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Cannot Go to College? Please Help.

DoubleFantasyDoubleFantasy Registered User Posts: 25 New Member
Please hear me out for a bit.

Ok, so I have a rather difficult situation on my hands, and I honestly do not know how to go about it. I really want to go to college for accounting (and get my CPA), but I really do not have the money to do so. Even with the financial aid I begged for, all the colleges I applied to will in the long run (4 years) cost around 60k (even with commuting. I also want good internships). I simply cannot afford this, not to mention my parents REFUSE to do the FAFSA no matter how much I beg them. They said they wouldn't even help me pay for community college. They saved literally 0$ for my college, so I would be entirely on my own if I went to college (they told me they would not help me). They also refuse to talk to any of the financial aid officers and scold me for reminding them to do so. My parents also make above 70k (but they spend like no tomorrow and couldn't care less about my college), so I couldn't even qualify for much aid anyways. I have to buy my own car, my own insurance, my own everything essentially.

I am in a difficult situation and am afraid of failure. I know college isn't a ticket to success, but after much deliberation, I know this is something I WANT to do. But there are so many external factors obstructing my goal that I have no idea what to do at this point. The loans are too large and the interest rates are incredibly criminal. I am a long run thinking person, not short run, and the return on investment seems pretty mediocre, if not very negative.

Plus, I cannot even do military because of my asthma.

Can you guys give me any suggestions? I would greatly appreciate your input if you are able to do so. I realize I may be asking much and may seem like I just want everything given to me, but I really want some guidance. I have no family to help me and am pretty much alone as a person.
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Replies to: Cannot Go to College? Please Help.

  • shawnspencershawnspencer Registered User Posts: 3,110 Senior Member
    There may be some merit scholarships that you would qualify for. What are your grades, standardized test scores, and home state?
  • HImomHImom Registered User Posts: 32,854 Senior Member
    What do your parents want you to do and propose for you once you graduate from HS? Is there any counselor at your HS that you have spoken with about any training programs you may qualify for?
  • MYOS1634MYOS1634 Registered User Posts: 38,820 Senior Member
    Tell your parents that filling out the FAFSA does not oblige them to anything. It just allows *you* to get loans.

    Going to college will depend on your test scores, basically. Register for the next session offered in your state and prep like your life depends on it. Work systematically to understand the format, the concepts they test, the way they word their answers, the way you get misled into the wrong one - for each question you missed, do 10 similar to it until you get it right every single time. It's going to be long and boring but that's your way out.

    What state do you live in? What's your GPA (w and uw)? test scores? Any achievement?
    Do you have a job?

    Do your parents plan to kick you out when you turn 18 or will they let you live at home? (If you don't know yet, don't broach the question until you have a plan).
  • bopperbopper Forum Champion CWRU Posts: 11,938 Forum Champion
    edited January 8
    Talk to your Guidance Counselor...see if you can have them explain to your parents that filling out the FAFSA is necessary to see if you can get scholarships so they don't have to pay.
    Also talk to them about strategies for getting your parents on board.

    Also how is your GPA/SAT? Some states let you go to community college free if you are in the top 15% of your class.

    Take Dual Enrollment courses in HS so you get some college credits for free.

    Also check this out:
    https://www.fastweb.com/financial-aid/articles/what-can-you-do-if-your-parents-won-t-file-the-fafsa-or-help-pay-for-college

    also
    What to do if your parents refuse to complete financial aid forms.
    Remind your parents that submitting the forms does not obligate them to provide support, but that if they refuse to file the FAFSA, you will not be eligible for any need-based aid on your own.
    College financial aid administrators are permitted to offer dependent students an unsubsidized Stafford loan without requiring the parents to file a FAFSA, provided that the financial aid administrator verifies that the parents have ended financial support and will not file the FAFSA. The unsubsidized Stafford loan is not based on financial need and is a loan, but at least it's something to help you pay for school.

    But if you can convince your parents to file the FAFSA, you might qualify for need-based aid, such as the subsidized Stafford loan, Perkins loan, and Pell Grant, as well as institutional aid. By not filing the FAFSA, they prevent you from getting any of this aid.

    If your parents are concerned about privacy, remind them that the confidentiality of student records, including financial aid applications, is protected by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). In particular, schools will not disclose information submitted by the parent to the student (or to the parent's ex-spouse).

    Talk to the financial aid administrator at your college. Sometimes they are able to intercede with the parents and convince them to complete the FAFSA. Sometimes it helps to have a third party talk with your parents if the atmosphere between you and your parents is too charged with emotion.

  • intparentintparent Registered User Posts: 35,256 Senior Member
    edited January 8
    I agree with getting your GC to talk to your parents about at least filling out the FAFSA. However... some parents balk at it because they are doing something shady with their taxes and don't want to get caught. It isn't the only reason they might not want to do it, but it could be part of it.
    Some states let you go to community college free if you are in the top 15% of your class.

    Look into this. If you don't live in one of these states, as a last resort, move to one of those states and work for a year to be eligible to do this if the state rules will allow it. (But you need to look at the state rules).

    If you provide GPA and test scores, we might have some other suggestions. I can see from your other threads you have a very rigorous schedule and your state appears to be PA. If you have good grades and decent test scores, there might be some choices. But you have to give us info.
  • MYOS1634MYOS1634 Registered User Posts: 38,820 Senior Member
    Also, are you a senior or a junior?
  • coolguy40coolguy40 Registered User Posts: 1,802 Senior Member
    edited January 8
    Don't stress. There's always a way to pay for college. If you want to keep the debt down, spend your first 2 years at a community college. You're an independent adult. Fill out the FAFSA on your own and put down 0 for parental contribution. Work like crazy over the summers and work part time during the semester. This should give enough financial aid to pay for your tuition books and fees with minimal or zero loans. When you're ready, transfer to a university and finish your accounting degree. The loans will be worth it, but they won't be anywhere near 60k if you go to a community college for your first 2 years.
  • AroundHereAroundHere Registered User Posts: 3,590 Senior Member
    @coolguy40 If it were that simple, no parent would fill out the FAFSA!

    OP: Read through all the ways of becoming independent and see if any would apply to you.

    https://studentaid.ed.gov/sa/sites/default/files/fafsa-dependency.pdf

    Otherwise, you are pretty much stuck until age 24 when you can get student loans and federal aid. You need to make a living for the next six years though -- look at the local community college for the one or two year programs that lead to the best paycheck. Do one of those and start making and saving money. When you have more money, start going to college transfer classes at the community college part time after work, and get the first two years of accounting degree work done.

    Then figure out how to transfer.

    Or, do you have any extended family members who would assist you? (Aunts, uncles, cousins, grandparents?) The last chance option is financial aid officer professional judgment. It is usually used for children who have zero means of contacting one or both parents. However, it can be used if your parents are abusive drug addicts or other extreme circumstances as well.
  • intparentintparent Registered User Posts: 35,256 Senior Member
    @coolguy, that isn't helpful. You can't just not have your parents fill out FAFSA. They have to report income and assets, or the OP can't even take their federal loans. And no college will provide need based aid without it.
  • TomSrOfBostonTomSrOfBoston Registered User Posts: 14,227 Senior Member
    You state that your parents earn "well over $70,000/year". Higher income parents who refuse to fill out FAFSA are often trying to hide something about their finances, and not from you.
  • NASA2014NASA2014 Registered User Posts: 2,332 Senior Member
    I hate when OP never comes back. We want to help you! please come back, don't let your parents discourage you.
  • Marg532Marg532 Registered User Posts: 448 Member
    Start out at a community college, then transfer to one of your state universities, which have lower tuition for in-state students than if you were to go to an OOS public or a private. Work your butt off at a job over the summers and over breaks, plus work part time during the school years if you can. Apply to a bunch of private scholarships if you need to, and definitely look into any local scholarships that you can apply to in your area (your guidance counselor will usually have information about these).

    The community college route may not seem glamorous, and state schools may seem "lesser" than other universities, but what you need to think about in the long run is your financial stability (and your sanity) rather than prestige and comparing yourself to classmates or even other people on CC
  • ucbalumnusucbalumnus Registered User Posts: 72,078 Senior Member
    edited January 8
    In some states, even community college may be too expensive, especially if the student has no access to federal direct loans due to parental refusal to do FAFSA.

    If the student has high enough stats, there may be some full ride (not just full tuition) merit scholarships that are not dependent on financial need or FAFSA. But the student cannot be too picky (and if the student is already a high school senior, deadlines may be passing).
  • intparentintparent Registered User Posts: 35,256 Senior Member
    Looking at other posts, the OP has been looking at in state schools. They live in PA where public universities, even non-flagships, are expensive even for in-state students, especially those with uncooperative parents. @NASA2014, it has been less than 24 hours on a weekday. Cut them some slack.
  • DoubleFantasyDoubleFantasy Registered User Posts: 25 New Member
    edited January 8
    @NASA2014 Sorry for the delay, really busy with an organic chemistry project.

    I have an SAT score of 1350, and a GPA of 3.7 or 4.0 (depending which conversion table you use). I have 12 AP classes up my belt as well.

    Still though, the stuff's gonna be expensive, even w/ community college b/c of my parents not doing the FAFSA and refusing to pay a dime for anything in terms of college or a vehicle to travel to college.

    Let's just say the financial aid officers haven't been very favorable towards me...not to mention my parents refuse to talk to any of them as well.
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