07 Oct Financing College Education
College education is the main investment in human resource and therefore plays a major role in the development of a country. The US government plays a major role in ensuring that Higher Education is affordable and easily accessible to the larger mass through different loans and scholarships. Nevertheless, there are some factors that have contributed to the unfortunate reduction of federal aid. According to a Study by the Joint Economic Committee, tuition fee in High Education Institutions has doubled in less than 20 years and seems to increase by the day. The study also showed that in 1995 High education was far much cheaper at a price of US$ 6000 including accommodation for public institutions. College financing is therefore a nightmare for the average parent.
In the last 10 years, federal aid has increased by a margin of 65% margin but this has not helped in making education affordable. The cost of student loans is regularly increasing and this directly affects its availability. The upper and middle income earners are getting better deals, while the poor have to seek alternative Financing options. Some look out for Grants while others seek other scholarship chances for their education. Federal aid has gone down by 36% and this has left little if any hope for the poor students.
Student loans are not perfect enough to seal the gap for the middle income earners as well. The tuition fees have rapidly increased in the last 10 years by a 45% margin, which in turn affects the benefits of the student loans. In general this system depends on student debts not considering the less fortunate families. Due to these factors, the gap between middle income earners and the poor who attend college has significantly increased. The fear of getting into debt has made many poor families avoid the loans altogether and hence never attend college. So what is the way forward and what should parents do in order to ensure they are better prepared to see their children through college?
Saving for College
Parents are supposed to contribute a certain percentage towards college education and while this is the case, there is a tendency of not saving. Whether your child wants to get a 2 year associate degree or a 4 year bachelor degree, planning in advance is important. There are several things you need to consider before you start saving and this includes the college the child is going to attend, the course they will be pursuing and the charges for the same.
In this regard, community colleges are least expensive. They offer courses that range from $ 300 to $ 600. State colleges on the other hand are known to vary in cost though the average cost per course can be high or lower than $ 1000. Private universities are the most expensive and while this is the case costs vary from one school to another. Regardless of the costs, one thing you have to note is that college education is not cheap and you need to prepare in advance for the challenges that lie ahead.
The dangers of not saving for college
There are several dangers posed by the lack of an early saving plan for your child’s college education. Top on the list is the fact that you deny your child the opportunity to pursue college education. As mentioned earlier, education forms the backbone human resource and failing to educate your child only places them at a disadvantage in the job industry. In the future, it is expected that college education costs are going to rise higher and lack of preparation only poses a serious threat towards continued education. The future is also unpredictable and preparing early is the only way to ensure you are forearmed and your child is set for college.
Foreign Education and the Costs
Foreign education has been an alternative for some parents who have had it rough while trying to get their children an education. With the high increase in education costs in some of the leading cheaper foreign education destinations such as Asia and the Middle East, it is even more difficult for parents to meet the cost. This has led to an increase in the number of students searching for alternative funding such as scholarships and part time jobs. Yet, this has done little to alleviate the situation and make it easier for parents. Overseas education has roughly fifty scholarships and some countries do not allow students to work and study at the same time. Those who manage to get funding get lesser amounts and this is because of the recovery from the Global meltdown. It is for all these reasons that parents need to look for alternative financing options for their kids’ college education such as independent scholarships. For more information refer to financingcollegeedu.com
Gessan M S