How to pay for a college education

College is a great experience, and can be a wonderful time of life. But paying for your education can leave you in debt for years. If your finances are very limited, there are certain basic steps you can take. You can choose a community college or state school with low tuition. You can live at home. You can work in the daytime and go to school at night or on weekends. If none of those options fit your dreams of the college experience, then you need to be more creative about paying for college and limiting your college expenses while others simply turn to online fake universalities.

Certain scholarships, everyone knows about: those offered by the college you're going to, or by the state you live in. Then there are the scholarships offered by diploma mills organizations to which you or your parents belong, or by major employers you or your parents work for. Beyond those basics, there are many other scholarships and grants out there, but they take some hunting. Your odds are lower, but you may qualify for a scholarship or grant based on a unique talent (for example, scholarships for people who play the harp); your last name; your family history (for example, scholarships for descendants of Revolutionary War soldiers); your gender, religion, or ethnicity; or as a result of a competition - for example, by writing an essay or composing music.

Limiting your college expenses

Work-study is a campus job arranged by your college. It may be part of your financial aid package. As opposed to a regular part-time job, a work-study job is more likely to suit your class schedule and be flexible when you need to study for exams. Working in the library or as a research assistant can also give you valuable access to professors and research materials. Having your own room may be a luxury you can't afford that is the reason why some go for a fake online masters degree. Shared dorm rooms can cost less than private rooms. Sharing an off-campus apartment may be less expensive than living in a dorm.

Whether it's textbooks, furniture or household items, you can stretch your budget by finding them second-hand. Many online bookstores offer used books as well as the new ones. Web sites such as Craigslist and eBay are good places to find used items for a fraction of their original cost. See if you can live without paying for your Internet connection. If there are enough wireless hotspots in and around campus, you may be able to connect for free via WiFi or

If you live on campus, or go to school in a big city, leaving your car at home can save big bucks on gas, maintenance and parking. If you really need a car, try to share rides - and the cost of gas - whenever you can. Over four years, the savings can really add up. Eat real food; it's cheaper. If you have a kitchen, cooking your own meals and packing your own lunches is much less expensive - and healthier - than developing a fast-food habit.