FOR FUTURE FRESHMEN ONLY
For many of us, a big part of choosing
a school is the cost. This section will help you understand
the real and "relative" costs of a college education.
Different colleges have different tuitions based on location,
size, and other factors. One thing influencing the tuition
and fees charged is whether the school is public or private.
Private schools are not state-supported. This means they are
funded through tuition, fees, and donations. A public school
is statesupported, meaning that some of the tax you
pay helps support the public colleges in your state.
When looking at the cost of a "public" school,
you will notice that tuition is determined differently for
"residents" and "non-residents." Generally,
you're considered a resident if you've graduated high school
within the same state where you want to attend college, or
if you have spent a minimum amount of time living in the state.
Going to a college out of state as a non-resident easily can
cost double or triple the amount you'd spend if you were to
attend an in-state school.
Hot Money-Saving Tips For High
The college selection and application process can be expensive.
Here are some great tips for saving your hard-earned cash:
Hot Tip: Most colleges require
an application fee when you apply. These fees run about $50
per college. If you apply to five schools, you're looking
at $250 in application fees alone. The good news is some schools
Scholars application fee waivers, plus some colleges have
their own fee waiver programs. Be sure to check out www.collegeboard.com
for SAT's fee waiver program, which offers students with financial
need fee waivers for the SAT tests as well as fee waivers
for college apps.
Hot Tip: How do you know if a
college is right for you? Visit! Meet the students. See the
campus. Talk to professors. It really is the best way to see
if you've got a "fit."
Obviously, though, if you've got out-of-state colleges on
your list, this can get very expensive very quickly. One way
to curb costs: Visit schools only after you've been accepted.
This way you're not wasting money on visits to schools that
might not accept you. Other options: Drive instead of fly
and share expenses with a friend who's considering the same
Hot Tip: Write a killer essay.
Many colleges require a personal essay of about 500 to 1,000
words for admission. The purpose of the essay is to give college
admission counselors a glimpse into the inner you. The essay
is the place to discuss any personal challenges you have overcome.
Maybe you've battled a learning disability, suffered the death
of a parent or sibling, or endured serious financial difficulties.
Or maybe you have exceptional leadership abilities and serve
as leaders in clubs, etc. Colleges want to know things about
you beyond your test scores and grades.
Essay questions differ from college to college. One college
might ask you to describe a personal hero or teacher who influenced
you. Another might ask you to describe a personal dilemma
or challenge. Regardless of the question, write from the heart.
Demonstrate an enthusiasm for learning. And then rewrite your
piece until it sizzles. Be sure to have a teacher or counselor
proofread it for grammar and spelling errors. Unless you are
required to interview to get into a school, this is your one
chance to "get real" with the college of your choice.
Why spend all this time writing? Colleges look carefully
at essays when making admission and scholarship decisions.
A great essay can mean money in your pocket.