So, you are in your 30s and looking to go back to school? Well, you’re not alone. According to a research, more than 4 million adults are on the same ship. Most of them are looking for a degree for a career boost but no matter what the reason is, you must be ready to face some hurdles in your way.
We advise everyone to choose the most affordable school, whether it is a traditional institution or an online program. Adults going back to school and looking for financial assistance might have to face some restrictions. Grants and scholarships are sometimes only offered to students pursuing their first degree.
In this article, we will discuss ways to find money for adults returning to school so that they don’t solely have to rely on loans.
FAFSA stands for Free Application for Federal Students Aid. Most school would require students to fill FAFSA form, which helps in determining how much assistance is required and how it should be processed. Based on FAFSA calculation, the school would subtract your contribution from the total cost of attendance. This is actually your financial need and based on school’s policy, you would get the financial aid package as per this need.
Contacting The Institution Directly
It is also a good idea to contact the institution’s financial aid department you wish to enroll in. Check for grants and scholarships that might be available for you. Since these offerings are usually limited and work on first come first serve basis, some urgency could really help.
Financial aid is not just limited to advanced degrees or bachelors program. If you are considering a culinary or cosmetology school, you should check for scholarships as well.
Online Scholarships Sites
No matter how long is your break from studies once you have decided to go back, online scholarship sites may come in handy as well. Certain websites offer scholarships based on your credentials and experience and others may simply ask you to take surveys to enter into a lucky draw to win.
Experts are of the opinion that your total debt, including student loan and other, should not be more than your expected starting salary. If the debt is less than your salary then you could easily pay that in less than 10 years.
For adults going back to school, 10 years could mean retirement. So be very careful as you don’t want to be paying debts after the retirement. If you’re fearing this situation, simply borrow less.
Explore Other Ways to Educate Yourself
Before you actually make a decision, just make sure why do you want to study more? In most cases it is to get a better job, a career growth or simply to learn a new set of skills. If that’s the case you can also look for cheaper alternatives like Udemy and Skillshare. Online courses might not sound fancy but they serve the same purpose.
Got more ways adults can educate themselves? Don’t keep them to yourself – share in the comments section below.
Until Next Time – Adios!