Many college students who are pursuing a degree through an online course or a distance education program may opt to seek out financial assistance from traditional sources like scholarships and grants, or even loans, but there are some students who may be able to keep these costs low and, as a result, avoid debt from student loans that may cause financial problems after they have completed their degree program and enter into the workforce. Currently, there is a great deal of uncertainty and instability in the job market for new graduates and even long-term unemployed men and women, as there are worries still on the ability of certain individuals to keep their job during these difficult financial times.
This can obviously make a graduate’s debt situation worse if they exit their degree program or college with student loans and have no income with which they can repay what they owe. Yet, online college courses that may be more affordable than traditional classes and, even in the case of some distance education degree programs available from major universities, students might be able to keep their borrowing to a minimum if they are careful about seeking out financial assistance and looking at their long-term online college plans and goals.
As an example, some students may be in a position where they are taking online courses because they do have a job and are simply looking to either further their education or earn a degree for the first time, but there are students who have extended the amount of time they are enrolled in these courses rather than pursuing a four year degree in that same timeframe. What this means is students may take longer to graduate these degree programs but since online degree courses can be more affordable, students may be able to save the money that will be required for college tuition costs and, rather than borrowing loans, pay these costs out of pocket more easily.
While online degree courses are becoming more sophisticated and major universities are even getting into the Internet degree program arena, this has also created a situation where students may be able to receive financial assistance directly from these major universities if they qualify for certain scholarships or grants. Also, students need to remember that just because they would be classified as nontraditional since they are pursuing a degree from an online course or university does not mean that they cannot apply for financial aid like FAFSA grants or scholarships specific to their current major or area of study.
Focusing on free sources of financial aid that may be offered directly from an online university or a major university’s online degree program, looking into scholarships and grants that are both general and specific in nature, as well as considering saving money to meet online university costs out-of-pocket rather than borrowing are all ways that students have used to lower the amount of debt they have after college or avoid college loan debt entirely, but when it comes to using these particular opportunities to avoid excessive college loan debt obligations, it will depend on a student’s personal goals and what decisions they make in terms of earning a college degree and financing their educational pursuits.