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General Information About Schools & Education

Education opportunities today are virtually endless. With the advent of the Internet, you can not only find schools and educational funding sources, but for many subjects you can actually teach yourself online with the millions of free information sources on the Internet.

On This Page: How to Get an Education Specialty Schools Student Loans

How to Get an Education

Education is expensive, too expensive for many people - or is it?

The number one thing to learn about education is that there is a good chance you can get an education in almost any subject if you honestly want it. Sounds trite, but it's true.

This little tidbit was not taught in my school, or probably in most schools. Schools tend to teach that you need money and perfect grades to go to college or specialty schools. Not! What you need is guts and determination. If you really want an education, here is your first learning course, check out the movie "Rudy", this movie personifies the true desire for achieving a goal. While Rudy's actual goal was to play football at Notre Dame, he ultimately earned an excellent education.

How can someone without big money and perfect grades get an education?
You find a way!

Colleges and specialty schools are run by people, so there are jobs available and usually a side benefit of these jobs is a free or reduced price education for you or your family. Even some businesses associated with colleges offer education bonuses, such as college bookstores. Some non-education related jobs offer education bonuses, such as the military and many corporations have college assistance programs. This idea can also work for K-12 private schools, parents can get a job at a private school so their kids can go to the school, kids who attend private schools are often better able to get a college scholarship.

Scholarships are another sources of college funding There are, of course, the usual major scholarships, but people often forget that there are many small scholarships that added together can pay for a college education. Small scholarships are often available from VFWs, civic and business organizations like Lions Clubs, small private donation scholarships, and many more. Your job is to find them.

Sports are a huge source of scholarships, and for women, it is an amazing opportunity, as many young women do not participate in sports during their K-12 school years, and when college time comes around, they miss a big scholarship opportunity.

Self-education is so easy on the Internet today, just about every subject under the sun is discussed, investigated, and written about. Also, low cost, used college textbooks are readily available today, even if you are no where near a college, online college bookstores abound on the Internet. Between the Internet articles and low cost textbooks there is just almost no reason that someone who really wants an education can not self-educate themselves. Self-education is not a degree, but it can help earn a degree. Some colleges will accept world knowledge towards some courses. Many businesses think a college education is the end all, but some business will appreciate a self-taught education enough to hire a person who had the perseverance to educate themselves. There are many self-taught subjects that can be learned via the Internet or from books that lead to jobs and income without attending a college. Many computer programming jobs and web page design jobs are open to anyone with knowledge. Many states will allow people to "challenge" the state's real estate and insurance tests, which just means people can take the tests without any formal education.

Junior colleges curriculums are designed to give students educations and job skills in a short period of time and for a low cost. Community colleges can also be a leap board to your real job goal. If your true desire is to become an attorney, how about starting as a paralegal, with a community college degree. Your paralegal degree can get you into a law office. If you want to be an artist, perhaps you should learn to support yourself first with commercial art classes. If you want to rise in the field of fashion magazines, maybe start with merchandising and marketing classes so you can get a job in a related field.

Another source of gaining an education is often over-looked, find a job loosely related to your area of interest. You want to be a journalist, start in the classified department and meet people and self-educate yourself. You want to be an attorney, start as a legal secretary. The job you get does not have to be directly connected to your ultimate goal, but find something close, make a list of every job that is somehow related to your area of interest and apply for a job with those companies. If you want to climb a mountain, you will need to start at the foothills and go up from there.

There are, of course, the normal avenues for scholarships through academic achievement, but if you didn't buckle down in high school, do some junior college time and get that 4.0 grade average. Don't take too many courses, do it slow and easy and do it right.

The upshot is, if you want an education, look at your educational goal like a pyramid, with your career goal at the top. The bottom of the pyramid is large with several sides and lots of opportunities all the way up the four sides. Investigate the bottom and sides, looking for a way up. It's there, you just have to find it. Best of luck!

Specialty Schools

Before you sign up for a specialty school, do some research, because some of those schools are more brag than reality. Seek out students who are attending, check out the campus, do an online search to see what people are saying about the school. Some specialty schools are very much in need, but some do not provide the real-life job opportunities they promise and you could end up with a huge tuition debt and no job. The below article is a MUST read before you decide to attend a specialty school.

Yahoo! Finance - This Bright-Eyed Young Man Was Utterly Demolished by Student Loans.

Student Loans

Chicago Tribune - How to lower your student loan payments.
Income-based repayment that limits payments to an affordable percentage of income and family size.

US New-Education - Would the Student Loan Forgiveness Act Help You? - Help A Reader – Crazy Insane Student Loan Nightmare. - Student Loans & Bankruptcy.
Student loans are difficult, but not impossible, to discharge in bankruptcy.

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