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Parents won't let me do FAFSA at all? (and other related issues)

CatLover440CatLover440 Registered User Posts: 3 New Member
I have multiple issues with applying to college but I guess financial aid and money is what links them altogether. I'm 16 and I'm graduating early in June 2018, and I'm planning on going to college.
I really wanted to go to the University of Nevada, Reno (UNR) but I'd have to pay out of state tuition and fees since I live in Texas. I really liked UNR because it housed minors, and it offered the English major and creative writing focus I've always wanted.
But then my parents are like, "no you have to stay in state since you'll only be 17" ugh.
So I accept it, and I start looking into a college, Texas State University in San Marcos. But then they're like "oh thats too expensive" so now they're looking at other ones, that are further than the one to us in San Marcos, but still in Texas.
What pushes me off the edge is that they said they wanted me close due to 'safety issues'.....but why look at a college that's in Texas if it's 5-8 hours away? I don't understand.

Even before in-state was in the conversation I would mention to them about financial aid and such but they said they don't want to owe anything. So I'm kind of stuck since they don't even tell me how much they make a year, and I'm pretty sure from what I've read that it's easier to get grants and stuff when you have the FAFSA filled out? I don't know.
I thought me graduating early was supposed to be an accomplishment, but now it's feeling more like a punishment because;
1. I can't go out of state like I wanted
2. I can't even apply for financial aid
3. I finally know what I want to do yet I am basically limited on everything
4. A "gap year" isn't an option (even though I probably wouldn't do this in the first place)

(I also don't want to go anywhere that's too conservative. I'm a minority as is, I don't want to be a target, which is why I thought Houston, San Marcos, El Paso were good choices)

and I obviously can't afford it, I barely make $300ish bucks a month, and half of that goes to the car insurance. Ugh. Has anyone been here or can advise me on what to do? (Community college/staying at home until 18 is NOT an option. I have too much personal issues with my parents to list here, and that was the main reason on graduating a year early. There's a university near my house but that's too close where they'd make me live with them.)

Thank you to anyone who can give advice or something, it'll help me in some way.

Replies to: Parents won't let me do FAFSA at all? (and other related issues)

  • thumper1thumper1 Registered User Posts: 63,483 Senior Member
    edited September 12
    I would suggest you NOT graduate early. See if your high school offers dual credit courses with. Community college or something like that for your final year.

    This will make you one year older...and give you time to look at multiple college options.

    You don't mention your GPA or SAT or ACT score...but those could help you with merit aid.

    But really...I don't see any benefit to you graduating early.
  • CatLover440CatLover440 Registered User Posts: 3 New Member
    edited September 13
    Unfortunately I have worked since I was in 7th grade to graduate at 16, so it'd be really stupid and a waste of my time to not go through with what I wanted for so long. My GPA is an 88.8 and I guess if I have no other option, I'll just transfer out of state whenever I have the opportunity, if I ever even do. (My school does offer dual credit but I see/saw no point in it if most of those credits wouldn't transfer out of state.)
  • thumper1thumper1 Registered User Posts: 63,483 Senior Member
    There is a HUGE point in you staying until your senior year ends. It will,give you time to do resolve your financial issues...and you know...it might put you in a better place in terms of merit aid when you apply to colleges.

    You can't pay for OOS costs without help from your parents one way or another.
  • mamaedefamiliamamaedefamilia Registered User Posts: 2,571 Senior Member
    Would New Mexico be close enough for your parents and far enough for you? Depending on your standardized test scores you might be eligible for in-state tuition which would bring total costs to less than 20K per year, a bit less than San Marcos. You could qualify for the Amigo Scholarship with an ACT of 26/GPA 3.0 or ACT 23/GPA 3.5


    UN-Reno, IMO, is not worth the added cost for out of state tuition.
  • intparentintparent Registered User Posts: 29,509 Senior Member
    Ypur parents don't understand FAFSA and financial aid. Colleges often give need based grants to students that do not have to be paid back. You must fill out FAFSA to get them, though. Even if you qualify for loans, you don't have to take them. Also, it is you (not them) taking the federal loans.

    I agree with the advice above about staying in school. I think just because you set a goal in 7th grade doesn't mean you can't realize that it wasn't necessarily a smart goal and change it. And out of state public schools aren't usually affordable options even if your parents fill out FAFSA. You won't find any more affordable options as a transfer, either. Aid tends to be worse for transfers.

    Hsbe you and your parents run the net price calculators on the schools on your list? (However, any need based aid they show would require the FAFSA and any other paperwork the college requests).

    While your parents don't fully understand the process, I'm pretty sure your disdain for them and desperation to get away from home isn't going to help you bring them around. Honestly, I'd have rolled my eyes, too, if my kid had wanted to go OOS to UNR to study creative writing at age 16. (And my kid went to a summer program on that campus, so I am familiar with the school). My advice is to stay in school and get dual enrollment credits, put up with living at home for a couple more years, go to an in-state school that will accept the credits, and then move out of state if you want to then. If you get great test scores, you may have a few more options. Your parents might be more inclined to let you look farther afield when you are older, too.
  • beth's mombeth's mom Registered User Posts: 3,361 Senior Member
    Unfortunately I have worked since I was in 7th grade to graduate at 16, so it'd be really stupid and a waste of my time to not go through with what I wanted for so long.

    It would hardly be stupid and a waste of time. The fact that you've wanted to do this since you were 12 is irrelevant. If you read what @thumper1 suggested, it was to seek out dual enrollment classes. Those are college classes that could get you college credits. I guess the question is whether your goal and what you're working toward is a college education or getting out of your parents' house. If it's the former, I think you'd be better served, and from what you've written would give yourself more options, by staying in high school. Take that opportunity to get some college credits for free (or very little) and raise your GPA and test scores to give yourself more merit aid options.

    In the meantime, does your high school have any informational meetings for parents/students on college admissions and financial aid? If so, attend with your parents so that they can understand the process. They might be more willing to fill out FAFSA when they realize that it's necessary to get even a student loan (your repayment obligation, not theirs) or work study. If not, does your school have guidance or college counselors who could speak with your parents?
  • Mom2aphysicsgeekMom2aphysicsgeek Registered User Posts: 3,722 Senior Member
    edited September 13
    @CatLover440 Can you step back from the personal perspective you have to look at the situation objectively?

    Graduating at 16 has multiple negative drawbacks. It isn't a matter of having worked hard since 7th grade toward that goal. The question is the validity of that as good goal. Lots of kids can graduate early based on high school graduation requirements. Is it the best choice for long term goals? Kids that opt to remain high schoolers longer and take advantage of more advanced coursework end up with more competitive applications which can lead to more scholarships, more school choices, and, depending on the school, greater flexibility in courses required for their degree and/or the ability to double or triple major.

    For example, if you DE for a yr, you can graduate from high school with up to 30 hrs of college credit. If the courses are selected wisely, they might all count toward your degree. (Fwiw, it is false to assume that no credits transfer from OOS. Look online at the credit transfer info for individual schools. Here is a link for UNR. https://www.unr.edu/transfer/admission-requirements/course-equivalency I entered community college and 12 pages of CCs with already approved transfer credits came up. The lists are not complete. You can ask for individual courses to be reviewed for transferring in cr. They aren't guaranteed to transfer, but you aren't limited to the courses listed, either.)

    It isn't wasting time. It is allowing you to be older and have more academic strength.

    Fwiw, I have had kids who could technically graduate younger than 16. It was not an option for them bc we don't want our kids leaving for college before 18. That is our family's position. It hasn't limited them academically. My kids have graduated from high school having completed anywhere from 30-57 hrs toward their degrees. They have been able to grad level courses as undergrads, get involved in research, etc bc they enter beyond your avg freshman.

    Another consideration is your 88.8 avg. That may be an indication that living at home while starting college classes might be a good option so you are in a familiar environment vs dealing with college adjustment on top of college classes.
  • sybbie719sybbie719 Super Moderator Posts: 20,824 Super Moderator
    there is a difference between graduating early because you can and graduating early because you have exhausted the most rigorous curriculum your school offers and you have done exceptionally well.

    It is the later that will put you in position based on your grades and scores to have choices, including choices with merit money.

    the Cost of Attendance for UNR is $37, 625. Unless you are independently wealthy, you will not receive a penny of need based financial aid any where unless your parents minimally file the FAFSA. Some schools will require addition forms.

    I agree with others about dual enrollment while you are in high school. This would give you an opportunity to complete at least one year of college for free. If money is an issue, you can always sell the cost savings to your parents.

    You must learn how to operate from a position of strenght when advocating for yourself.
  • OspreyCV22OspreyCV22 Registered User Posts: 1,625 Senior Member
    Some parents won't fill out the FAFSA because they are illegal aliens or they haven't been filing income taxes. They will have to have last year's taxes on file for FAFSA to work.

    In your position you really should take as many dual enrollment credits through a community college as possible. It appears you have no way to pay for college and staying in high school an extra year would mean a free year of college. Maybe you could get your GPA high enough to qualify for some scholarships. Staying in state is usually the most cost effective plan.
  • mom2collegekidsmom2collegekids Registered User Posts: 82,545 Senior Member
    Unfortunately I have worked since I was in 7th grade to graduate at 16, so it'd be really stupid and a waste of my time to not go through with what I wanted for so long. My GPA is an 88.8

    No it would not be stupid....not at all.

    And your GPA doesn't really warrant graduating early. Frankly, maybe if you had focused on being in high school for 4 years, you'd have a better GPA. It appears that your GPA suffered due to trying to cram everything in. Sometimes, trying to do things too quickly can backfire.
  • billcshobillcsho Registered User Posts: 16,686 Senior Member
    It would be a better idea if you can get transferrable dual enrollment credit while in high school which may allow you to graduate early in college. This would make much more sense and allow more time for your parent to have a financial plan for your college.
  • HRSMomHRSMom Registered User Posts: 4,188 Senior Member
    You should stay in HS simply to bring up your GPA.

    Any guess about their income level?
  • CatLover440CatLover440 Registered User Posts: 3 New Member
    Lol people on here are so rude, making this thread was such a mistake. It's too late for me to put a hold on graduating early, and thanks to everyone who just reminded me even more how much of a terrible idea it was to go through with it.
    I worked hard enough to graduate at 16, and I personally made the decision to not do any dual credit, and I can't go back and "fix" it or whatever. I'm not trying to get into some elite college, so thanks for reading my thread oh-so thoroughly.
    Thank you mamadefamilia to actually giving me something I can use and look into, rather than make me feel bad for going through with a long term goal.
    Graduating early was not because I wanted to get into a "good school", but because of the emotional stress and anxiety I have to be put through every single day. Next time, consider another person's perspective rather than completely belittling their life.
This discussion has been closed.