I’ll answer this in a different way. “What are the ways to pay for college?”
Savings, current income, money they are willing to borrow (this is best determined ahead of time before emotions get involved). My recommendation is to discuss this with your parents and get a figure ahead of time.
Scholarships, institutional grants, Pell grants if you qualify, Stafford loans, summer work, work while in school (either work study if you qualify or non work study if you don’t).
Where you attend. Attending a less expensive college, or a college which doesn’t require you to live on campus, living closer to home can reduce travel expenses which are often included in the COA, and choosing lower cost options for room and board if they are available. Some universities quote a mid priced dorm or a more expensive meal plan than what their cheapest is. Sophomore year or later you can apply to be an RA which can cover some or most of room and possibly board. It is not guaranteed but a good student who shows leadership and communicates and behave well could have a chance. For some majors and some schools cooperative education programs can help finance your degree. These are most typically in engineering but some schools offer coop programs in other disciplines as well.
- Outside of college
There are programs that will pay for your education after you complete your education. There are some military programs such as ROTC which offer scholarships. There are school districts, typically in distressed areas, that will pay off the balance of student debt after you work for them a period of time.
That’s what I can think of at the moment. Parents, institutional scholarships and grants an student loans provide the bulk of the financing for college education. What you can’t do is expect a $60 or 70k per year institution to bring the cost down to an affordable level. It can happen but don’t expect it.