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Really need some help/insight

cactushousecactushouse 0 replies1 threads New Member
Hi all! IMPORTANT: I am primarily responsible for funding my education, not my parents

Let me start by saying the past two years or so have been a general disaster. Applied in fall 2018 to enter college as a freshman fall 2019. Process went smoothly, got accepted into a handful of good schools and chose to attend Creighton U in NE b/c it was the most affordable option. I don't mean affordable as inexpensive, it was still really difficult to make ends meet and I worked close to full time all year.

Anyway -- this spring my cost of attendance shot up almost $10K. Okay, big setback. I applied to my state school to be safe, cut corners, talked to my family and found a way to make it work. Then COVID-19 happened and when the stocks dropped so did our savings. This changed college from something I could hardly pay for to something that, at this point, is just about impossible.

So I'll just go to my cheaper state school right? Wrong! My family EFC was $6K more than the total cost of attendance. I got 0 aid. Like absolutely nothing. Again, importantly, my parents are not going to give me all of their money and now they can't anyway even if they wanted to.

I really need guidance on what to do. It feels like I'm constantly getting pranked. Should I take a gap year? Take out private loans? Drop out and become a sherpa? I'm so lost and confused and just doing my best not to panic.
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Replies to: Really need some help/insight

  • twoinanddonetwoinanddone 24821 replies20 threads Senior Member
    Why did the COA go up by $10k? Did you lose a scholarship? Can you appeal that decision?

    Yes, the stock market recently took a drop, but that was after an historic gain. In Jan 2017, stock market was at ~19k. It then went up to 30k, and today it is at about 22k. So, if you (parents) bought huge amounts of stocks in 2019, you did lose money. Otherwise they lost profits and are now slight ahead of where they were 3 years ago. No one wants to sell stock when they've tasted success of the bull market, but there really hasn't been a big drop.

    Still, you have to look at how much money you have now for school. Is your public option cheaper than Creighton? FA at most public schools is based on the FAFSA, and that's based on the family income (for 2020-21) on 2018 income. If there has been a lost job you can ask for reconsideration but stock market losses aren't usually a good reason for reconsideration. With the EFC $6k more than the cost of the public school, very unlikely that you'll be getting need based aid.
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  • NJdad07090NJdad07090 613 replies8 threads Member
    we need some details, what aid you were getting , where are you now? Loans, work study pell grants...
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  • coolguy40coolguy40 2910 replies8 threads Senior Member
    That sucks! You're demonstrating the very scenario I've been warning kids about...and you're the one trying to be responsible. The only thing you can do in your scenario is to take a reboot and spend a year at community college. This will hopefully free-up some money so you can spend the last 2 years at your state university.

    A gap year might be a good idea. You can potentially cover the EFC doing that. You'll have to work your butt off, but in the end it's worth it.
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  • happymomof1happymomof1 30759 replies197 threads Senior Member
    Taking time off could make good sense. The next few months are going to be a mess.
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