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.
Since 1992, the average amount a student
Many people will tell you that you can’t get a good job without an education, specifically a college education. Unless you are lucky enough to receive a generous scholarship or help from family, you may be left paying for school on your own and you may need to take out a few student loans, or a lot of them. Unfortunately, the cost of tuition continues to rise each year and the average salary for an entry-level job just isn’t enough to pay off student loans for many people. If you are thinking about starting school, or if you already have, do yourself a favor and follow some of these simple tips for minimizing your educational debt while you are in school so that your loans are more manageable when you graduate.
Shocking Student Loan Statistics
According to the most recent reports for 2016, the total amount of student loan debt in the United States is about $1.23 trillion and that number is divided over more than 43 million Americans. The average graduate for the class of 2016 will be graduating with more than $37,000 in student loan debt, that number is up by a full 6% from last year. When it comes to student loans, there are a wide variety of different types and each type of loan has its own interest rates and rules for repayment. Direct loans make up the largest chunk of student loan debt with a total of over $840 billion divided over nearly 30 million borrowers.
Tax assistance at the local community college is generally offered through the IRS Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program, also known as VITA. According to the IRS website, this program is available to anyone who earns $50,000 or less and requires assistance filing their tax returns. The volunteers that work with VITA are trained in IRS guidelines and are IRS certified to offer tax advice on issues such as earned income tax credit, child tax credits, and other tax deductions.
We'll give a brief overview of the volunteer program and who it helps, as well as list a few of the community colleges that have come alongside the IRS to help Americans get their taxes filed on time.
Most of the VITA stations are located at community places like libraries, schools and shopping malls. Community colleges are another option where VITA services might be provided.
- Families with incomes