Hey Josh, thanks for the question. Congratulations on getting into college and getting to a place where you have options. The $3,000 you have left out of pocket probably seems like a lot of money to you right now, and it is. Here are few things you could be doing to come up with that money.

Applying for scholarships!

Spend an hour a day applying for outside scholarships. The College Board tool lets you search for them in one place. It takes a little bit of work but your efforts will pay in big ways, and hey, you get to continue to practice your writing skills.

Part time jobs!

Another option would be to apply for part time jobs. If you break the $3,000 into 12 months, you are looking at about $250/mo which you can be manageable with a part time job making minimum wage. You can ask the college to do a payment plan and see how those payments add up. Two things to watch out for: 1) Are you incurring a fee for doing this? 2) Are you paying interest on this plan?

Take inventory of your skills!

Take an inventory of your skills. This will allow you to find out what you are a natural in and use that to light some entrepreneurial fire. The key here is to understand what you can bring to the table, fill a need and become more valuable. Take 7 friends and family members and have them answer the following questions about you: 1) What are a few words you would use to describe me? 2) If I had a side hustle, what would it be and why? 3) What is one thing you need to help with to achieve your goals? — You can do this with a simple google form, a feel good jar (that’s a cool activity)!

Developing a side hustle!

Here’s a cool idea if you are handy, is start making masks at home and selling them online. Who can you sell them to? Think about a target niche, one could be incoming college students via the facebook class groups (I know some of you don’t even use it, but there’s almost a lot of chatter in those from students). Another niche could be airline travelers. There was a recent online article discussing the requirement of many airlines moving to requiring travelers to wear a mask.

Josh, you see, you have many options on how to make it to college this fall. Good luck!