Financing

Paying for community college can be overwhelming. Use the tools, resources and tips within this section to help you finance your education. From student loans to scholarships, we’ll cover the most common financial aid options available to community college students. Get money saving tips, learn more about Pell grants, and explore the federal work-study program.

View the most popular articles in Financing:

How To Pay For A Community College Education

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How To Pay For A Community College Education
We look in-depth at how you can pay for a community college education.

There are several ways to pay for a community college education. Community colleges offer affordable educational options, and various funding sources and strategies are available to help cover the costs.

Here are some common methods:

Grants and Scholarships

Federal Grants

The U.S. Department of Education offers need-based grants such as the Pell Grant, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG), and the Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grant. These grants do not require repayment.

State Grants

Many states provide financial assistance programs specifically for community college students. Check with your state's higher education agency or financial aid office for available grants.

Institutional Scholarships

Community colleges often offer their own scholarships based on academic achievement, financial need, or specific areas of study. Research and apply for scholarships offered by your college.

Financial Aid

Federal Student Aid

Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to determine eligibility for federal student aid programs, including grants, work-study opportunities, and low-interest student loans.

Work-Study Programs

Participate in a Federal Work-Study program, which provides part-time employment opportunities on or off campus to help cover educational expenses.

Employer Tuition Assistance

Some employers offer tuition assistance or reimbursement programs to employees pursuing higher education. Inquire with your employer's human resources department to explore such opportunities.

Education Tax Credits and Deductions

American Opportunity Tax Credit (AOTC)

This tax credit provides up to $2,500 per year for eligible education expenses, including tuition, fees, and course materials.

Lifetime Learning Credit (LLC)

This credit offers up to $2,000 per year

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10 Essential Money Management Tips for Community College Students

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10 Essential Money Management Tips for Community College Students
The cost of obtaining a college degree is high, especially at private universities. Students can save a great deal by choosing community college, but there are still other costs to consider. Read on to learn what costs to expect in community college and to learn some essential money management tips.

It’s common knowledge that community college is more affordable than tuition at a private university, but that may not be universally true. The average cost of tuition at community college is $3,660 per year, a cost that is twice as high as it was 30 years ago. Even if community college is less costly than a traditional four-year college, it isn’t cheap and there are other costs to consider.

In this article, we’ll determine whether community college is really the most affordable option and what costs other than tuition students should plan for. You’ll also receive some helpful tips for managing your money while attending community college.

The True Cost of a College Degree

Over the past few decades, a college degree has changed from a luxury that only the privileged were able to obtain into a necessity if you want to obtain anything more than a minimum wage-paying job. A strong work ethic is no longer enough to land a job or to keep it and many fields have begun to require an associate’s or bachelor’s degree for even entry-level positions.

Statistics show that college graduates earn 66% more than those with only a high school diploma and, over the course of a lifetime, earn about $1 billion more. It is important to consider, however, at what cost this benefit comes. A college degree has never been more necessary if you want to succeed in the workforce, but it has also never been more expensive.

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How to Pay for Community College as a Single Parent

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How to Pay for Community College as a Single Parent
Being a single parent is difficult (and expensive) but it shouldn't stop you from furthering your education. Read on to learn how to pay for community college as a single parent.

Life as a single parent is tough enough without the added burden of going to school. If you’re already shouldering a load of parenthood by yourself, you’re probably hesitant to add more to your plate. Furthering your education, however, could provide opportunities both for yourself and for your children that could change your lives for the better.

Getting a degree can open doors for you, but it does come with its own challenges and many of those challenges are financial. Raising a child is expensive, and so is going to school! Student loans are available for single parents, but they may not be the best option.

In this article, we’ll explore the benefits of community college in particular for single parents and we’ll provide some tips for making it more affordable.

The Benefits of Community College for Single Parents

Whether you’re starting college for the first time or continuing your education, community college provides many unique benefits over traditional 4-year schools, especially for single parents.

The way community colleges are structured is much more flexible than the typical college or university. Many community colleges offer both in-class and online courses with tuition prices that are much lower than traditional schools. Classes are offered both during the day and in the evening, making it easier for busy single parents to find a class schedule that fits their lifestyle. Plus, this flexibility enables single parents to keep working while attending college.

Another benefit of community college for single parents

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An In-Depth Guide to Financing Options for Community College

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An In-Depth Guide to Financing Options for Community College
Attending college is expensive but there are options for financing beyond just student loans. Keep reading to learn more.

College tuition is not cheap, and the cost seems to rise with each passing year. According to College Board, the average yearly rate for in-state tuition at a public college is over $25,000. At a private college, tuition can cost upwards of $50,000 per year.

If you are determined to go to college but you don’t have an extra $25k to $50k per year to spend, consider community college as an alternative. The average cost for community college tuition is under $5,000 for in-state students and under $10,000 for out of state students. Even if you complete your general education requirements and then transfer to a four-year school, you’ll still be saving a lot of money.

While attending community college is much more affordable than paying for a four-year university, it is still a significant expense. Keep reading to learn about your options for financing community college, including common myths about scholarships, the different grants, and tips for reducing your costs while in school.

This video offers suggestions on how to pay for college.

Debunking Common Myths About College Scholarships

The word “scholarship” is a dangling carrot for high school students preparing for college. While most colleges and universities offer them, they often seem like they are just out of reach. Though you may not realize it, many community colleges offer scholarships as well and there are always private scholarships to consider.

Unfortunately, many students

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What Are Your Options for Refinancing Student Loans?

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What Are Your Options for Refinancing Student Loans?
Many recent graduates are crippled with student loan debt, are you one of them? If so, keep reading to learn about refinancing options that could save you thousands.

If you are one of the millions of college graduates struggling with student loan debt, you might be considering an option to refinance. Even though community college is often more affordable than a traditional four-year university, school is never cheap. Depending on your debt and how much you can pay, you might be able to consolidate and/or refinance your loans to make your payments more affordable – keep reading to learn more.

Save Money by Refinancing Your Student Loans

Refinancing your loans means that you will be repaying your existing debt by taking on a new loan with new terms, often from a new creditor. Two of the most common options for refinancing your student loans are private loan refinancing and federal loan consolidation. Again, it depends on the type of loans you have and how much debt you have as well. If you can refinance through a private lender, you might be able to get a lower interest rate. At the same time, federal loan consolidation is usually a good option for people who are looking to simplify the repayment process by lumping multiple loans into a single payment plan. Loan consolidation may or may not give you a better interest rate.

If you’re thinking about refinancing your community college student loans, there are a few questions you should ask yourself first:

  1. Why are you refinancing?
  2. What are your options?
  3. What rate can I get?

The first question about why you are refinancing is very important – your goals

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Recent Articles

New Law Brings Accountability to California Community Colleges
New Law Brings Accountability to California Community Colleges
We explore Senate Bill 1456, which would hold community colleges in the state to a higher standard. How would this translate to benefits for students?
Community Colleges React to President Obamas State of the Union
Community Colleges React to President Obamas State of the Union
President Obama’s call to community colleges in his recent State of the Union Address elicited reactions from community college officials across the country. We’ll report on what some said and how some colleges are already the “community career centers” upon which Obama has called.
A to Z of Community College Certificates and Courses
A to Z of Community College Certificates and Courses
From business and healthcare to technology and skilled trades, the article showcases the breadth of options available to students seeking to enhance their knowledge, develop new skills, or pursue career advancement.

Financing

FINANCING BASICS
Build the foundation needed to navigate the community college financial aid system. Learn which schools are the most affordable, get money tips on reducing college costs, and explore the latest initiatives to make community colleges even more accessible.
How to Pay for Community College as a Single Parent
How to Pay for Community College as a Single Parent
The College Cost Reduction and Access Act of 2007
The College Cost Reduction and Access Act of 2007
How To Pay For A Community College Education
How To Pay For A Community College Education
GRANTS & SCHOLARSHIPS
There's nothing better than free money, and these articles can help you get grants and scholarships for your community college education. Acquire information on Pell grants and why you should take advantage of them, learn how you can earn money through community college writing and get the latest news on scholarships and funding.
Community College Scholarships
Community College Scholarships
Earn Money and Accolades Through Community College Writing Competitions
Earn Money and Accolades Through Community College Writing Competitions
Community College Grants
Community College Grants