Attending college can be an intimidating task to undertake for a student but also for the parent. How will we pay for this? What school is best for my child? What’s the cost difference between in-state tuition versus out of state tuition? How do we apply for financial aid? How do we budget for college? What should my child major in?
There are so many overwhelming questions, but there are wonderful resources all in one place such as UCanGo2 at https://www.ucango2.org/. Here you can find resources to help you plan, prepare and pay for college, including a checklist for students in the 6th grade.
Maybe you have an 8th-, 9th- or a 10th-grader and you want to figure out how you are going to pay for college for him/her. Oklahoma has an amazing program called Oklahoma’s Promise, which offers qualified Oklahoma students an opportunity to earn a scholarship for college tuition.
- Must be an Oklahoma resident.
- Must enroll in the 8th, 9th or 10th grade.
- The parents’ federal adjusted gross income must not exceed $55K per year.
Visit https://www.okhighered.org/okpromise/ for more details.
If you don’t qualify for Oklahoma’s Promise or waited to late to apply, there are still other options to help pay for college. Need help with understanding aid, applying for aid, completing the process and/or managing your loan? One of the best websites to find all of this information is https://studentaid.gov/. The site provides multiple categories depending on where you are in the college planning process.
Another great resource for college planning is https://www.okcollegestart.org/. This website provides career planning, high school planning, college planning, financial aid planning, and scholarship searches. The scholarship searches are an important component. Just click on “Financial Aid Planning” and you will find categories such as “Find Scholarships.” This website not only offers high school and college student assistance with various topics, but also middle school students, adult learners and parents. This site will help students determine their interests, skills, and work values and use them to find career options that are right for them.
Another valuable resource is the Oklahoma College Assistance Program (OCAP) https://www.ocap.org/. Formerly known as the Oklahoma Guaranteed Student Loan Program, OCAP provides college access, aid awareness, financial literacy and student loan management programs and services that benefit students, parents, schools and community partners.
College education is within reach, within you, and that’s what students of all ages need to know as they plan, prepare and get ready to pay for education beyond high school.