Advice on Financial Independence


<p>I've posted here for help before and have gotten very useful help and information each time so I guess I'm back.
Some of you might remember me----for background, check the thread "Parent threatening to withdraw tuition". It's out there...somewhere...on the internet...god my identity is totally at risk online here. Oh well I'll just never run for office. Or marry anyone who does.</p>

<p>So I've been informed by my mother that I've officially been cut off. She already paid for fall semester and my ticket back to college. But after that I'm on my own. I've already been in contact with financial aid and am in the process of becoming a self-supporting student, though I don't know if that will go through. Part of me hopes that my mom changes her mind, but I don't know if she will. Hopefully she will and this thread will be for naught. But in the meantime, I've got finances to worry about.</p>

<p>I have some money in my back account that I saved from my summer job in 2007 and all the money I earned this past summer(which wasn't too much, because I did a job that paid for room&board also) and I've got a job for the school year. </p>

<p>But I'm really scared and feel rather alone. I'm not on speaking terms with father, and I'm definitely better off not being in contact with him. I don't have aunts or uncles or anyone that I can turn to or any relatives really or any family friends or any adults figures. I've got my friends, but they're my age. Some have offered to give me some of their own money(and give, not lend) to help me make it, which is great and I'm really thankful for it. But I'm still...well...scared.</p>

<p>It won't let me edit...</p>

<p>I realize that a lot of people have it worse off than me, so I don't mean to strike a dramatic 'poor me' tone. I know there are plenty of people out there who have to support themselves from a young age on and that the only reason why it's such a big deal for me is because I grew up in a family where I never had to worry about finances. Yeah. Just wanted to tag that on.</p>

<p>I've seen several people go through your situation, and believe me, I would never think that you were melodramatic to be scared or upset by this.</p>

<p>If you can get your finaid office to consider you financially independent from your parents, that's a huge coup right there and will help you a lot (though I would count on it - I only personally know one person who pulled it off). Obviously, you will still have to work to pay your other expenses. If you still have a chance to submit material to the finaid office...document any and all instances of abuse.</p>

<p>Look into Stafford loans. Unfortunately, they will not consider you an independent student, so the amount that you get will be less than what you could get if their rules weren't so...okay, not going to go on that tangent. But you can still get a lot from them. If your parents are financially well-off, you may only be able to get unsubsidized ones, though.</p>

<p>If you are not yet a junior in college, qualify for military service, and your school has or is affiliated with some other school's ROTC program, consider doing ROTC. If you can get a two-year ROTC scholarship, it will pay your tuition, textbook costs, and a small stipend for your final two years, in exchange for four years' active duty as a commissioned officer and four years in the Reserves.</p>

<p>If you're a science major and a strong student, you can apply for stuff like the SMART scholarship to fund you.</p>

<p>You may end up having to either take out a lot of loans or take time off from college, or both.</p>

<p>My university costs around $50,000 a year once you factor in all expenses such as room&board. I'm already taking out loans offered through my financial aid package pre-my mom stopping to pay. Though the financial aid office has told me that it's unlikely I'll get anything. So I guess my option is to do well this semester, drop out, and uh find my way somehow.</p>

So I guess my option is to do well this semester, drop out, and uh find my way somehow.


<p>Note that if you leave voluntarily, at most colleges, it's pretty straightforward to get back in. Of course, with the sort of job you might end up with in your time off, you'll have trouble earning enough to pay for your present expenses and future college.</p>

<p>What about the stuff I mentioned, like ROTC or scholarships/fellowships?</p>

<p>If your school has a counseling office, you might want to talk to them. Aside from helping you deal with the emotional aspects of your situation, they might be able to help you find other sources of financial help. They probably know the bureaucracy better than you or I or most others here.</p>

<p>I had a weak semester last semester. Very weak. (This has nothing to do with my disagreements with my mom---she doesn't care.) Don't have a major either. And it probably won't be a science one either. So I'm unlikely to qualify for scholarships. </p>

<p>I've had relatives do ROTC and they all agree that it's not for me. I'm quite small(in height and stature) and weak and I'm quite terrified.</p>