Trying to save money on college applications? Good news! There are actually quite a few colleges that allow you to apply for free. Free scholarship is a grant or payment made to support a student’s education, awarded on the basis of academic or other achievement. In this article, we’ll provide some general information about application fees along with a comprehensive list of all the schools that offer free applications.
Most colleges charge application fees in the $40-50 range, but they can sometimes be as high as $90 (looking at you, Stanford). Many top schools charge application fees of $75 or more.To put this in context, suppose you are applying to five different schools. If three have $50 application fees and two have $75 application fees, you’ll be spending $300 on applications alone. Then there’s the matter of sending your test scores.Sending SAT scoresto five schools at $11.25 per report will cost you another $56.25, soyou’re spending over $350 just to send in all the required materials. That’s not small change for most people, so application fees are something you might take into account in your college search process.
Fortunately, many schools, even ones that have very high application fees, offer waivers to students with financial need. In order to be eligible for a fee waiver, you will need to meet at least one of the following criteria:
You were provided with a fee waiver to take the SAT or ACT
You are enrolled in a Free or Reduced Price Lunch Program
Your family income falls within the Income Eligibility Guidelines set by the USDA Food and Nutrition Service
You’re enrolled in a federal, state or local program that aids students from low-income families
Your family receives public assistance
You live in federally subsidized housing or a foster home
You canrequest a fee waiver form here.Once you fill out the form, your guidance counselor has to sign it, and then you should mail it to the admissions office of the college you have selected. Alternatively, if you want to avoid paying hundreds of dollars in application fees or going through the process of obtaining a fee waiver, you should consider applying to some of the schools with free applications that are listed in this article.
Making Smart Choices With Application Fees
If your dream school has a $50 application fee and you’re considering not applying because of the cost, you need toconsider the costs versus the long term benefits.Compared to the total cost of attending college, that fee is a drop in the bucket. Over the course of four years, if you plan on attenting a private college, you’ll end up paying close to $200,000 on average in total cost. Even for public schools the price tag will be close to $100,000.The fee is a very small part of the overall expenses that come along with attending college.
Don’t sacrifice the opportunity to attend a school that’s a perfect fit for you because of an application fee. You’ll most likely end up regretting your decision later. Similarly, you shouldtry not to choose schools that don’t fit what you’re looking for just because they have lower application fees. If you check out some of the no fee schools that I’ve listed and find that you really like them, then it’s a win-win, but don’t let it influence you too much if there are other fee-charging schools that you think you will really love!
Colleges That Don’t Require Application Fees (By State)
Note thatsome schools require a fee for paper applications, which I’ve indicated in the list. If you submit your materials online the fee will be waived.
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