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Columns Votes - December 2006

How did you pay for your college education?

Comments on Scholarships and Grants

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I received the GI bill for my service in the Marine Corps in Vietnam. The GI bill covered most of my undergraduate degree and a portion of my graduate. Basically paid for my service to my country. The rest of my college was paid for by part time work and student loans.

I received veterans’ benefits under the GI bill for 36 months worth of my education in addition to the above part time job and family help.

My first two years were paid for by Veterans Educational Assistance Program (VEAP). After that I received financial aid.

Thank God for Pell Grants and the like. Without them I wouldn’t have been able to accomplish graduating from the UW. The student-loan burden was heavy for 9+ years, but I had no choice as I had no help from family (too poor). I was one of the first admitted in 1983 under the EOP program—EDSS (Economically disadvantaged student services)—that admitted poor white kids in the university, and then helped us through with economic and academic counseling. It worked and I am very glad it was there, then. I am also very glad to see this ‘Husky Promise’ program come into the picture. Any extra help for the disadvantaged is greatly appreciated, mostly does not go to waste, and bodes well for this great state! It gives encouragement for high schoolers to stick with education!!!

I had GI bill, a fellowship, and served as a graduate assistant. This allowed me to get involved with campus activities.

My UW attendance was for graduate education. The tuition was paid by an EPA grant. I worked as an RA and received some monetary aid for living expenses. The RA work helped support my master’s thesis research. It all worked out quite well for me at the master’s level.

I mean athletic scholarship when I say financial aid. My parents could afford to send me to college, but it was awesome not having to pay anything and coming away from college without debt. It also took away at least one stressful element of the college experience, which was very nice.

My financial aid was in the form of scholarships. While I invested time in applying for these, in the end I graduated without a single loan payment to make.

GI Bill—best money the government ever spent.

I had a PTA scholarship for $100 my first year. Which almost covered the tuition for that year—1954. I worked to pay for books and additional expenses and for the expenses of the next three years.

Although my parents paid for most of my university education, undergraduate scholarships helped a lot. They had the added benefit of providing an incentive to keep grades high and get involved in undergraduate research, especially the Mary Gates Scholarship program.

I choose financial aid because it is the closest to the aid I received. My UW education was financed by the GI bill, which I earned with my service in Vietnam.

Tuition was paid by the GI bill. Many Korean Veterans were married with families.  Affordable housing was provided by the University (Sand Point). Family living expenses  required an outside source of income generally provided by the veterans working either part or full time.

I attended graduate school at the UW on a United States Public Health grant, which paid my tuition, books, fees, etc., plus a monthly stipend on which to live. It did not require payback. It helped immensely, as I didn’t have to work. I had the time to study. If I hadn’t had the grant, I wouldn’t have had the time to study, as I would have had to work in order to live, which takes up valuable study time.

I was hard finding time to work & keep my grades up for my scholarship also, but I managed. I know of none of my classmates who took out loans. Most of us had very little help from parents. Mostly we worked, sometimes more than one job.

The National Maritime Union’s scholarship program paid for all four years at the UW (tuition, books and supplies, even dorm costs). God bless all the scholarship programs that allow students to really study full time while they are in college. My father’s union made it possible to get a degree without going into debt.

As a military veteran, I have to say that the list you provided for Question #1 (Work, Parents/Family Members, Financial Aid) is incomplete since it doesn’t include a huge category for veterans: The GI bill.  It’s true that you could claim that the GI bill is actually “Work,” since many view it as deferred compensation—but I think that the “Work” category refers to work performed concurrently with one’s education career.  I paid for my undergraduate education with a combination of work (50% time) and GI bill, with a small amount contributed by my parents. I actually took out a small student loan, which I paid off almost immediately.  My graduate education was mostly financed through work.  Although I have one undergrad and three graduate degrees (in three different fields), I always found it essential to complement my academic work with “real-world” activities, which helped maintain both a sense of perspective and some degree of sanity.

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