Imagine that you are a grad school owner.
You offer only one class with 10 attendees. Now, let’s say that 7 of those students cannot pay your class right now so they asked your brother (a banker) for a student loan. By the end of the course, they will pay him back.
What happens if 5 of those 7 did not repay your brother on time?
This is exactly what’s happening to lenders and educational institutions in the US. Approximately, 77% of grad students apply for a student loan, and from those, only 30% pays-off their debt before leaving school.
Although student loan might be an option so you can get to a renowned institution, there are other financial opportunities for you.
We from Elite Personal Finance compiled the pros and cons of student loans, school/college grants and scholarships for you. By the end of the post, you will get a list of the 10 best scholarships and student loans available.
What is a Student Loan?
A student loan is a category of loan offered to students so they are able to pay for educational-related expenses. These expenses range from books, college tuition, living expenses to supplies.
The main criteria for a student loan is paying back the amount borrowed with interests. In comparison, you must see a student loan the same way as a mortgage or car loan.
There is also a variety of types of student loans divided between federal and private.
Federal Student Loans (FAFSA): Stafford Loans (or Direct subsidized federal loans), unsubsidized loans, PLUS Loans, Parent PLUS Loans.
Private student loans: In school for parents and students, refinanced loans for graduates and Consolidation loans.
- Pros and cons of student loan
Pros of Student Loans:
- They help cover educational expenses;
- They increase your opportunity for better colleges;
- Students might use the amount to cover other financial expenses besides education;
- If paid on time, they help to build credit.
Cons of Student Loans:
- They must be repaid;
- Savings and income from part-time job may not be enough to cover it;
- You start your financial live with debt;
- You may have to sacrifice other life goals;
- Defaulting will damage your credit really bad.
List: 10 best student loans
|1||• Loan for graduates and undergraduates.|
• Repayment options.
• Term lenghts from 7, 10 or 15 years.
|2||• Loan for graduates, undergraduates and parent loans.|
• Repayment options.
• Customer support 24/7.
|3||• Undergraduate, graduate, and MBA loans with fixed or variable APR rates|
• Employers partnership options.
• Forbearance under difficult times.
|4||• Loan for graduates, undergraduates and parent loans.|
• Free Scholarship registration.
• Term lenghts from 5 to 10 years.
|5||• Considers other eligibility criteria besides Credit Score and income.|
• Discounts for automatic payments.
• In-school interest only, deferred repayment, and a $25 minimum payment plan are available.
|6||• Parent Loans and student loans refinancing.|
• Career coaching and financial advisors.
• 0.125% rate discount for members.
|7||• Student loans for undergraduate, graduate, medical professionals, and post-law studies.|
• Refinancing options.
• 0.50% rate reduction with auto payments.
|8||• Student loans for undergraduate, graduate, MBA, medical professionals, and law studies.|
• Good grades and auto-debit award discounts.
• Specialists available 24/7.
|9||• Quotes from different lenders with no credit damage.|
• Great customer service.
• Minimal information required.
|10||• Private Student Loans, Student Loan Refinancing and Parent PLUS Loan Refinancing available.|
• 0.25% rate reduction with auto payments.
• Cosigner release to creditworthy borrowers.
What is a Scholarship?
Scholarship is a financial support for students so they are able to further their education. It is offered by different institutions, schools, non-profits, community organizations, and businesses.
Their approval is usually merit-based but there are other eligibility factors. These factors might range from grade point average, specific academic programs, degree level, age, nationality, etc.
Some scholarships cover any education-related cost. While others include tuition or limited aspects depending on the program.
Students must also be aware of the application period. The sooner they apply for the program, the higher the chances of getting the scholarship. Each organization provides a limited amount of funds per year.
- Pros and cons of scholarship
Pros of Scholarships:
- You do not have to pay them back.
- They make your resume stand out.
Cons of Scholarships:
- Very selective programs with high competition.
- You have to maintain some requirements during each semester.
- It might be less flexible on how to spend compared to Loans.
List: 10 best scholarships
|1||• Average accepted SAT range: 1760 – 2140|
• Average accepted ACT range: 25 - 32
• Average tuition: $12,696 (in-State), $35,574 (out-of-State)
|2||• Average accepted SAT range: 1650 – 1980|
• Average accepted ACT range: 24 - 29
• Average tuition: $34,480
|3||• Average accepted SAT range: 1700 – 1890|
• Average accepted ACT range: 25 - 29
• Average tuition: $6,467 (In-State), $21,633 (out-of-State)
|4||• Average accepted SAT range: 1740 – 2030|
• Average accepted ACT range: 26 - 31
• Average tuition: $6,313 (In-State), $28,590 (out-of-State)
|5||• Average accepted SAT range: 1670 – 2060|
• Average accepted ACT range: 25 - 31
• Average tuition: $9,798 (In-State), $34,722 (out-of-State)
|6||• Average accepted SAT range: 1820 – 2110|
• Average accepted ACT range: 28 - 32
• Tuition: $43,040
|7||• Average accepted SAT range: 1630 – 1990|
• Average accepted ACT range: 24 – 30
• Average Tuition: $12,192 (In-State), $35,070 (out-of-State)
|8||• Average accepted SAT range: 1080-1290|
• Average accepted ACT range: 22 – 27
• Average Tuition: $5,472 (In-State), $16,632 (out-of-State)
|9||• Average accepted SAT range: 1890 – 2180|
• Average accepted ACT range: 28 – 32
• Tuition: $43,746
|10||• Average accepted SAT range: 1660 – 2030|
• Average accepted ACT range: 23 – 30
• Average Tuition: $13,456 (In-State), $22,878 (out-of-State)
What is a School or College Grant?
School or college grants are financial aid provided for the students in a financial-need situation.
Grants are also an option for those who are willing to start a specific project abroad and need financing for it. It might come from non-profit organizations, private companies, the Federal and State Government.
Differently from Scholarships, school grants are often need-based and their requirements range from family income, dependency status, full-time or part-time status, students with disabilities, etc.
The most common types of school grants are the Pell Grants, TEACH Grants, the Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants (FSEOG), and Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grants. You might also find State grants and private school grants depending on each educational institution.
- Pros and cons of school Grant
Pros of School Grants:
- They do not have to be repaid.
- You might get more than one.
Cons of School Grants:
- Restricted: Financial-need based only.
- Highly competitive.
List: 10 best school/college grants
|1||• Need based.|
• Maximum award: $5,920.
• Must maintain enrollment in an undergraduate course of study.
|2||• Maximum award: $4,000.|
• Must be enrolled fulltime.
• Teach highly needed subjects.
|3||Federal Supplemental Education Opportunity Grants (FSEOG)||• Awards range: $100 - $4,000/ year.|
• For students who need a lot of financial aid
|4||Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grants||• Maximum award: $5,920.|
• Maximum of 12 semesters of eligibility.
|5||• Estimated cost of attendance: $ 70,010.|
• Different payment options.
• Need based only.
|6||• Average merit : $ 6,600.|
• Need based only.
• Foreign students options available.
|7||• Financial Aid by income range: $ 49,157 - $17,456.|
• Average grant per student: $ 29,963
|8||• Financial Aid by income range: $60,053 - $23,461.|
• Average grant per student: $ 44,922
|9||• Financial Aid by income range: $52,227 - $20,012.|
• Average grant per student: $ 37,224
|10||• Financial Aid by income range: $57,416 - $24,776.|
• Average grant per student: $ 43,650