Home > Financial Aid > Funding Your Education > Reducing The Cost Of School

Reducing The Cost Of School

There are several ways to reduce the amount that going to a college or career school will cost you so that you can avoid borrowing too much.

ADVERTISEMENT

Will the government give me a tax break?

You or your parents might qualify for a Hope tax credit or Lifetime Learning tax credit. For more information on these credits, visit

www.ed.gov/updates/97918tax.html

You should also check with your tax professional or the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). IRS Publication 970, Tax Benefits for Higher Education, explains these credits and other tax benefits. You can order the publication free from the IRS at 1-800-tax-form (1-800-829-3676). Or you can download the publication from the website www.irs.ustreas.gov.

What about lower-cost schools?

If you plan on working toward a bachelor's degree, you might want to consider starting out at a two-year community college and then transferring to a four-year school. Community colleges are partially funded by local and state taxes and are therefore usually less expensive than four-year schools. Some four-year schools are also partially funded by local and state taxes and can be less expensive than those that are not funded by taxes.

You can also save money by living at home and commuting to your local community college. You'll want to make sure that the courses you take during your first two years will transfer to the four-year school you want to attend and that they will count toward your bachelor's degree.

What about working or volunteering?

Whether you choose a college or a career school, you can work part time to pay for some of your costs. If you do this, you should make sure that you save enough time for studying and that your work and school schedules do not conflict.

AmeriCorps is a program that allows participants to earn education awards in return for national service. For more information, contact the Corporation for National Service:

Corporation for National Service
1201 New York Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20525
1-800-94-ACORPS (1-800-942-2677)
www.cns.gov

The U.S. Armed Forces also offer the following educational programs and ways to pay for school or to reduce your school costs:

  • You can attend one of the military academies. These are four-year colleges that are tuition free and offer bachelor's degrees and a commission in the military after graduation.
  • You can attend a college or career school and enroll in the Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) Program, which will pay your tuition, fees, and books and provide you with a monthly allowance.
  • You can join the Armed Forces before you go to a college or career school and take advantage of the Montgomery GI Bill, which provides financial support to those who attend school after serving in the military.
  • If you enlist in the US Army, you may be eligible to receive repayment assistance from its Loan Repayment Program. For a four-year enlistment in a selected skill in the active Army, up to $65,000 in repayment assistance may be available. For an enlistment in the Army Reserve, up to $20,000 may be available.
  • You can also earn college credit for some military training, possibly reducing the number of classes you'll have to take.
  • As an active member of the military, you can take courses at a college or career school during your off-duty hours.

Contact your local military recruiter for more information on these programs.

ADVERTISEMENT

Latest College & Financial Aid News

The AP Exams Have Significant Changes for Second Year in a Row

April 14, 2021

by Izzy Hall

Traditionally taken the first two weeks of May, the AP Exams test students’ knowledge from their Advanced Placement classes, with the possibility of being awarded college credit for a high score. Last year, the College Board made significant chances to the AP Exams in order to accommodate the coronavirus pandemic’s effect on students, schools and curriculums. This year, the exams will look more like they have in the past, but with some notable changes. [...]

Scholarship Search in College? Scholarships for Undergrads

April 13, 2021

by Scholarships.com Staff

Let’s say you’ve made it. You are enrolled in college, or have been for a year or two. You’re receiving some financial aid, or even a scholarship, but something’s missing. It’s money. No matter how generous the package you’re receiving is, there’s always one more book to buy, one more activity fee, one more dining hall bill… [...]

University to Give New Students Free Laptops for Filing the FAFSA

April 6, 2021

by Izzy Hall

The coronavirus made laptops a necessity for college students. Where before students without personal computers or laptops could use on-campus computers and provided software to meet the technological needs of their courses, the shift last spring to online classes necessitated that students have a stable internet connection and a compatible device. While the majority of students were able to meet this requirement, according to a study by EDUCASE, some students found themselves without a modern laptop that could run the most up-to-date browser, use RAM-heavy software or keep up even with reliable high-speed Wi-Fi. One university has announced a unique remedy for this technical situation. [...]