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The Ultimate Guide To Funding Your Education / By: Shanel Brown

Have you reached that exciting moment in your life when you walked across that graduation stage and got your high school diploma? Think about where you are now, you are probably wondering if this is the end or just the beginning of something amazing.  For many young adults, going to college is the next big step they want to take. But the question for many is, can the average student actually afford to go to college?

The cost of college has increased over the years and continues to climb. The Education Dates Initiative states, “The average annual cost of attending college in the United States is $35,551. A public 4-year university in-state student pays $25,707 for one academic year.” (Hanson, 2023).  Additionally, the National Center for Education Statistics reported that every academic year, usually the average private, nonprofit university student pays $54,501 overall, $37,641 of which goes toward tuition and fees. (Fast Facts, 2023).         

It's understandable to worry about how you will afford it all. But here is the good news: there are plenty of options out there to help you finance your education. Do not let the fear of finances hold you back from your dreams! For instance, Gregory Mason,  who is now a lawyer after graduating from Syracuse University says, “My parents and the BLM Foundation scholarships played a huge role in helping me pay for school”, and he advises starting the process early, like during your sophomore year. Mica Saddler, a 23-year-old college student at Malcolm X Community College, says to “focus on your educational goal and reach out to different people. Networking is very important.”

There are lots of funding options based on income that include scholarships and grants such as the Jackie Robinson Foundation, Thurgood Marshall, United Negro Funding and more. Several local unions are also known for helping out young people in school. Instead of being discouraged, remember that there are many organizations and programs around that can help. You should not be afraid to explore them and pursue your next big adventure in life.

List of sources and interviews:

Gregory Mason, Lawyer,

Mica Saddler, a college student,


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