getting that I didn’t even know existed. The hassle of financial aid offices is overwhelming and annoying, but there’s always the chance you could be rewarded.
The university I attend offered small scholarships for summer classes this year. While class in the summer is kind of lame, saving money isn’t. Check to see if your school offers any such things for summer or mini-term classes.

College is expensive. A higher education isn’t going to come free for most people – I have to think of it as an investment when I start to be paranoid about the loans I’m accruing. But there are ways to save money. It can be a lot of legwork, and time consuming – it takes much more time to type in ISBN numbers and compare prices on the Internet than simply going to the campus bookstore and handing them your class list. While a college education can’t exactly be thrifted, it can be done for cheaper. As long as you stay away from private school. 

For more blog posts by Amanda, and to check out my guest post on her blog, go to Amanda's Musings!
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