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Parsons School of Design worth it?

photoforrealphotoforreal Registered User Posts: 45 Junior Member
I was accepted today to Parsons in NYC to study photography. I received $18,000 per academic year ($72,000 after four years). The cost of Parsons is over $66,000 per year ($264,000 for four years). I have applied for many out side scholarships and have yet to win any. My family has little money but we are not poor enough to get a lot from FAFSA. The school is in NYC and photographers tend to make more there than anywhere.

Will the education and networking be worth $264,000?

Also if I don't have enough out of pocket to go for a year how do I go about filling that gap between school given loans and my scholarship? (i.e if it costs $66k and I only have 20k covered by scholarship and school loans?) Thanks I'd appreciate any help my parents struggle to understand the aid as well. :)
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Replies to: Parsons School of Design worth it?

  • photoforrealphotoforreal Registered User Posts: 45 Junior Member
    That includes dorm+out of state fees. Do out of state fees go away after the first year?
  • mom2collegekidsmom2collegekids Forum Champion Financial Aid, Forum Champion Alabama Posts: 83,817 Forum Champion
    edited March 13
    ^^
    Parsons is a private univ, not a public one. There are no OOS fees. The high tuition is for everyone.

    It sounds like this school will not be affordable. There isn’t a money tree out there.


    What is your FAFSA EFC? How much will your family pay???
  • photoforrealphotoforreal Registered User Posts: 45 Junior Member
    My EFC is 11k but they have literally nothing to offer me. We live paycheck to paycheck. :(
  • photoforrealphotoforreal Registered User Posts: 45 Junior Member
    Are there outside loans? I can get or does it not work like that?
  • mom2collegekidsmom2collegekids Forum Champion Financial Aid, Forum Champion Alabama Posts: 83,817 Forum Champion
    edited March 13
    Ok...so the reality is......parsons is not affordable. Where did you apply that you can afford?
  • photoforrealphotoforreal Registered User Posts: 45 Junior Member
    Community college was my default so I guess I'll have to settle...
  • photoforrealphotoforreal Registered User Posts: 45 Junior Member
    I don't understand how people do it though. Many people are middle class like me and attend these schools? What am I missing?
  • aunt beaaunt bea Registered User Posts: 9,233 Senior Member
    Most kids don't go to private universities because they are too expensive. Students go to their in-state publics or transfer from CC's. It doesn't matter where you go to school because a job is a job if you have a degree.

    Parents, like me and my husband, have saved since our three children were little through our State's 529 account. It wasn't much money, but we tried. We currently save as much as we can; we drive old cars, make home repairs ourselves and limit our "leisure" expenses. Our children were all required to work each summer to contribute to their accounts. It has not been easy, but we've all made it work.

    You are only eligible for limited federal loan money per year:
    Freshman: $5500
    Sophomore: $6500
    Junior: $7500
    Senior: $7500
    It is distributed by semester (so Freshman year, Fall, you get $2750).

    If your parents live paycheck to paycheck, they will not be eligible for large parent loans, to fund this school, because the banks won't loan these large amounts.
  • photoforrealphotoforreal Registered User Posts: 45 Junior Member
    Unfortunately my parents saved $0. I just started working but it doesn't pay much. So even with the minimum federal loan I can't make ends meet. I wanted to study in NYC because photographers earn more there and the connections would've been great. Most succesfull photographers study in NYC. Thanks for helping I'm very very very sad because this really was my dream school. My parents make to much to earn need based aid but to little to pay for it. I'm just sad.
  • aunt beaaunt bea Registered User Posts: 9,233 Senior Member
    You can go to school outside of NY and get connections through your local professors. You'd be surprised how many connections the local schools have.
    You don't have to be in NY to get a job in NY.
  • photoforrealphotoforreal Registered User Posts: 45 Junior Member
    Very true but I have a constant fear of dying before I can be successful. I didn't want to wait here to eventually get a job in NYC. You know the whole do it before its to late philosophy. I don't really have an option now though. Thanks I hope I can get a job there one day.
  • sybbie719sybbie719 Super Moderator Posts: 22,083 Super Moderator
    edited March 13
    It is not a matter of your parents making too much for need based aid, unless you are an HEOP student (and Parson takes in about 3 a year) the school does not give a lot of money to anyone.

    Even if you had a 0 EFC you would have gotten $5950 from PELL , which is still not making oarson’s affordable.

    I have a student who is doing amazing work in photography - he started at CC then transferred to SUNY as a fine arts major.
    Post edited by sybbie719 on
  • mom2collegekidsmom2collegekids Forum Champion Financial Aid, Forum Champion Alabama Posts: 83,817 Forum Champion
    edited March 13
    Very likely, parsons does not have many students attending whose parents can’t/won’t pay their EFC or more. Your parents won’t pay anything. That’s a huge hurdle.

    Btw...most kids don’t go away to college. Most commute to their local cc or state school.

    Likely, the students at parsons are largely from affluent families that pay.

    If you’re talking about middle class students attending OTHER pricey schools, those schools likely give great need-based aid. Parsons does not do that.

    That said, a number of students have college funds that their parents started when they were babies....and/or they have grandparents who help pay.


    As for large loans. Your parents would have to qualify and cosign for such large loans. Not only is that very risky for them, which is why most parents will not do that, but photographers don’t usually earn enough to pay the loans back. And since they live paycheck to paycheck, banks aren’t going to loan to them anyway....and I doubt they’d borrow for you anyway.

    What do you think the salaries are for newish photography grads from Parsons????
  • mom2collegekidsmom2collegekids Forum Champion Financial Aid, Forum Champion Alabama Posts: 83,817 Forum Champion
    My parents make to much to earn need based aid but to little to pay for it. I'm just sad.

    Not really. Even if your parents only earned $25k per year, Parsons still doesn’t have the money to give you. And federal aid (after filling out FAFSA) is not much aid at all. You still wouldn’t have enough money. Schools like parsons are filled with students whose families can PAY
  • mommdcmommdc Registered User Posts: 10,397 Senior Member
    edited March 13
    Which state are you from? There are other schools that you could go to that are more affordable.
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