Money and Financial Aid - March 2010

10 Affordable Private Colleges

Private colleges are often desired for their small sizes and big reputations. Are you interested in going to a private school but don't think you have the money? Read on to find out about 10 affordable private colleges.

5 Scholarships You Should Apply for in March

Looking for more scholarship money to help pay for your higher education? Here are five college scholarship contests and sweepstakes that you should enter before the end of the month.

5 Scholarships You Should Apply for This Month

Although some scholarship providers require applicants to write lengthy essays to be considered for a financial award, there are plenty of other organizations that select random winners or offer awards based on academic merit. If you're looking for a scholarship program that doesn't require hours of effort on your part, you need to check out this list of five academic awards and scholarships.

Americans Dig Deep to Finance College Education

In their annual 'How America Pays for College' survey, Sallie Mae found that families all over the country are opening their wallets to cover growing college costs. In addition to demonstrating overall spending increases, the report breaks down what sources families are using to finance students' education.

April is National Financial Literacy Month

April is recognized as National Financial Literacy Month throughout the United States. The goal of the holiday is to promote the importance of financial literacy and wellness. Find out how you can take part in this special month and educate yourself and your family about healthy spending and debt.

Are the Most Expensive Universities Worth the Money?

There are lots of factors that students need to take into account when deciding where to apply for college: what they want to study, where they want to live, and, of course, how much they're willing to pay. Are the most expensive schools providing the best education? The Education Insider takes a closer look at what students are paying for at the country's priciest campuses.

Are Top Colleges Worth the Money?

Many high school students are focused on getting admitted to elite private colleges. But given the extraordinary costs of attending topflight universities and government aid declining, is attending these institutions really worth it?

At Some Colleges, New Student Fees to Make Up for Drop in State Funding

From American River College to Westfield State University, the effects of reduced funding and budget crunches are being felt. And who winds up paying? In most cases it's the students who are shelling out more in the way of new and increasing fees. The Education Insider looks at the effect this practice is having on students and how some states are making schools answer for these increases.

Budget Cuts Continue to Threaten College Humanities Programs

Last month, SUNY Albany announced a plan to eliminate several humanities programs in response to millions of dollars of cuts in state funding. Programs facing the chopping block include classics, theater and multiple foreign language departments. Coming on the heels of similar cuts at universities across the country, the news prompted a series of debates on the tangible and intangible benefits of humanities education.

Buying Down While Choosing a College

The recent economic collapse has caused a multitude of financial behavior changes in people. This new sensitivity to cost and incurring debt is now influencing students and their families as they decide upon a college. It's brought the idea of 'buying down' to the decision-making process.

California University Budget Woes Result in Major Tuition Hikes

In spite of protests from students, two public university systems in California recently announced the approval of a tuition hike. Though this is unwelcome news for many students in the University of California and California State University systems, the impact may not be as severe as one might think.

College Students Express Anxiety About the Economy

Harvard's Institute of Politics (IOP) just released the 17th edition of their 'Survey of Young Americans' Attitudes Toward Politics and Public Service.' College students diverged from other 18- to 29-year-olds on some measures, but shared the Millennials' concerns about the economy and future job prospects.

College Students Protest Budget Cuts and Rising Costs

Students throughout the state of California have been rallying all the month to support higher education. On Monday, more than 5,000 students converged on the capitol to protest budget cuts and rising fees at public universities and community colleges.

College Students Stay Committed to Education in Spite of Financial Challenges

BookRenter has released the results of their national College Experience Survey, which explores students' experiences and attitudes regarding finances. They found that most students have made major sacrifices to pay for their education and feel that they were unprepared for today's financial challenges when they started school.

Colleges Pledge to Eliminate Loans for Needy Students

A new survey from The Project on Student Debt found that many colleges plan to continue their pledges to eliminate or limit loans for needy students despite the tough economy.

Creative Teens: Win Up to $10,000 in Scholarships for Scholastic Art and Writing

In honor of National Arts in Education Week, the Alliance for Young Artists & Writers has announced their call for entries for the 2011 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards. American student between grades 7 and 12 are eligible to enter to win national recognition for their creative work as well as up to $10,000 in scholarship money.

Education Department Outlines 5-Year Plan for Student Aid

This fall, the Education Department released a five-year strategic plan for improving federal financial aid for college students. The plan includes reaching out to more students, simplifying the application process and stepping up efforts to reduce fraud.

Education Pays: The College Board Argues For the Value of a Degree

The College Board recently released the third installment in its 'Education Pays' series. Published every three years, the reports examine the relative costs and benefits of getting a college degree - and the latest one concludes that it still pays off.

Extra Financial Aid Only Helps Students Likely to Drop Out

Can financial aid to students with a low likelihood for persistence in college help decrease their drop-out rate? Findings from a new study suggest just that. Authors of the report propose that these findings have several policy implications and suggest a need for more effective distribution of need-based financial aid.

Few College Campuses Putting Their Money Where Their Mouths Are

The advocacy group Education Trust recently released a study on the state of higher education for less privileged learners entitled 'Priced Out: How the Wrong Financial-Aid Policies Hurt Low-Income Students.' Though the report identifies a systematic crisis for cash-strapped students, it points out five schools that actually excel at helping their low-income charges gain access to education. What are those schools?

Financial Aid Offices Feel The Strain of Rising Tuition Costs, Too

Students may think they're the only ones being impacted by increasing tuition costs. But while students are trying to find new ways to fund their education, financial aid offices are trying to make sure they can provide as much assistance as possible.

Five Unusual Scholarships

Financial need and academic merit have traditionally been the primary criteria on which scholarships are awarded. A whole other class of unorthodox financial rewards, however, is also available to college students. Learn about some of these strange scholarships.

Hard Economics: Funding Trends at Public Universities

Many high school grads look to public colleges and universities for a quality education at an affordable cost. But tuition hikes at state schools are placing greater financial burden on students. These rising college costs come in the wake of public funding cuts to higher ed.

How Budget Cuts Will Impact Language and International Studies

Cuts to the federal budget are being felt across all sectors. In education, these cuts are particularly damaging to the fields of international studies and foreign languages. Here's an analysis of how budget cuts may impact this field.

How the New Federal Student Loan Rules Affect You

Last spring, Congress passed a student aid bill that made a series of major changes to the federal financial aid system. Many of these changes went into effect this month. Parents, students and prospective students: Read on to discover how the new student aid regulations can make federal loans easier and more affordable for you.

How to Eliminate Your College Debt with a Student Loan Forgiveness Program

College debt can be a true burden after graduation--especially for people who are struggling to find or keep a job. Fortunately, there are ways to lower and possibly eliminate college debt. Read on to learn more about student loan forgiveness programs.

How Your Student ID Can Save You Money

College students are known for frequently being on tight budgets. By making use of their student IDs, they could be able to take advantage of discounts on technology, entertainment, local retailers and even travel.

Illinois to Offer Donation-Based Scholarships for Immigrants

Illinois recently signed its DREAM Act into law, which will result in the children of immigrants getting financial assistance to continue their studies at state higher education institutions. And it won't cost taxpayers a single penny.

Ivy Tech Commmunity College to Award a Scholarship to Every High School Valedictorian in Indiana

Most businesses would likely agree that marketing is a key to success. When it comes to promotion, higher education institutions are not really all that different from large or small businesses or corporations. Recently, Indiana's largest public college came up with a way to provide financial aid to students while generating word about its programs and newly-established credit transfer opportunities. In the end, the college is hoping for a huge return on a relatively mild investment.

Kindergarten to College: San Francisco Launches First City-Managed College Savings Plan

San Francisco recently unveiled the first city-run college savings plan. Under the program, which is called Kindergarten to College (K2C), the city will open a new college savings account with an initial seed deposit for every kindergartner starting public school.

Less Funding, More Responsibility: Community Colleges Struggle to Meet Student Needs With Insufficient Resources

In a new brief, the American Association of Community Colleges highlights funding inequities between community colleges and other sectors of higher education. Although 2-year institutions are essential to meeting national educational attainment goals, they continue to be dramatically underfunded - and students are suffering.

Living the American Dream (Scholarship): Miami-Dade College Offers Free Tuition for High School Graduates

How do you spell 'miracle'? For certain Florida high school seniors, it could be spelled exactly like Miami-Dade College. For many of these students, higher learning seems like an unaffordable and unattainable goal as they lack the financial means to further their education and expand their future opportunities. This is about to change, however, for graduates of Miami-Dade County schools, thanks to the aptly-named American Dream Scholarship (ADS).

Low Income Students Struggle to Enter Academia

Earlier this month, nonprofit advocacy group Education Trust released an alarming report that suggests students from low-income families are drastically underserved by higher ed institutions. As college costs surge upward and financial aid dries up, a postsecondary education is increasingly out of reach for many young people.

Low-Income Students' Financial Barrier to Higher Education

Some consider higher education a private good, a sorting mechanism of class and intelligence. Others look at it more democratically, as a chance for students of all types to learn things about themselves and the world they wouldn't otherwise have access to. If you're in the latter camp, you may be troubled by a study recently released by advocacy group The Education Trust that shows just how difficult it is for low-income students to garner access to college.

Money Management Made Easy for Students

Financial management can be pretty daunting for students, whether they're just learning how to support themselves or adjusting to going back to school. Rent, bills, books, credit cards, student loans - there's a lot to sort out. But with these simple money management tips you'll find yourself on top of your finances with plenty of time left for schoolwork - and fun.

More Money, More Offers: Colleges Using Financial Status in Admissions Process

The era of need-blind admissions may be coming to an end. An increasing number of colleges and universities are starting to take a student's financial standing into account. The result is that you may get accepted or rejected to an institution based on your ability to pay.

New Credit Card Act May Impact How Students Pay for College

The Credit CARD Act of 2009 goes into effect this month. The new law is intended to protect young adults and college students from overeager credit card companies. But for the many students who use credit cards to charge their tuition, textbooks, school supplies and other direct education expenses, the law might cause big problems.

New Models for Financing Public Universities

States throughout the country are facing massive debt and seeking ways to balance budgets. As a result, cost cutting is affecting all types of state programs, including public universities. Now, both university and government leaders are looking for change in how public universities are financed.

New Study Suggests That Underprivileged Students May Benefit the Most From College

Scholars often assume that the students who are most likely to attend college are also most likely to benefit from higher education. In an article published this month in the American Sociological Review, authors Jennie E. Brand and Yu Xie propose an alternative theory, suggesting that those who are least likely to choose college - primarily students of low socioeconomic status - would actually obtain the most benefit from a college degree.

Not Declaring a Major Could Cost Florida Students Money

The old saying 'time is money' could be applied to a new policy being adopted by Florida public universities. Starting in the 2011-12 school year, an increased 'excess hour' fee will be charged to students who take more classes than needed to graduate. The fee, introduced in 2009, will now be double the tuition cost for each class taken beyond the requirements needed to earn a bachelor's degree.

Pay Down Your Student Debt in 5 Easy Steps

Unless a person was able to qualify for scholarships, he or she probably incurred student loan debt in order to attend college. The Education Insider has compiled a 5-step guide that could help students pay down that balance more efficiently. Read on for more information.

Pell Grant Program Set for Adjustments

Last week, Republicans in the U.S. House of Representative announced a proposal to cut Pell Grants. Only days later, President Obama released his proposed 2012 budget, which would leave the loan program largely intact. Select provisions have been slated for change, however, which could impact some college students.

Pell Grant Ups and Downs

Pell Grants enable students to pay for college without incurring debt. Unfortunately, the federally-funded program has faced a tumultuous past few years. Funding has ricocheted up and down, resulting in a confusing and difficult situation for students who rely upon the support the grants provide.

Positive Outlook for Education Fundraising

The Council for Advancement and Support of Education's latest fundraising index may signal the return of optimism in academia. Interviews with development officers at colleges and universities showed an estimated increase in philanthropic giving during the past school year, and expectations for an even larger one over the next year.

Possible Merger of NC Community Colleges Could Save Millions of Dollars

Tough economic times have forced everyone, from individuals to corporations to higher education institutions, to look for ways to balance budgets and save money. For North Carolina community colleges, some claim savings could come in the way of a merger between smaller and larger schools. The Education Insider takes a look at the positives and negatives of this plan.

President Calls For Extension of Higher Education Tax Credit

Under the stimulus bill of 2009, President Barack Obama instituted the American Opportunity Tax Credit to help students and their families pay for higher education. The credit is set to expire at the end of 2010, but the President has urged Congress to make it permanent.

President Obama Hopes to Secure $118 Million for Education

From reducing drop-out rates to developing learning technology, big business pledges are an important factor in funding educational initiatives. On July 18, 2011, President Obama hosted a roundtable event with a specific goal in mind; by the time the meeting was over, the president hoped education would have the financial backing it needed.'s Education Insider asks: Was Obama successful?

Recent Data Theft Could Affect 5% of Federal Student Loan Borrowers

Names, addresses, Social Security numbers and other identity data were stolen last week from a nonprofit guarantor of federal student loans. The thieves nabbed information on 3.3 million student loan borrowers.

Scholarship Spotlight: The Rhodes Scholarship

Last month, the newest Rhodes Scholars were announced. These students have the opportunity to study on scholarship at prestigious Oxford University in England. But just what does it mean to be a Rhodes Scholar? And what does it take to be join this elite group?

Scholarship Watch: 10 Scholarships to Apply for this Fall

It's no secret that going to college can be very expensive. And as a recent report from the College Board reveals, higher ed costs are only increasing. With expenses for tuition, room, board and books on the rise, financial aid is more important than ever for making school affordable. Here are 10 scholarships that can help lessen the damage to your bank account.

September is College Savings Month

The cost of college is often overwhelming. But with a little financial planning, even education expenses can become manageable. Join us in celebrating College Savings Month with these tips on building a college fund for your child's future.

Should Schools Do Away with In-State Tuition?

Recently, ''The Chronicle of Higher Education'' published a commentary from a University of Colorado at Boulder professor, Roger Pielke, Jr. Pielke suggests that public universities consider instilling flat-rate tuitions and do away with the financial variances brought about by in-state and out-of-state college fees. The Education Insider takes a look at what this type of change could mean.

Show Me The Money: Should Schools Offer Students Financial Incentives?

Have you heard the phrase 'Money makes the world go round?' There are various education policy makers that support such ideology and have offered students financial incentives in return for stellar academic performance. Read on to learn more.

Simplifying Student Aid: Report Proposes Cutting Red Tape to Increase Access to Financial Assistance

The Institute for College Access & Success recently released a report examining how the financial aid process affects college participation rates. While they agree that simplifying the FAFSA is a crucial first step to increasing college access, the report focuses on the oft-ignored burden that post-FAFSA paperwork places on low-income students and the roadblocks it creates to getting access to badly-needed aid.

Some States Have Increased Higher Education Spending

Ten states that experienced minimal budget deficits in the current fiscal year have taken the opportunity to increase funding for local colleges and universities. Some hope to stimulate long-term economic growth by bolstering research and improving access to higher education and job training.

Spotlight on Fulbright

Sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, the Fulbright Program provides students with grants to study in foreign countries. Fulbright awards are highly coveted and thus very competitive. Learn more about these prestigious grants and how you can start the application process.

Spotlight: The Rotary World Peace Fellowship

Rotary World Peace Fellowships represent an opportunity for mid-career professionals to earn a master's degree while studying in a foreign country. Sponsored by Rotary International, these education opportunities are designed to help foster peace and cooperation among nations.

Students Pay Either Way: The Financial Crisis in Higher Education

Too many students, not enough money - that's a problem being dealt with at numerous colleges across the country. The recent recession has sent record levels of learners to seek job training, but what they find may not be in any shape to help them. What are some of the financial hardships currently troubling schools?

Students: Get the Most Out of Health Care Reform

On September 23, big changes are coming to health care for college students, including better insurance benefits and coverage extensions. Read on to discover what the health care reform bill of 2010 means for you. 2010 Scholarship Winners: Architecture

Each year, awards ten merit-based scholarships to students in fields ranging from health administration to criminal justice. We recently caught up with Scott Bonjukian, our 2010 winner in Architecture and Drafting. Read on to learn how the scholarship has helped him. 2010 Scholarship Winners: Business Administration

Each year, awards ten merit-based scholarships to students in fields ranging from health administration to criminal justice. We recently caught up with Amy Cope, our 2010 winner in Business Administration. Read on to learn how the scholarship has helped her. 2010 Scholarship Winners: Computer Science

Each year, awards ten merit-based scholarships to students in fields ranging from health administration to criminal justice. We recently caught up with Jude Ejiobi, our 2010 winner in Computer Science and Computer Engineering. Read on to learn how the scholarship has helped him. 2010 Scholarship Winners: Criminal Justice

Each year, awards ten merit-based scholarships to students in fields ranging from health administration to architecture. We recently caught up with Megan Guardino, our 2010 winner in Criminal Justice and Law Enforcement. Read on to learn how the scholarship has helped her. 2010 Scholarship Winners: Graduate-Level Distance Learning

Each year, awards ten merit-based scholarships to students in fields ranging from health administration to criminal justice. We recently caught up with Beth Holcomb, our 2010 winner for graduate students pursuing distance learning degrees. Read on to learn how the scholarship has helped her. 2010 Scholarship Winners: Liberal Arts

Each year, awards ten merit-based scholarships to students in fields ranging from health administration to criminal justice. We recently caught up with Madison Shipley, our 2010 winner in Liberal Arts and General Studies. Read on to learn how the scholarship has helped her. 2010 Scholarship Winners: Nursing

Each year, awards ten merit-based scholarships to students in fields ranging from health administration to criminal justice. We recently caught up with Abbie Altman, our 2010 winner in Nursing and Health Administration. Read on to learn how the scholarship has helped her.

Teens Say It Is Their Responsibility to Pay for College

The upcoming generation of college-bound students feels that the burden of paying for college should fall on their shoulders rather than the shoulders of their parents, according to a new survey conducted by the College Savings Foundation.

The Least Expensive Colleges in the US

As part of the 2008 Higher Education Opportunity Act, Congress mandated the creation of the College Affordability and Transparency Center (CATC), a website that allows users to easily view the most and least expensive schools in the United States. What, according to the CATC, are the nation's most affordable institutes of higher learning?

The Most Expensive Colleges in the US

As part of 2008's Higher Education Opportunity Act, Congress mandated the creation of the College Affordability and Transparency Center (CATC), a website that allows users to easily view the most and least expensive schools in the United States. According to CATC, what schools cost the most money?

The Price You Pay: Tuition Comparisons

When it comes to picking the right college, there are a lot of factors to consider. Not least among these considerations is how much your degree will cost. Learn how tuition and living costs compare at an Ivy League school, a liberal arts college, a large state university and a small public school.

Tips for Saving Energy - and Money

The federal government just launched the Cash for Appliances program and it's got everyone talking about energy efficiency. Read on to learn how you can conserve energy and save money.

Tuition Won't Stop Me Scholarship Opportunity

This scholarship is currently closed. It's no secret that students are frustrated with the rising costs of getting an education. wants to help by offering you the chance to win our $1,000 scholarship to help manage your college costs with our new Tuition Won't Stop Me Scholarship. Find out how!

U.S. Department of Labor Clarifies Rules for Unpaid Internships

Unpaid internships have long been a mainstay of college students seeking real-world experience. Unfortunately, the recession has led many private companies to take advantage of this free labor. In response, the U.S. Department of Labor has released a fact sheet explaining federal internship regulations under the Fair Labor Standards Act.

Understanding the New Private Student Loans

For decades the federal government has offered loans to students who can't afford to pay for college by themselves. Recently those loans switched from having variable to fixed interest rates. In response, the past few weeks have seen some private banks alter their student lending game. Traditionally purveyors of variable-rate loans, U.S. Bank and Wells Fargo now provide their clients loans with fixed rates as well. What are students (and their families) to make of this?

University Endowments on the Rebound

The economic turbulence of the past few years has affected college and university assets in profound ways. Market declines have caused institutions to sustain double-digit losses to endowments. A recent report, though, suggests that endowments are again on the rise.

Why You Should Consider an On-Campus Job

Working part-time while pursuing a degree full-time is necessary for many students to make ends meet. Choosing to work on campus comes with a variety of benefits, including flexible schedules and competitive pay and if you live on or near campus, you don't even need a car to get to work!