CC Tips for Students Who Want to Reduce College Debt

<p>Looking for tips from parents who had to take out loans and/or work their way through college. </p>

<p>So many CC parents discourage kids from taking out loans but I wonder how many actually did it themselves.</p>

<p>I took out loans for private university because I wanted to go there and my parents didn't want me too--and mostly because two atttorneys told me the money would be easy to pay back and they were right! To whittle down the loan amount I also took a year off, did the RA thing, worked summers, was an au pair for a year etc etc. </p>

<p>I NEVER think about that money now. NEVER. </p>

<p>Now, I think about much bigger sums of money, ::eek::! THe $60k tax bill coming up, the $75k house deposit, the $65k tuition bills, the $8m apartment tower on our boards/screens and so on and so forth. </p>

<p>So please, add to the list, share your stories of how you worked your way through it. Students too, please!</p>

<p>**1. Work Summers and Christmas break. Find high paying jobs in factories or landscaping firms. Don't spend that money!</p>

<ol>
<li><p>Take a year off and live at home and work to save money. I created my own internship.</p></li>
<li><p>Be a Dorm advisor. Up to an $8k savings in junior year.**</p></li>
</ol>

<p>Live in an off-campus dive (cheap rent) and feed yourself by eating lots of cereal/milk, and work in food service place (free eats.)</p>

<p>**1. Work Summers and Christmas break. Find high paying jobs in factories or landscaping firms. Don't spend that money!</p>

<ol>
<li><p>Take a year off and live at home and work to save money. I created my own internship.</p></li>
<li><p>Be a Dorm advisor. Up to an $8k savings in junior year.</p></li>
<li><p>Live in an off-campus dive (cheap rent) and feed yourself by eating lots of cereal/milk</p></li>
<li><p>work in food service place (free eats.)**</p></li>
</ol>

<p>Buy as many textbooks as you can from used/online sellers such as classbook.com or campusbooks.com or addall.com (which aren't always cheaper than the school bookstore but often are). </p>

<p>Don't write in or highlight your textbooks if you can manage without it, and sell the ones you won't need in future after the course is over (see above, or see campus bookstore).</p>

<p>Shop at Goodwill or Salvation Army to furnish your dorm room, or to pick up warm-weather clothing. (Funky is in!)</p>

<p>Do not drive/park a car on campus if you don't absolutely need it. </p>

<p>Get a monthly public transit pass if you will be traveling in the area.</p>

<p>Read newspapers and magazines in the library (or online!), or find a discarded paper and read it a day late.</p>

<p>Volunteer as an usher or house assistant at local theatres, which often let you watch the show for free from the back of the house.</p>

<p>**1. Work Summers and Christmas break. Find high paying jobs in factories or landscaping firms. Don't spend that money!</p>

<ol>
<li><p>Take a year off and live at home and work to save money. I created my own internship.</p></li>
<li><p>Be a Dorm advisor. Up to an $8k savings in junior year.</p></li>
<li><p>Live in an off-campus dive (cheap rent) and feed yourself by eating lots of cereal/milk <strong>or rice and beans</strong></p></li>
<li><p>work in food service place (free eats.)</p></li>
<li><p>Buy as many textbooks as you can from used/online sellers such as classbook.com or campusbooks.com or addall.com (which aren't always cheaper than the school bookstore but often are). </p></li>
<li><p>Don't write in or highlight your textbooks if you can manage without it, and sell the ones you won't need in future after the course is over (see above, or see campus bookstore).</p></li>
<li><p>Shop at Goodwill or Salvation Army to furnish your dorm room, or to pick up warm-weather clothing. (Funky is in!)</p></li>
<li><p>Do not drive/park a car on campus if you don't absolutely need it. </p></li>
<li><p>Get a monthly public transit pass if you will traveling in the area.</p></li>
<li><p>Read newspapers and magazines in the library (or online!), or find a discarded paper and read it a day late.</p></li>
<li><p>Volunteer as an usher or house assistant at local theatres, which often let you watch the show for free from the back of the house. <em>I did that too!!</em>***</p></li>
</ol>

<p>To bold: type** at the start, **at the end!</p>

<p>Note: to do the bold thing, leave out the spaces in the following:</p>

<p>[ b ]at the start, [ /b ]at the end!</p>

<p>Or to put it another way, change the { } below to [ ]:</p>

<p>{b}at the start, {/b}at the end!</p>

<ol>
<li><p>Work Summers and Christmas break. Find high paying jobs in factories or landscaping firms. Don't spend that money!</p></li>
<li><p>Take a year off and live at home and work to save money. I created my own internship.</p></li>
<li><p>Be a Dorm advisor. Up to an $8k savings in junior year.</p></li>
<li><p>Live in an off-campus dive (cheap rent) and feed yourself by eating lots of cereal/milk <strong>or rice and beans</strong></p></li>
<li><p>work in food service place (free eats.)</p></li>
<li><p>Buy as many textbooks as you can from used/online sellers such as classbook.com or campusbooks.com or addall.com (which aren't always cheaper than the school bookstore but often are).</p></li>
<li><p>Don't write in or highlight your textbooks if you can manage without it, and sell the ones you won't need in future after the course is over (see above, or see campus bookstore).</p></li>
<li><p>Shop at Goodwill or Salvation Army to furnish your dorm room, or to pick up warm-weather clothing. (Funky is in!)</p></li>
<li><p>Do not drive/park a car on campus if you don't absolutely need it.</p></li>
<li><p>Get a monthly public transit pass if you will traveling in the area.</p></li>
<li><p>Read newspapers and magazines in the library (or online!), or find a discarded paper and read it a day late.</p></li>
<li><p>Volunteer as an usher or house assistant at local theatres, which often let you watch the show for free from the back of the house. <em>I did that too!!</em>*</p></li>
<li><p>Apply to as many scholarships during your senior year as possible. Yoo might actually get some of them. You'd be surprised. </p></li>
</ol>

<p>cheers - I know that I said that I'd try to post my info in that thread for a specific CCer when you asked, but this one seems to go out to everyone so my story seems more useful here.</p>

<p>I just personally found out that I was selected to receive two scholarships. One's the 2005 Rosebud Award for community service (five receipients total each getting $500) and the other is the John Craig Allen Scholarship. The info for that scholarship is below:</p>

<p>John Craig Allen Scholarship</p>

<p>Eligible Applicants: Battle Creek area public high school graduating seniors.
Selection Criteria: Character and citizenship, industry and effort, test data and grades received in high school.
Mr. Allen was a highly respected English teacher at Battle Creek Central High School from 1926 to 1936. Mr. Allen loved
music and dramatics and often traveled to New York and Europe to see top programs. He died on September 18, 1986, and
left the major portion of his estate to the Battle Creek Community Foundation to be used for scholarships.
Selection By: Battle Creek Community Foundation Volunteer Committee.
Average grant amount: $2,000; Number of grants: four
Renewable up to four years
Support materials: Attach the General BCCF Scholarship Essay explained on the last page of application.</p>

<p>Besides the above, I also already have the $2,500 dollars for passing all of the areas (in other words, scored a 1 or 2 on all of them) in the MEAP test during junior year, and several other scholarships that I applied for this year are still pending so there's a possibility that I may be getting even more money which is a very pleasant thought.</p>

<p>Join an active church and go to many potlucks (to which you bring a moldly bologna sandwich on white bread, cut in quarters, and which you stuff back into the plastic bag when no one eats it. Good as new, and ready to go!)</p>

<p>Use your college job office to find temp jobs, so you can work when your course load permits it. I did office work, night-off sub for House Mother in a nearby prep school, convention registrations...</p>

<p>Look at all jobs, after graduation, which might have loan forgiveness involved - sometimes by staying in state, working in certain fields.</p>

<p>**1. Work Summers and Christmas break. Find high paying jobs in factories or landscaping firms. Don't spend that money!</p>

<ol>
<li><p>Take a year off and live at home and work to save money. I created my own internship.</p></li>
<li><p>Be a Dorm advisor. Up to an $8k savings in junior year.</p></li>
<li><p>Live in an off-campus dive (cheap rent) and feed yourself by eating lots of cereal/milk <strong>or rice and beans</strong></p></li>
<li><p>work in food service place (free eats.)</p></li>
<li><p>Buy as many textbooks as you can from used/online sellers such as classbook.com or campusbooks.com or addall.com (which aren't always cheaper than the school bookstore but often are).</p></li>
<li><p>Don't write in or highlight your textbooks if you can manage without it, and sell the ones you won't need in future after the course is over (see above, or see campus bookstore).</p></li>
<li><p>Shop at Goodwill or Salvation Army to furnish your dorm room, or to pick up warm-weather clothing. (Funky is in!)</p></li>
<li><p>Do not drive/park a car on campus if you don't absolutely need it.</p></li>
<li><p>Get a monthly public transit pass if you will traveling in the area.</p></li>
<li><p>Read newspapers and magazines in the library (or online!), or find a discarded paper and read it a day late.</p></li>
<li><p>Volunteer as an usher or house assistant at local theatres, which often let you watch the show for free from the back of the house. <em>I did that too!!</em></p></li>
<li><p>Apply to as many scholarships during your senior year as possible. Yoo might actually get some of them. You'd be surprised. </p></li>
<li><p>Use your college job office to find temp jobs, so you can work when your course load permits it. </p></li>
<li><p>Look at all jobs, after graduation, which might have loan forgiveness involved - sometimes by staying in state, working in certain fields. *
</p></li>
</ol>

<p>After you've done all you can to get AP credit during high school, consider taking community or local college courses at home during summers. In some cases, adding the APs, local college credits, and taking an extra credit or two during some semesters (things like music, p.e., etc. - electives) you might find yourself graduating a semester early.</p>

<p>I can top number 6 with a tip I actually used: check your required textbooks out of the college library whenever possible--amazingly, your classmates will miss that trick.</p>

<p>... but be sure to check that it's available. My school's library often puts textbooks on 1-day reserve, which means that you can't really "check them out," per se.</p>

<p>Saves a whole lot of time and money, but may be inconvenient if you follow #4.</p>

<p>Here's what saved us a full semester's tuition, R & B, etc:</p>

<p>D had a year's worth of credit accepted by her college (Smith) from her high school AP classes.</p>

<p>Instead of going abroad and paying Smith costs for that semester, she took a leave of absence for the first semester of junior year. (We are full pay, so their statement, "Financial aid follows you abroad" was of no use to us.) She found herself a wonderful opportunity abroad (in China) and got her expenses paid as well as a salary (generous by China standards, very modest by U.S. standards) and also was given daily Mandarin lessons. She lived in two major Chinese cities and was also able to travel to Thailand, Hong Kong, and remote areas of China while there. She left for China the summer after sophomore year and returned before spring semester junior year, so was in China for six months. I believe she learned so much more working in a country than she would have sitting in a classroom.
Leave of absence fee: $50
Savings in tuition, R & B, etc.: $20,000
Experience: priceless
Photos: stunning</p>

<p>Did she get credit? May I ask how she arranged that experience? Sounds cool.</p>

<p>Cheers,</p>

<p>If you e-mail me (address on my profile) I would be happy to fill you in on all the details. I am out of town for the weekend but will be back home Sunday evening.
No, she did not get college credit for her work. But the AP credits she had from high school were more than enough for her to take the semester off and do this. As a matter of fact, she had a full year of credit (the most Smith would allow). I think they have tightened up on AP credits since her though - not sure what the current policy is. D is Class '06. But she had other extra credits anyway from wonderful Smith J-term experiences in Madrid and Peru, and from taking a few credits extra each semester.
She could have graduated a year early but really wanted to graduate with her class and take more courses that just what was required for her major. So we compromised on her skipping one semester, and figured that rather than finish in January, she'd do an independent semester off when many other students were doing junior year abroad experiences. Then she would graduate in May '06 with all her class. Basically, she substituted her own junior year abroad experience and earned (a little) money rather than paying for it.
We don't mind paying the cost of Smith but did not want to pay that tab for her to be doing a program that did not provide the small classes and personal support she has at Smith.
There is more personal detail to this story but I will be more comfortable providing that one-on-one if you e-mail me. I am surprised more people don't consider a "do it yourself" junior year abroad experience.</p>