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Ballet Talk for Dancers
tutumom

Yikes! College? Training? Financial aid? Oh my!

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Kellinger

Tutumom, I understand completely where you are coming from. There is hope though. Having been in the same boat as you currently find yourself. Don't rule anything out just yet.

 

DD did not have any financial aid her freshman year - none. She didn't apply for scholarships and did not complete fafsa. Oh and she was an out of state student. When I had calculated the cost, it had appeared that it was going to be about $50k a year. She was offered the option of loans by the school itself but her dad told her to accept them and only use them as a last resort. I wasn't happy about her potentially having even $50k debt for one year of school to pay off. Her freshman year turned out not to be that expensive - it was still expensive but it wasn't nearly the $50k anticipated. I can't give you the actual numbers at the moment.

 

DD proceeded to become a resident met all the requirements for in-state residency the following August so that has brought the cost down tremendously. She has received assistance through grants (fafsa) and been granted a couple scholarships which has made the cost affordable. Last year (sophomore) she received housing assistance which helped tremendously.

 

DD had wanted to do a double major but couldn't decide on what she wanted to pursue so she will graduate with a minor instead (plus she didn't want to stay an extra year to complete a double major). DD has carried anywhere from 18-21 hours per semester every year and has taken some classes during the summer as well as SI's.

 

Point being that it has not ended up costing nearly what I had feared and keeping fingers crossed, she will graduate May 2015 without any loans. Hope this helps. The best thing I can tell you is I realize that it is daunting and nerve wracking right now, but don't rule anything out yet.

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lovemydancers

Bear in mind that when schools offer loans, only $5,500 is offered to the freshman student. The rest is in the form of a Parent Plus loan, and that is the parents' debt, not the student's. The student him/herself doesn't come out of school with hundreds of thousands of dollars in loans (I believe $26,000 is the limit for undergrads), the parents do.

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dancemaven

I could be wrong, but I believe that $5,500/$26,000 debt limit is for Federally-funded student loans only.

 

Additional student debt load can be (and often is) incurred in the form of private (more expensive) loans. They may require a co-signer, but the debt is the student's (and the co-signer is there to chase also, if there is a default). Some students do not have parents willing/able to take on Parent Plus or any other parent loan.

 

I don't think anyone would be quite so bent out of shape at the 'student loan debt crisis' if the total possible student debt load was $26,000.

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lovemydancers

Good clarification, dancemaven. Those private loans would have to be sought independently, and yes, I suppose the student might be allowed to borrow with a co-signer. My comment was about interpreting the school's financial package, and that parents should expect the "gap" offering to be a Parent Plus loan. Many parents initially think that loan is the student's responsibility.

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momster

What states are reasonably possible to gain residency in? This would be a huge savings. Looking at Indiana, Oklahoma, Utah, Arizona for state university ballet programs.

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tutumom

Yes, the parent loan is the responsibility of the parent. Max for the student is $6700 I believe. We found out by reading a lot that if a parent applies and gets turned down for a Parent Loan, then the student max loan goes up $4K.

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dancemaven

momster, you will need to look at each University's website. They can make their own rules for what qualifies as 'residency'. Some schools within the same state may have different 'residency' requirements. Typically, most State schools do not permit 'residency status' to change during the four years of undergrad. After all, those residency rates are supposedly because the State's taxpayers have been paying into the school for all those years leading up to college---and not just a convenience decision to get a better price on school.

 

There are, of course, exceptions to that general rule. Check the Universities' websites.

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adam12

There are some odd loopholes in residency rules. When I was in grad school out of state I happened to work 30+ hours at a local firm.

 

My department chair suggested that I would qualify for in-state status because I was paying taxes.

 

I never checked because I had an assistantship and did not need to change status.

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daisychain

Just a little warning about those private loans to the student co-signed by a parent: I finished school with a relatively small student loan ($12,000). Several years later, when I was a fully independent, self supporting adult, I applied for a deferment of this loan in order to enter a graduate program. The deferment was denied, because my father was a co-signer, and they said that if I could not afford to pay while I was in school, he would have to do it instead. There was no way I could ask him to do this; the understanding was always that the loan was my responsibility. So if a student wants or needs to defer a loan for some reason, even years after graduation, those co-signing arrangements can throw a wrench into things.

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adam12

Yikes! Good to know

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dancemaven

Establishing residency status for grad school and residency status for undergrad can be two different animals. :wink: It's often much easier at the grad school level.

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kathie

Thanks so much for starting this topic, as I have had some sleepless nights trying to figure out how to pay for college too. I also am concerned with my DD having a huge debt because even with a very good paying job after college, it's hard to pay off that amount of money. On the other hand, I think that the skills and talents and drive that our children have will serve them well in any occupation that they choose and they can also turn to dance science, sports medicine, medical school and law school while still pursuing that passion they all have.

I feel that some people do have the funds to send their children to whatever school that they want, and I am very happy for those people, but it's also very possible that those children will not value their education in the same way as our less privileged children. Who knows, it can also be very exciting to watch them as they struggle and succeed! A wonderful accomplishment in my opinion.

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dixie

I know that it is relatively simple to establish in-state residency at the University of Utah. When we were there, I believe Admissions told us you had to stay in Utah for one year, with no more than 30 days spent out of the state. You also had to transfer your driver's license to Utah. This basically equates to staying in Utah for one school year and one summer. Admissions actually encourages the students to try and establish residency. I'm sure they will answer any specific questions you may have.

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love to see you dance

It is also easy to establish residency in Michigan, requires 1 year in state with proof of providing a signed lease, pay stubs etc and changing to a mIchigan drivers license. Other states such as Arizona, California require much more. The schools financial aid office or admissions office should be able to let you know the requirements

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kiwiwdancer

At the campus tour at U of Arizona we were told it is almost impossible to establish residency in Arizona. They said they had never heard of anyone able to do it. But to talk to admissions if you think you can.

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