How to Qualify for a Fee Waiver on Your College Application
College application fees can end up being expensive, especially if you're applying for multiple schools. However, there are a few ways that you can apply to colleges for free. This article outlines some things you can do to save money on college applications.
Don't Pay To Apply
It's time to apply to a college, and you've picked out a few you want to attend. You have a bunch of target colleges, a few fallback schools and a few reach schools. It may not seem like that many places, but when the college application fees start coming in, they're going to add up. Many colleges now charge over 50 dollars just to apply! If you apply to six colleges at that rate, you're going to feel it in the pit of your wallet. Still, there are some things you can do to get out of paying those costly fees. Some are for everyone, but some are for people with special circumstances. If you fit, however, you can manage to apply for college without spending a cent.
With the new technology age here to stay, colleges are trying to adapt and use the Internet to their advantage. Most colleges are now letting students apply online. At some colleges, doing this doesn't cost the student a dime and it makes sure that everything is formatted and sent in correctly. What's even better is that you don't have to be in a certain income bracket or have special needs in order to get this discount.
Go There in Person
If you are applying to a college nearby, you might want to look into visiting them in person. Not only does it give you a better sense of the campus and social atmosphere, but it can also save you money. Some colleges are willing to waive the fee if you turn in your application in person and have an interview with a professor or counselor. Check to see if the college you want to go to is one of these, and visit with your app ready to be turned in. However, if you have to travel a ways to get there, the cost of going to and from will probably outweigh the benefits of a free application.
Get a Legacy Waiver
If your parent or sibling went to the college you are applying to, many schools will waive the fee just because you are classified as a legacy. Some applications will ask if you are a legacy and offer to waive the fee then and there, but other times you'll just have to call the school and check what perks being a legacy gets you and if a fee waiver is one of them. If it is, you'll just have to give the name of the relative who went before you in order to get the savings.
Get a Test Fee Waiver
If you're taking the SAT in order to get into college anyway, you can apply to four colleges for free. Be sure to double check if any of the schools you want to apply for participate in the SAT fee waiver program.
Check for State Programs
Some states offer funding for college applications if you're a student who qualifies. One good judge of whether or not you qualify is if you were able to get a waiver for your SAT or ACT tests. If you did, you probably also qualify for assistance with college application fees. One downfall of using this method is that states generally only do this for colleges in state. If you're looking to go out of state for school, it's likely that the state won't be giving you any help and you'll have to ask the college itself.
Check the College's Programs
This is where you're likely to find the biggest savings. Most colleges have special forms you can fill out if you're below a certain income bracket or are in special circumstances. Generally, if your family has suffered some sort of disaster or if they are in the lowest income bracket, then the college will waive your fee. Sometimes, they don't have forms for you to fill out, so they will ask you for a letter from family, counselors or yourself about what exactly your special circumstances are. These factors may also get you special consideration as to whether or not you get in, so if you qualify be sure to apply.
The Internet helps with application fees, so what else does it help with? Or hurt? Find out how the Internet is saving you money and costing you more!
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