What Types of Financial Resources are Available for my Child in College?

September 3, 2022

Preparing your child for college is a big step for the entire family. Parents are likely to feel pangs of apprehension about having an “empty nest” for the first time. Children are met with incredible excitement and nervousness about leaving the house for the first time. Even students who stay close to home for college will experience a completely different lifestyle with new responsibilities.

One of the biggest adjustments to college is your child’s changing financial situation. For the first time, they will be responsible for their own money. The expenses of rent, educational supplies, groceries, and utilities can be a shock to young students. It’s one of the hardest adjustments for college students to overcome, but you can help prepare them for it. And there are many forms of financial aid that can make this transition much easier!

Work with your child on finding the right financial aid packages and programs while they attend college. Below are five different options that will help them stay financially sound and on top of their schoolwork. 

College Savings Account

Invest in your children’s education ahead of time with a college savings program. You can do this through the state or open a private investment account. Having a sizable nest egg set aside will help ease the financial burden of college, so students can focus on their grades and personal expenses.

Talk to one of our advisors about planning for your children’s future today.

Student Loans

Student loans are commonly used to finance higher education. These loans typically don’t have to be paid until after graduation and can cover a good portion of college expenses.

However, it is important to consider the risks of loans and ensure that you don’t acquire too much debt. Talk with your children about how much debt is reasonable for their chosen career field and what their plans are following graduation. Learn more about how to minimize college debt here.

Grants, Scholarships, and Financial Aid

Grants and scholarships are a great option for financing college education. With this form of aid, your child won’t have to worry about financial burdens right after graduation. However, these are often highly competitive, so applying early is key. See all of the different types of scholarships and grants available to students.

Military Aid

Students in the military or children of active duty and veteran members can receive grants and other types of funding for their education. If you or your child is in the military, look into funding options, as they often cover the majority of the cost of a four-year degree. 

Work-Study Programs

Most college students will need to work at least part-time in order to cover their non-educational expenses like rent, utilities, food, and gas. In order to offer students a flexible work environment with their schooling, many universities offer work-study programs that allow students to earn a paycheck while working on campus. These are typically office jobs and often allow students to study or earn extra credit while on the job. This is an excellent option for students with a full workload who still need a bit of cash to cover their expenses. 

If you have a high school student, it’s essential to start having these conversations now. The earlier they prepare for college, the easier it will be to leave home and succeed in their college career. 

If you want to learn more about financial resources and investment options for college savings, visit our Resource Center or contact a OneAscent advisor today.

 

 

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