Going back to college can be a good way to become a more valuable asset to an employer, though finding ways to pay for the expense of returning to school can be a problem. For mothers making this decision, coming up with the money can be even harder due to family obligations. One solution is to secure scholarships and grants that can provide additional funds to help pay college tuition and other expenses.
Financial aid for those attending college can come from loans or scholarships. While loans are often easier to procure, they also need to be paid back following graduation, increasing the amount of debt the student incurs. Scholarships and grants, on the other hand, do not, which means less debt for the graduate.
There are a wide variety of sources for grants and scholarships available to women returning to school:
*Federal Pell Grant – Since being low income is one of the qualifying factors, this program can be extremely beneficial to single mothers looking to increase their income through education. The grant will pay for tuition and a portion for books.
*Childcare grants – Some technical schools and community colleges will provide grants to mothers who are in need of child care. While the money does not go toward tuition at the school, it can help with the expense of having someone take care of the children. That can also provide peace of mind. Check with the financial aid office of the school for possibilities.
*Charlotte W. Newcombe Scholarships – Women who have older children and who likely put off their own college education to raise those children may be eligible for one of these scholarships. Applicants must be older than 25 and cannot have pursued a college degree before.
*Educational Foundation for Women in Accounting – This organization seeks to help advance the career of women who have a degree in the field of accounting. Award amounts vary from year to year, and proof of financial need must be shown.
*American Association of Women – This group tries to help women financially who are pursuing degrees in fields historically dominated by men, including math, science and engineering. Amounts range from $5,000 to $20,000.
*American Business Women’s Association – Mothers looking to continue their education in hopes of improving their career options may be eligible for a scholarship through this organization. It will provide financial aid to those learning skills that will help improve their resume and obtain a better paying job.
Returning to college for a new degree can vastly improve the chances for a mother to secure a new job or improve their current position. While it can be difficult to pay for considering all the family expenses already needing attention, securing scholarships or grants can help reduce this expense. This will also allow the future graduate to enjoy their new degree without racking up a mountain of debt.