How to Save Money on An Ivy League Education


One of the best ways to insure a future of financial wealth and success in business is to attend an Ivy League school. Sure, you’ll receive one of the highest quality educations possible at Princeton, Harvard, Yale and the other Ivies, but the networking you will be able to do there is just as important. Your professors will be incredibly well connected, and your fellow students are all future leaders of industry. You’ve got to think big to make it big, and don’t ever let the current sorry state of your bank account dictate what is possible. In fact, there are several ways to save money on an Ivy League education. The key is getting in, and that’s certainly no walk in the park. But once you do, consider some of these options for meeting those steep tuition payments.

First of all, Ivy League schools are just as determined to help you afford attendance as you are. In general their admissions policies are need-blind. That means they want to make sure that all of the students accepted in a given year can afford to attend, regardless of their financial situation. If you are on your own, or if you are claimed as a dependent by your family and the household yearly income is $60,000 or less, Yale and Harvard will actually fund your education completely. As in from start to finish. Princeton also wants to get you in the door without saddling you with copious amounts of debt, so they actually go with a policy that’s against loans. They will work with you to put together a mix of grants, scholarships and work study opportunities until the whole costs have been covered. You’ll find comparable programs at the other Ivies, practically guaranteeing that if you are talented enough to get their attention you won’t find your current finances a roadblock.

On top of the generous financial aid packages the Ivies offer their future students, you should also look outside the institution’s walls at other options. Do a quick internet search and you’ll uncover some sites that list all sorts of available scholarships, most of which are awarded every year. Some of them will be based on need, but what if you and your family don’t fall below those income levels. Just because you come from a middle class family doesn’t mean the Ivy League tuition is affordable. Look for merit-based scholarships. If one of the Ivies accepted you, you’ve probably got a good chance to land one of these as well. Scholarships are also available for certain talents that aren’t school related, for organizational affiliations, and even for specific communities and cultural groups.

Another option is rather unconventional, but will work if you are willing to make the sacrifices. You could handle your first year or two of education at a less expensive school and then transfer into the more expensive Ivy League program. You’ll have to really buckle down, get the best grades and compile the most impressive extracurricular record possible to insure you are readmitted. But you’ll save at least five figures in fees going this route. You might have a bit of a harder adjustment coming into an Ivy as a junior, so your learning curve will be steep. But if you plan on continuing on into graduate school, to earn a sustainability degree or a doctorate that savings could help you afford the extra years in school. Be sure to speak to your high school guidance counselor and the college admissions officer about your plans in advance, to make sure everyone is on board.

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