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College and Student Debt

            Worries about student loans make us feel anxious of the financial burden of having to pay it off after graduating. Many students enter college without thinking about the financial realities of student debt and have never discussed a budget with their parents. To live a successful, financially stable life in our society today, students should realize the importance of managing finances wisely. For as hard as students try to save money, they tend to splurge in college; we decide to go shopping for a new wardrobe, watch a movie, and go out to eat at restaurants with friends on the weekend. Budgeting helps us understand where our money is spent and also builds up our spending responsibilities. Our jobs as college students are to stick to a budget, understand loans before we borrow them, and stay financially informed.
             Considering the whole cost of attending college, scholarships and financial aid are crucial to ensure that one won't accumulate huge student debt payments after graduating. In the past decade, the costs of living has increased greatly. Merit-based financial aid programs are offered to students who meet a merit requirement based on their high school GPA and sometimes their SAT or ACT scores. Students are usually eligible for state merit aid if they attend a college within their home state. Though qualified students are able to receive aid from scholarships, the U.S government and 4-year universities offer alternatives such as federal grants and federal loans. "Federal student aid includes grants, loans, and work study to cover such expenses as tuition, on-campus housing, books, and transportation" (Federal Student Aid). High school and college students may apply for merit-based scholarships and also submit FAFSA, a free and income-based application for federal student aid to qualify for free money to pay for college.
             Grants are a type of financial aid you do not have to repay while loans are borrowed money you have to repay with interest.

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