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I can't afford to send my kid to a good uni in the USA, so are European universities alternatives?

HappyBird9HappyBird9 2 replies1 threads New Member
Hello. We are a homeschooling family living the USA. I was born in Slovakia, and my wife is from Mexico. My kid is in 11th grade, and is pretty committed to school. She does half virtual school, and half homeschool curriculum. She prefers online. Anyways, we are one of those families that make too much for financial aid but too little to actually pay for college. Even the local public college costs around $18,000 a year. It is around 40 minutes away (we live in a rural-ish area.) I have a pretty high income (compared to the area we live in, it is pretty poor.) But almost all that income goes back into my business that I am starting. I can't spend 15k a year on college.

We can afford the local community college (it's pretty cheap, around $3,000) but I want something better for my daughter. She is very outgoing and would love to to go to a uni away from home, but she is fine with going to a uni here. She found a good university with my mother lives (in Slovaka) and brought it up asking if that is even a possibility. She would live with my mom in Slovakia, and the tuition is pretty minimal.

I am a bit worried. Can she get a job in the USA if she has a foreign degree? She wants to become an immigration lawyer. If she majors in something like History or Psychology, can she come back to the USA with a foreign degree and go to law school? Is going to a European university a good idea?

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Replies to: I can't afford to send my kid to a good uni in the USA, so are European universities alternatives?

  • SybyllaSybylla 4910 replies59 threads Senior Member
    What are her stats like? What state are you in?
    Slovakia is pretty specific. "Europe" is not, but really you are looking just at Slovakia, right?
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  • 3scoutsmom3scoutsmom 5668 replies338 threads Senior Member
    If she can do well on the Oct PSAT she can get some full ride scholarships at some state schools.
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  • thumper1thumper1 78281 replies3528 threads Senior Member
    Doesn't she speak the language fluently? Or do they teach college courses in English?
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  • HappyBird9HappyBird9 2 replies1 threads New Member
    We are in Tennessee. We are open to all of Europe, but we see Slovakia as a better option because I feel like accommodation in Europe would be expensive. She has a 4.0, no AP courses because she will be in Mexico around May. All her online courses are honors. She took the PSAT as a 10th grader, and she got 1300. She is going to take the SATs this year in December, and the PSATs in October.
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  • HappyBird9HappyBird9 2 replies1 threads New Member
    They teach courses in English! She speaks Slovak, but she doesn't know how to write essays in Slovak. Like, she can speak and a have a conversation, but she will have a hard time writing in Slovak. There are English courses.
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  • jonrijonri 7367 replies135 threads Senior Member
    edited September 2017
    A few questions.

    Is your D a Slovakian citizen?

    If not, a quick google search indicates she will have to apply for a temporary residence visa and to get one of these, she has to be able to demonstrate fluency in the language. Can she?

    If she isn't a citizen, are you sure the minimal fees for the university are available to non-citizens? If she is a citizen, are they available to citizens who have not lived in the country before applying?

    I think you need to answer these questions before you worry about law school admissions.

    Maybe you've already figured all this out. I'm writing just in case you haven't.

    Here's some general info. https://www.educations.com/study-guides/europe/study-in-slovakia/
    edited September 2017
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  • sciencenerdsciencenerd 1598 replies236 threads Senior Member
    I wouldn't discount community colleges right away.

    Many of them offer the lower level classes at a cheaper rate and with smaller classes that your daughter could benefit from. She could transfer to a 4-year after 2 or even one year.

    Socially, there would be a big difference between European and US colleges and in the fact that she would be coming back to the states after college.

    Could she go part time at one of the schools in your state?
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  • International DadInternational Dad 344 replies10 threads Member
    edited September 2017
    I would not recommend studying outside the USA if she wants to continue studies here, very surely she needs to homologate the European university title and it is very certain that they will not be worth many subjects and will have to repeat them to receive their degree.

    Totally agree with @3scoutsmom
    The solution is apply to State University looking for a full ride.
    edited September 2017
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  • ucbalumnusucbalumnus 83381 replies741 threads Senior Member
    edited September 2017
    HappyBird9 wrote:
    She has a 4.0, no AP courses because she will be in Mexico around May. All her online courses are honors. She took the PSAT as a 10th grader, and she got 1300. She is going to take the SATs this year in December, and the PSATs in October.

    If she does well enough on the PSAT for National Merit, there may be some full ride scholarship opportunities based on that:
    http://nmfscholarships.yolasite.com/ (verify on school web sites)

    There may be other full ride scholarship opportunities (not National Merit based) to look into (again verify on school web sites):
    https://talk.collegeconfidential.com/discussion/comment/20798968/#Comment_20798968
    http://competitivefulltuition.yolasite.com/
    edited September 2017
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  • ucbalumnusucbalumnus 83381 replies741 threads Senior Member
    https://bannerssb.utk.edu/kbanpr/utk_trans_course_eqv.P_State_Inst indicates that community colleges in Tennessee may offer courses that transfer to the University of Tennessee, so 2 years at community college followed by 2 years at a four year school may be doable and less expensive than 4 years at a four year school.
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  • intparentintparent 36291 replies644 threads Senior Member
    Isn't community college free in Tennessee? (Thought I remembered this, but not sure what "free" really means -- maybe you are counting books, transportation, etc. to get to that $3,000 number).
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  • jupiter98jupiter98 328 replies2 threads Member
    edited September 2017
    Some states allow Law graduates from other countries to sit the bar. Investigate that route.
    edited September 2017
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  • mom2collegekidsmom2collegekids Forum Champion Financial Aid, Forum Champion Alabama 84339 replies1049 threads Forum Champion
    Would she qualify for HOPE in Tenn? If you add HOPE to some merit at a Tenn school, it could be affordable with a fed student loan and some money from you.
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  • AroundHereAroundHere 3600 replies22 threads Senior Member
    First, have you run the net price calculators on a few schools to make sure that you do not qualify for financial aid? Try a few state campuses and maybe a generous private school like Vandy. It's pretty likely you're correct since the formulas aren't particularly generous with business owners, but run the numbers to make sure. Every college website is required to have a net price calculator somewhere so use the search function if it is not obvious.

    And, once you have her PSAT and SAT test scores, you can look into merit aid as others have suggested.

    If paying for an undergraduate degree is difficult, paying for law school may be even more so. Perhaps you should encourage her to explore other ways to serve the immigrant community besides as a lawyer?
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  • boudersbouders 2677 replies185 threads Senior Member
    If she has a degree from Slovakia, going to law school in the US will be difficult. Her transcript will have to be assessed by LSAC and they will give it a score which is descriptive, not numerical. eg superior, above average, average etc. Even with a superior score, a degree from Slovakia will make it very difficult to gain admission to a US law school.

    In addition law school is just as expensive as an undergraduate degree (around $300K by the time she goes). However, there are large scholarships, including full rides available for students that the institution deems desirable. Again, those free rides are going to be difficult to get with a degree from Slovakia. If she goes to Slovakia, she will be hampering her ability to get in and pay for law school.

    If she gets a law degree from Slovakia and wishes to return to the US and practice law, she will have to pass the bar in her US state. Passing the bar without the instruction in US law will be difficult. But, there are other administrative hoops to jump through as well, which can take a lot of time. She may have a great degree of difficulty getting hired with a non-US degree.
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  • twoinanddonetwoinanddone 24777 replies20 threads Senior Member
    Some states allow Law graduates from other countries to sit the bar. Investigate that route.

    I read that as she'd do undergrad in Eur but then return to the US for law school. That's fine if the Eur college is accredited and she can be admitted to a US law school.
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  • MACmiracleMACmiracle 1556 replies30 threads Senior Member
    @MYOS1634 Will the NPCs be reliable if he has his own business as appears to be the case?
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