Use the 1-2-3 approach to help your student pay for college
When you’re planning for college, the first question is often which school to choose. But equally as important is the question of how you’ll pay for it. That’s why we’ve partnered with Sallie Mae® to bring you their 1‑2‑3 approach to paying for college. These three steps can help you make more informed, responsible financial decisions for a big investment in your future.
1. Start with money you won’t have to pay back. Supplement your college savings and income by maximizing scholarships, grants, and work‑study.
Begin with any college savings that have been put aside in a dedicated college savings account and include current income that you’re earmarking for college. Maximize “free” money you will not have to pay back, including scholarships and grants. Then consider work‑study.
Scholarships are offered by colleges and universities, federal and state governments, religious groups, professional associations, employers, and other companies. You might think they’re only for academic or athletic accomplishments, but they can be awarded for a number of criteria:
Apply for scholarships—the earlier, the better, since many have deadlines.
Grants and work‑study
Grants and work‑study are generally federally funded, so be sure to submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to apply for them. The FAFSA is also used to apply for most state loan, grant, and scholarship programs.
2. Explore federal student loans. Apply by completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid.
After you’ve maximized your free money, consider federal student loans, which are provided by the government. Direct Subsidized Loans are for students with demonstrated need and Direct Unsubsidized Loans are available regardless of family income.
3. Consider a responsible private student loan. Fill the gap between your available resources and the cost of college.
If you still need additional funds after following steps 1 and 2, consider a private student loan. Private loans differ from federal student loans in several ways:
We encourage students and families to start with savings, grants, scholarships, and federal student loans to pay for college. Students and families should evaluate all anticipated monthly loan payments, and how much the student expects to earn in the future, before considering a private student loan.
1 See https://studentaid.gov/understand-aid/types#grants for more information. Sallie Mae does not provide, and these materials are not meant to convey financial, tax, or legal advice. Consult your own attorney or tax advisor about your specific circumstances. Grant, work‑study, and federal student loan information was gathered on June 23, 2021 from Studentaid.ed.gov. Sallie Mae, the Sallie Mae logo, and other Sallie Mae names and logos are service marks or registered service marks of Sallie Mae Bank. All other names and logos used are the trademarks or service marks of their respective owners. SLM Corporation and its subsidiaries, including Sallie Mae Bank, are not sponsored by or agencies of the United States of America. © 2021 Sallie Mae Bank. All rights reserved. SMPC MKT16050A 0621
Since 2002, NSHSS has supported young academics on their journey to college and beyond as they prepare to become the leaders of tomorrow. The mission behind NSHSS is to recognize academic excellence and honor high-achieving students, providing them with the resources and network to excel in college, career, and community. In doing so, NSHSS connects members with global events, scholarships, college fairs, internships, career and leadership programs, partner discounts, and more. Discover what makes NSHSS worth it to student members and how you can get involved.
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