Financial aid officers offer advice on how to help with tuition costs


By Leah Ellis

A tear in an envelope breaks the seal that contained the anticipation and sleepless nights over college tuition.

With the new year comes resolutions and dieting for most, but for college bound students, it is all about the Free Application for Federal Student Aid [FASFA]. FASFA helps students entering college receive financial aid based on all aspects of home life in order to ease the burden of paying for college.

“In addition to scholarships, filling out FASFA will increase the chances of receiving more money from the state and federal governments,” said associate director of financial aid at Bellarmine University Kate Brabandt.

It is no secret that the cost of college has been on the rise; according to College Board, tuition for a four-year public school has risen 18 percent in the last five years. Most colleges recognize this change and try to adjust to fit the demand of incoming students.

“At Bellarmine we take a very individualized approach and look at every possible situation that could help everyone,” said Brabandt.

Helping students individually is not the only way to mend the situation, however, a certain strategy is used to incentivize students and make them feel like they are getting more value for the education they pay for.

“The recruitment strategy is a program that guarantees a student will graduate in four years; otherwise, the fifth year is free,” said associate dean of admission at Bellarmine University David Kline.

Although many incentives are offered, a worry for money still lingers. Many types of scholarships are given such as academic and athletic; grants can be given as well and applying  for them is all one process.

“Every student who applies and is accepted gets a merit scholarship, they can also receive additional scholarships depending on GPA, test scores, etc., but it is determined all at once,” said Brabandt.

 

 

What should you choose?

 

Public:

-Funded mostly from state government

-On average cost cost less than private colleges

-Generally have more students and degree offerings

-Usually larger class sizes

-Possible higher acceptance rate

 

 VS

 

Private:

-Funded mostly from private contributions, donations, and tuition

-Usually costs more than a public school

-Typically offer smaller class sizes

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