Benefits of Higher Education: Why College Matters

You have graduated high school and this seems enough for now. You have gotten a job and it pays well. Or maybe you are fresh out of high school but aren’t really sure what to embark on next. College is expensive and the work that you have to put in is a lot. Along with taking care of your family, this seems too hard to balance. So what will be the difference if you have a college degree?

You are pondering on the idea of going to college but aren’t really sure. Here are the reasons why you should:

When you are a high school graduate, you will only have several job options because most job openings are for college graduates. If you have graduated from college, you won’t have to settle for a job that you don’t like because many of employers will want to hire you. Your job options won’t have to be limited.

If you look at the many job requirements, you will notice that a lot of them require a college degree. Having attained higher education will open more doors for you. You will be qualified for many job positions. This means getting to pick one that you really like.

And this means job satisfaction for you. The unemployment rate of individuals with college degrees is half than the unemployment rate of high school graduates.

Promotions and increased salary

Even if you have a stable job when you are only a high school graduate, your chances of being promoted are quite slim if ever at all. This means being stuck to the same salary for the years to come. If ever you get a raise, it will only be significantly low.

We know that along with promotions come higher salaries. This is one of the biggest advantages of having had higher education. According the US Census Bureau, those with a college degree will earn a salary that is 86% higher than those without it.

College graduates, even in entry level positions, will be paid more. The climb to the corporate ladder and to a higher paying position will be much broader if you have a bachelor’s degree.

Healthy for your community

Having graduated college is not only healthy for you but for the community and the country in general as well. This is because college graduates are less likely to rely on government assistance programs than high school graduates. Instead, you will be more likely to contribute to these funds. You will be able to take care of your family and won’t have to rely on the government and anybody else to assist you.

Now there you have it. Reasons why you should invest in a college degree. Going to a university may seem like a lot right now but it is more of an investment really. Sure you will have to worry about tuition and deadlines but I assure you it is well worth it. Your future will be much brighter if you have one and your chances of earning are substantially higher.

Are You Eligible for a Pell Grant?

A Federal Pell Grant is a need-based form of financial assistance that is awarded to individuals who belong to less fortunate families but wish to go to college. Unlike the usual college loan, this grant does not require to be paid back by the student. This grant is named after former US Senator Claiborne Pell and is known to help 5.4 million part-time and full-time students all over the country.

Obtaining a loan, scholarship or grant is not an easy process. The government or the institution makes sure they award these to the most deserving individuals. And in the case of having to pay the money back, they award it to those who they think can do so.

Applying for the Federal Pell Grant will require a lot of paperwork as well as a lot of patience. Let’s discuss the specifics on who are most likely to be granted.

First and foremost, you will have to have a FAFSA (Free Application for Student Aid) on file. The same applies to many other scholarships and grants. Application of FAFSA starts on January 1st of every year.

Make sure you fill out the form when the day comes so that you can apply for different grants and scholarships. If in case you will be awarded this grant, you will have to fill up the FAFSA every year in order for you to keep the grant.

Naturally, you also have to be a citizen of this country. Eligible non-citizens or those with a green card can also be eligible for this grant.

The Pell grant is only awarded to an undergraduate student. Meaning, you won’t be qualified for this grant if you already have a college degree or are going to enroll for a master’s degree.

If you wish to acquire post graduate degree, there are other grants that you should look into. You will also have to have a high school diploma, no college will admit you if you don’t.

Upon application, you will be asked to sign an agreement stating that you will only use the funds solely for educational purposes. Also that you do not currently have another federal student loan nor do you owe a refund for any previous grant.

How much does the grant cover?

I cannot and won’t be able to tell you how much exactly you will be receiving since your conditions will have to be assessed by the government to determine how much you need. The amount varies from individual to individual although the maximum award was $5,550 in the school years 2010 up to 2012.

Factors that will determine the amount that you will be granted are the costs to attend your chosen school, whether you will be a part-time or a full-time student, how long you intend to stay in school and your financial needs.

Your chances of eligibility may be limited if you have been incarcerated. Same goes if you have a conviction for drug offence and are serving involuntary civil commitment. You will only be able to take advantage of the Federal Pell grant for no more than 12 semesters.

Nursing Program That Caters to You

Nursing is a profession that has gained a lot of popularity recently. We all hear of people going to college and taking up a nursing course. This is because of the high demand of nurses in our country. A lot of institutions, not only hospitals, employ nurses. Nursing homes, companies, schools and private individuals do too.

The main reason why a lot of people are becoming nurses is because it is a great job that pays very well and has a flexible schedule. This sounds ideal for single mothers, doesn’t it? It is. A lot of single mothers’ are nurses.

Now you probably have entertained the idea of getting into this career but the fact that you will have to go back to school has scared you away. You are already raising a child or children and you could hardly manage your life the way it is.

Let me tell you that the idea of working hard shouldn’t scare you away. It will only be temporary. Once you have earned your degree in nursing, trust me you will feel very much rewarded. Aside from your current hectic schedule, money is another problem.

You can hardly make ends meet and to have to pay for your tuition is unimaginable. Let me tell you again that this shouldn’t hurdle your dream. There are several nursing programs in the country that will help you go through all this.

I am not just referring to any nursing program but one that caters to single parents just like you. There are several universities and schools that are more than willing to help and support you.
They have a very strong support system that will make your schooling much easier.

Some of them even have a housing program. This is a place where single mothers’ live together in order to help each other. Yes, you will be living under one roof with fellow single mothers who are studying nursing. If you have to go to school, you won’t have to worry about day care since you will all alternately take care of each others’ child.

These schools will also offer you moral support. It will come with counseling sessions, through mentors and classes that will teach you how to become an even better mother. You really don’t have to go through all the hardships all by yourself. These classes and mentors will teach you parenting skills as well as managing your life entirely.

Requirements for admissions to these schools vary from each other. Make sure to check them all out or even better, apply to the ones that you like. Admissions usually include an interview with the Dean and some academic requirements.

Your child must also be between the ages 5 and 10 for you to be considered. Again, these requirements may not apply to all of the universities with nursing programs for single mothers. Take the time to check them out, it just might be the one to make your future m uch brighter.

After all these, you will definitely get out of university not only with a degree in nursing but armed with life skills too.

Student Loans That You Should Consider

We know that a college degree can help land us a higher paying job. Not only that, it will also pave a new road for a brighter future for us and our kids. In a lot of career fields, higher education is the only way for you to earn a promotion.

Being a single mother is hard. You have to take care of your child and earn money all at the same time. Going back to school is no longer an option because you just couldn’t imagine how hard it would be to juggle the finances.

Let me tell you that being a single parent shouldn’t stop anybody from attaining a degree. It will be hard the moment that you embark on this educational journey but I assure you that it will pay off in the long run.

If you cannot afford to go back to school, know that it isn’t the end of your dream yet. You still have other options that will help you earn that college degree. I am talking about students loans. They are ideal for busy, single mothers like us. Let’s discuss why:

1. Federal Stafford Loan – this type of loan is good for you if you wish to study only part-time. Perhaps if you still couldn’t afford to quit your job completely. This is quite a popular loan for having a fixed and low interest rates. You can borrow up to $20,000 for every school year.

The Stafford loan is available to both undergraduate and graduate single mother students. For the more financially needy individuals, you can even benefit from the subsidized Stafford loan where the Department of Education will pay for your accrued interest at some point.

2. Federal Perkins Loan – The Federal Perkins loan is also available for graduate, undergraduate and professional courses. Both full-time and part-time students can apply for this too. The amount that you will be able to borrow in this type of loan is based on your needs and it will increase on your second year of enrollment. This loan is granted to the student who is most needy and is also on a first-come, first-served basis.

3. Federal PLUS loan – If your parent/parents are willing to help you, then this just might be the loan for you. Your parents will have to undergo a credit check though and you will be disapproved if they have filed for bankruptcy in the last five years. The good thing about this is that you can be granted to borrow up to the total cost of your education and the interest rate is fixed.

4. Private loans – If you have tried all the federal state loans, then this is your last option. You should only look into private student loans after you have tried applying for federal state loans since private loans have a much higher interest rate and have steeper terms and conditions.

There are many companies that offer private student loans so take a look at each and every one of them. They all have different rates as well as terms so be sure that you have the best deal before you sign the contract.

What You Need To Know About College Grants Before You Apply

College grants are dreams come true for a lot of single mothers. It gives us the hope of a brighter future without too much burden today. Because taking care of our families all by ourselves leaves us with little or no money leftover at the end of every month at all, a college grant can take care of education.

It means bigger chances of us landing a higher paying job in the future. College grants seem ideal but what you should know is that it isn’t all sunshine every day. Looking for one where you will be qualified is a task. Getting approved is another.

There are 6 things that you should know about college grants:

  1. For anybody to be approved of a federal government grant, you must have a FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) on file. Application of it starts during every first of January. It is important to apply for it when January starts even if you still aren’t sure about going back to college.

    Even if you decide to do so mid-year, you can still be qualified for these types of grant. Failure to fill out this application form can mean you will still have to wait for months until it is available again.

  2. Not all grants will cover all of your school expenses. It normally just takes care of basic tuition and books while all the extra expenses must be shouldered by you. This doesn’t apply to all college grants since each and every one varies. Do your research well to find one that you will benefit from the best.
  3. Don’t just narrow down your search on “college grants for single moms/parents”. You may also be qualified for other grants such as for low-income families. Look into the many college grants out there and don’t be shy to ask. You just might be approved of a college grant that doesn’t outright say “for single moms/parents”.
  4. Before you agree to a grant, read all of its terms and conditions first. Most grants will ask something from you in return. Usually, grants will require you to do service for your community or some sort of work. Before diving into it, be sure that you will be able to fulfill your end of the bargain. Otherwise, you will receive sanctions or worse, your grant will be revoked.
  5. Grants are different from scholarships. Grants are given to individuals based on their needs such as those with low-incomes while scholarships are given to those who have met a certain criteria or grade in academics. Grant is where you will be asked for some work or report in return. Scholarship on the other is where you will be required to meet a certain grade point.
  6. State grants are also available. Unexpected places where you can find college grants are the unemployment office, economic office and your county’s family services.

5 Single Parent Friendly College Programs

There was a time when going to college wasn’t possible for single parents. We, single moms, very well know that we can only do so much. We have our hands full with our little ones. Getting a degree would be overdoing it.

Earning a degree also meant being away from our babies. College and kids just didn’t go hand-on-hand. We couldn’t have both. We had to choose just one.

It’s a good thing that nowadays, universities are starting to realize our dreams and they even support us. There are now several college programs for single parents. Having the school’s support makes things so much easier for us. Imagine going to college with several other single parents. You read that right. You can now got to school and take care of your baby all at the same time. Here are a few college programs that support single parents.

Parent-children programs

A dream come true for every single parent who wished to provide a better life for their family. Some universities have now found a way to help us fulfill our dreams and make earning a degree so much easier. There are several academic, social and residential programs for us.

Social

We all know that taking care of our kids can sometimes take a toll on us. Couple that with the stress of college life, it can be very hard to cope. This is why some universities have come up with social programs that allow single parents to support each other through support systems. Problems and stress become easier to deal with if we have someone to share it with right?

Academics

If you go to school not only will you learn about the course that you have signed up for, you will also learn parenting skills. Schools now offer parenting skills courses and seminars to enable single parents to raise their children the best possible way.

Residential

College dorms and apartments are now open to kids. You can have your little ones live with you on campus. That means coming home to them right after school. The benefits don’t stop here; some schools even offer daycare programs.

Online degrees

If you feel that the above mentioned programs still aren’t reason enough to get back on campus then consider earning a degree online. Lots of universities now offer online programs.

You will be able to earn an in-demand degree from the comforts of your own home. This way it’s much easier to juggle motherhood because you don’t have to leave your child behind.

Some universities even offer blended programs where you take some courses online and some on campus itself. This way you get to have the best of both worlds.

These college programs for single parents are ideal. Never would we have guessed ten years ago that universities would offer this much help. Now we can pursue our dreams of having the best education while still fulfilling our needs as mothers.