Posted: 11:38 a.m. Friday, May 17, 2013
My parents always encouraged/expected me to do well in school, and I realized the only way I was going to be able to get a good-paying job was to study. The only obstacle standing in my way was money. At a very young age, I realized my parents could not afford to pay for my college tuition and expenses, so I decided to start playing the scholarship game.
I remember worrying about money right up until the end of high school. I had been accepted to so many schools, but every time I added up the numbers, I couldn’t figure how I would pay for it all.
It was scary. I would stay up late at night thinking about it. I felt no true success when I received my college acceptance letters, unlike my school peers. While my classmates were celebrating their acceptance, I was still waiting for scholarship and financial aid offers to be mailed in.
Senior year of high school, I spent all my time studying, working part-time, turning in college applications and applying for scholarships. I applied to every single scholarship I could find. I spent countless of hours on the Internet, with my guidance counselor and in the library searching for any type of scholarship.
The hard work finally paid off. Fast forward four years, one bachelor’s and two master’s degrees later, I ended up receiving nearly $100,000 in scholarships. I added up all the stipend money I received, plus the tuition costs. If you go by how much my degrees are worth, I actually ended up receiving more than $100,000 in scholarships. I fast-tracked and was able to receive my education in four years, which decreased the amount of money I had to pay.
How did I become an expert at winning scholarships?
Student debt is nearing $1 trillion dollars. Don’t graduate with the average $25,000 in student loans. Especially when you can be proactive and apply for scholarships.