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FREE: The New Price of a College Degree in America

 

Concerned about the high cost of college?  Looking for ways to reduce your debt load?  As a student or parent of a college-bound student, you look at the sticker price for a degree and wonder if you really can afford the cost.  If you’ve ever worried about how to manage this cost, I have great news for you!  Free is the new price of a college degree in America.

By now we’re all familiar with the news media reports:  College costs continue to skyrocket at least 4% to 6% each year far outpacing general inflation.  A family with a toddler today may be looking at spending far more to educate one child than the cost of their first house.

How Does Free Sound?

But what if paying for your education wasn’t a valid concern?  If you were free from financial worries about paying the bill, would you, a friend or family member seek a college degree? Would the opportunity for a FREE education be enough of a carrot for you or a loved one to pursue the dream of a college degree?

Well, the good news is that there are now more options available than ever before to provide a FREE college education to those who want one.

What Does a Free College Education Look Like?

When you pass someone on a college campus who is getting a free education, they won’t look any different than you or your student.

And now with new technology, the college campus can be anywhere in the cloud and free is a mouse click away.

World Education University

World Education University or WEU (www.theweu.com) is the brainchild of a number of Silicon Valley types who have developed an online platform to deliver accredited programs to anyone anywhere for free.  Offering more than twenty-five undergraduate and graduate degree programs and 225 courses ranging from STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) to business to criminal justice and digital media, the University is supported by corporate sponsorships and advertising.  According to a press release dated February 5, 2013, WEU is the first and only free degree-granting online college.

MOOC 2.0:  Massive Open Online Courses

WEU is part of a trend toward harnessing technology to deliver college courses online.  MOOCs provide interactive user forums that help build a community for the students, professors, and teaching assistants (TAs). MOOCs are a recent development in distance education. Other initiatives include Ed-X (www.edx.org) which offers courses from world-class colleges like MIT and Stanford University.  To find a list of courses and programs available, you can visit (www.mooc-list.com).

Pay It Back By Paying Forward

Another option to consider for getting a free ride in college is to choose a career path that offers free college tuition incentives.

There are a number of jobs and career options that offer to pay or forgive loans when you pay back by paying forward when you work in an under-served community.

This is an often overlooked aspect of college planning.  These careers—often requiring a time commitment—essentially offer the opportunity to earn your college degree with little or no expense by providing student loan forgiveness either in part or in whole!

These unheard of offers incentivize college goers by paying a portion of the student’s associated school expenses in exchange for a contractual agreement to work in a specified job—usually in an under-served segment of the population—for a future agreed period of time.

Designed to entice individuals towards a certain need, staffing shortage, a field of specialization or specific demographic region, the financial assistance initiatives often include the following industries and fields:

  • Childcare Providers—operating in under-served regions
  • Teachers—both public and private—of designated low income districts
  • Medical Professionals (i.e. Nurses, Doctors, Pharmacists, Medical Practitioners, Psychologists)
  • Health Service Professionals
  • Public Service jobs
  • Armed Forces and National Guard
  • Peace Corps/U.S. Civil Service
  • Law Enforcement
  • Various occupations located in hazardous areas

 

For more specifics and an exhaustive list of participating industries and careers, please CLICK HERE to contact your college funding professional.