By Khadijah McIntyre
Finding the right college can be time consuming, and a bit stressful. But trying to figure out how to pay for your education can be even more stressful.
According to the National Center for Education Statistics college costs rise about 3% each year. This means that the average in state cost of the high school graduating class of 2013's college education will be $37,146. I know it's an insane amount of money, but knowing where to look for money will help cover much of the cost.
Many schools and companies offer scholarships, but don't really advertise them everywhere you go. There are websites that have nothing but scholarship money on them, and this is where they're advertised.
One website that's very popular with teens who take the SAT is College Board ( www.collegeboard.com ). Although the websites main focus is preparing for and taking the SAT, College Board also offers a scholarship section. I would compare the College Board scholarship search site to Google. After providing information such as your GPA, your affiliations and your military status, the website searches scholarships for which you may be eligible.
Another website is College Prowler (www.collegeprowler.com). This website is ALL scholarship. It is much like Facebook in the sense that you make a profile and include your top colleges. The site has a feed of what is happening at each of your selected schools. There is also a feed of scholarships that have recently been posted on the website.
The website Cappex.com (www.cappex.com) takes internet dating to another level. It is like a dating website, but instead of introducing people to other people, it introduces students to scholarships and colleges. After making a profile it will send you emails about scholarships that have been posted on the site. You can also get emails about colleges that are comparable to the colleges in your personal profile.
And last, but not the least is Zinch (www.zinch.com). Zinch is a website that allows you to keep in contact with the colleges you want to attend, and offer scholarship money. The website has different contests that students can enter and win scholarship money. A big plus to using this website is that the company will match whatever scholarships you receive using the website.
According to the National Center for Education Statistics, the average financial aid package is $7,900. Now you can get more money and even keep in touch with your number one college. No one should turn down a college education because they're not able to pay for it. Good luck on getting scholarships!