It Can Be Done

I’ve heard a few people say that they can’t go to college because it’s too expensive.  Well, I’m about to share with you how it cost me only $8,000 to get a Bachelor’s degree AND a Master’s degree.  Yes, you read that correct.

I was able to get the Arkansas Challenge Scholarship for the first two years of college (after that, I acted stupid and lost my scholarship).  The scholarship was relatively easy to get.  I didn’t have a great HS GPA – it was below a 3 point I’m sure.  Along with that, my family didn’t make a lot of money, so I received financial aid.  My parents paid the difference that first year, which was less than $1000 (I’m thinking it was $800).

For the following three years (yes, it took me 5 years to get my bachelor’s degree), I took out student loans and had financial aid.  My student loan total was right around $18,000 when I graduated.  Yikes!

I had done my homework and knew that there was a state funded program available for those who graduated with a technical degree (mine was computer info systems) and found a technical job within 6 months of graduation.  This program paid the graduate $2500 per year they kept a technical job, up to 4 years.  There was a massive amount of paperwork involved, but it was worth it.  I applied and was accepted into that program and they sent my student loan people the money each year.  There went $10,000 of my student loan debt.

So, I was left only to pay $8,000 for my Bachelor’s degree.  Not bad, huh?

Moving on to my Master’s degree… I work for a company that has an Education Assistance Program.  I read through all the material and applied to be in that program.  They accepted my application and have paid my tuition, fees, and books for grad school.  The catch?  It can’t be more than $5000 a year and you have to stay employed with the company a year after you graduate.  I scheduled my classes so that it wouldn’t cost more than $5000 a year and I had already planned to stay with the company…so easy peasy.

Why am I telling you all this?  Because I want people to know that they CAN go to college – they just have to put some work into it and find programs and assistance that works for them.  It’s doable. 

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2 thoughts on “It Can Be Done

  1. way to go!! and so true – most people are too lazy to do this, or they don’t want to commit to the type of program you did out of school as a trade off. but yes, we can all achieve more if we reach out and go for it instead of waiting for handouts. i’m sure you, hubs, and your bank account are celebrating your smart decisions 🙂

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