Education has never been more important than it is at this point in time. With millions scrambling for jobs, the only thing that will make you stand out above the rest is a higher degree and a better education. The problem is that it can be exceedingly difficult to study without ending up in debt, something that should be avoided at all costs.
Fortunately, there are several ways to fund your education without taking out a loan to do so. Whether you are a recent graduate or a parent heading back to school, you will find that it is possible to get that degree without paying for the rest of your life.
1. Get a scholarship. These aren’t easy to get because you will be in competition with plenty of other people. However, if you focus on the scholarships or grants that are specific in their requirements, such as for single moms, you will have a better chance. There is aid available to those with disabilities, single parents, mature students, etc. Make sure you fill out all the paperwork carefully so you can get it in on time and stay far away from student loans. Grants and scholarships are like a gift, because you don’t need to repay them, but loans will haunt you for decades.
2. Find a telecommute job. There are many jobs now that will allow you to work your own hours and provide you the income necessary to stay in school. Whether you are interested in writing, editing, graphic design or transcription, there are positions that will allow you to work during your free hours. It can be difficult to hold down an extra job, particularly if you are already working a full time one in addition to school.
3. Join the Reserves. The military often pays for schooling for those who are willing to do their time for their country. Obviously, this brings with it larger risks, so you will need to consider things very carefully. For anyone who has thought about joining the military, however, this could be a good way to get an education and give something back to your country. Not everyone is up for it, but it could be something to look into.
4. Offer your services as a tutor. Colleges and universities are full of students who are unable to understand everything they are taught. If you can help someone understand their Chemistry homework well enough to help them pass, you could have a great job. It would be on campus, so you can work between classes and often pay most, if not all, your tuition costs.
5. Save your money. If you just can’t manage to pay for school right now, then it might be best to put your plans on hold. By waiting a year or two to continue your studies, you will be able to put some money into savings. During that time, work extra to bring in more cash that you can sock away. Being able to pay for your education out of your own pocket is something that will make you feel great.
When you are trying to figure out how to fund your education during these difficult financial times, you might want to consider other options. Do you need to attend Harvard, for example? You will pay far less and still earn a great degree at a smaller university or even a college.
Online universities are another option. While they can still be somewhat expensive, they do let you study at odd hours. This can be invaluable if you are working a full time job or if you have two jobs. Online education is also a lifesaver for parents who can’t afford to spend more hours out of the house. This way, they can study while keeping an eye on the kids, even if that means studying at night.
With your education being so much more important now that there is so much competition in the job market, it pays to learn. Make sure you don’t get left behind in a dead end job or worse, without any job at all. You can fund your education via one of these methods and make a better life for yourself.