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Related Articles Browse articles about college costs and how to pay for college, financial aid including student loans and scholarships, the FAFSA and how to apply and get the most financial aid, how to find scholarships, and how to analyze college financial aid awards.
explore colleges articles
Thinking It Through

Why Go to College?

Six Ways College Is Different from High School

What's Ahead

Steps to Launch Your Journey to College

Eight Milestones on the Road to College

Your Get-Into-College Planning Calendar

Who Can Help

Meet Your College Admission Support Team

Six Best College Planning Jobs for Parents

College Fit Is Important

What Is Your Ideal College?

What's Your College Fit, Academically Speaking?

What's Your College Fit, Financially Speaking?

Features That Set Colleges Apart

What Makes Colleges Different?

What Makes a College Famous?

College Size: Small, Medium or Large?

Who's on Campus?

College Setting and Location Matter

Understanding College Selectivity

Should Your College Be Public or Private?

Outcomes Matter: Do Students Succeed?

Is a College Honors Program Right for You?

Seven Signs That Studying Abroad Might Be Right for You

Considering U.S. Military Academies

Major and Degree Options

The ABCs of College Majors

How to Choose a Major

Your College Degree Options

Is a Combined Degree Program Right for You?

Making Sense of It All

How to Choose Your Top College Priorities

Coping with Everyone's Opinions About College

Should You Consider a Gap Year?

Just for Transfer Students

Should You Transfer to Another College?

What You Need to Know Before You Decide to Transfer

Just for Parents

Words to the Wise College-Bound Parent

College Search Strategies

Five Steps to Begin Your College Search

Starting Your College List

Get Smart About College Rankings

How to Find Colleges with Strength in Your Major

How to Find Colleges If Your Major Is Undecided

Finding Financially Friendly Colleges

Colleges That Connect Work and Learning

If You Want to Play Your Sport in College

How to Tell If a College Has a Strong Study Abroad Program

Making Your First (Serious) College List

Get Help From Your College Counselor

Find Out More About Your Colleges

Mining for Gold on College Websites

Get the Most from College Visits

Why Attend College Fairs?

Tips for Your College Tours

Visit a College Without Stepping on Campus

Ten College Qualities You Shouldn't Ignore

Deciding Which Colleges Might Work for You

Looking at Colleges Side by Side

Narrowing Down Your College List

If Highly Selective Colleges Are on Your List

The Final Cut

Deciding Which Colleges to Apply To

How to Visit a College You Might Attend

college buzz articles:
money matters
Live Well and Prosper

Stay Afloat Financially at College

How to Stretch Your College Dough

College Money 101

How to Manage Debt

Protect Yourself from Identity Theft

Banking 101

Banking Options for Students

Opening Your First Checking Account

Credit Card Basics

Using Credit Wisely

Using a Debit Card

It's Cool to Save

college buzz articles:
study abroad
If You're Thinking About Studying Abroad

How to Tell If a College Has a Strong Study Abroad Program

Seven Signs That Studying Abroad Might Be Right for You

Eight Tips for a Great Study Abroad Experience

prepare & apply articles
Academics Matter

Challenge Yourself: Show Colleges You're Ready

The Benefits of Taking Honors Courses

Get Credit with Advanced Placement

Take AP Online

What Is the International Baccalaureate?

Taking College Classes in High School

Tips to Improve Your GPA


Know Your College Admissions Tests

The PSAT: What It Is and Why It Matters

The SAT: What You Need to Know

Registering for the SAT

The ACT: What You Need to Know

Registering for the ACT

Getting SAT and ACT Test Fees Waived

ACT or SAT? Which is Best for You?

Tips to Improve Your SAT and ACT Scores

The SAT Subject Tests: What You Need to Know

Registering for the SAT Subject Tests

What Are Your Test Prep Options?

What Is a Test Optional College?

Out of the Classroom

Extracurriculars Give You an Edge

How Colleges Admit Students

What Matters Most to Colleges

How Colleges Make Admission Decisions

How to Find Out What a College Wants

Your Plan to Get Into College

How Likely Are You to Get In?

Improve Your Admission Chances

Be a College Application Know-It-All

Get Started with Your College Applications

Do Your Best with Apps! Get Organized!

Tips for Using One Application to Apply to Many Schools

Get to Know the Common Application

Colleges That Accept the Common Application

Get to Know the Universal College Application

Should You Include Something Extra with Your Application?

Getting College Application Fees Waived

Applying to College as a Transfer Student

The Ins and Outs of Applying Early

Should You Apply Early Admission?

Is Early Decision Right for You?

When Applying Early Action Makes Sense

Create Outstanding Applications

Make Your College Applications Stand Out

Application Dos and Don'ts

How to Shine in Your College Application Essay

Ten Tips to Improve Your Essay

How to Write Your Common Application Essay

How to Write Your College Application Resume

Getting the Best Letters of Recommendation

Be an Outstanding Applicant

Get the Most from Your College Interviews

Ten Tips for Successful College Interviews

How to Demonstrate Your Interest to Colleges

Until College Admission Decisions Arrive

Stressed Out About Getting in? How to Cope!

How to Survive Before Decisions Arrive

Don't Catch Senioritis!

Your Final Answer

How College Visits Can Help You Choose a College

Worst Reasons to Choose (or Lose) a College

Accepted! How to Choose Your College

Waitlisted! Now What?

Rejected! How to Cope and What to Do

You've Decided on a College. What's Next?

Make the Most of a Spring Admission

Getting a Good Start As a Transfer Student

college buzz articles: campus life
Getting Involved

What Will College Life Be Like?

Go Clubbing on Campus

Is Greek Life for You?

Keeping It Together

Managing Your Time

Dealing with Stress

Avoiding Procrastination

There's No Place Like Home

The Great Roommate Match

On-Campus Housing Options

Furnishing Your Dorm Room

pay your way articles
How Much Does College Cost?

What's the Price Tag for a College Education?

Net Price: The Real Story

How Colleges Figure "Cost of Attendance"

How to Find Financially Friendly Colleges

What's Your Best College Fit, Financially Speaking?

Finding Financially Friendly Colleges

How to Get Merit Aid from Colleges

Get Started with Financial Aid

What Is Financial Aid?

Debunking Myths About Financial Aid

How Grants Help You Pay for College

Scholarship Basics

Scholarships and Merit Aid Offered by Colleges

How Work-Study Works

Federal Education Loans

Stafford Loans: The Largest Student Loan Program

How to Qualify for Financial Aid

How Colleges Calculate Your Financial Aid

Your Expected Family Contribution (EFC)

What You Need to Know About Financial Need

How Student and Parent Assets Affect Your Financial Aid

How Student and Parent Income Affect Your Financial Aid

Financial Aid for Independent Students

How to Get Financial Aid

How to Apply for Financial Aid

Why You Need to File the FAFSA

CSS PROFILE and Other Aid Applications

Common FAFSA Mistakes

Tips for Your Financial Aid Forms

Key Financial Aid Milestones

Getting the Best Financial Aid Awards

What's in a Financial Aid Award?

How Colleges Award Financial Aid

Improve Your Financial Aid Eligibility

Financial Aid Pitfalls to Avoid

How Outside Scholarships Affect Financial Aid Awards

How to Compare Your Financial Aid Awards

I'd Like More Financial Aid, Please

Ways to Pay for College

Common Ways to Pay for College

Don't Fall for These Six Myths About Paying for College

Borrowing Options for College

PLUS Loans for Parents

Investigating Private College Loans

Tax Breaks for College

How to Reduce College Costs

What Transfer Students Need to Know About Paying for College

Paying for College in Installments

The Best Laid College Financing Plans

Planning Ahead to Pay for College

Options for Saving for College

Education Savings Accounts

529 College Savings Plans

IRAs for College

Savings Bonds for College

Scholarship Essentials

Scholarship Basics

Where the Bucks Are: "Private" Scholarships

Scholarships Offered by Colleges

Don't Believe These Popular Scholarship Myths

Finding and Getting Scholarships

Finding Scholarships You Qualify For

It's Not Just About Your GPA...

Scholarship Application Tips

Watch Out for Scholarship Scams

Read the Fine Print

Renewable Scholarships Are Best

Using Scholarship Money: What's Allowed?

Scholarships with Strings Attached

Are You Eligible for Scholarships?

Unusual Scholarships

Scholarships Where Your Major Matters

I'm Eligible If I Live Where?

The Scoop on National Merit Scholarships

How to Qualify for Athletic Scholarships

How to Qualify for ROTC Scholarships

college buzz articles:
transfer students
If You're Thinking About Transferring

Should You Transfer to Another College?

What You Need to Know Before You Decide to Transfer

Applying to College As a Transfer Student

What Transfer Students Need to Know About Paying for College

Getting a Good Start As a Transfer Student

college buzz articles:
road to college
True stories about getting into college

Camilla - New York University - Class of 2021

Raveena - University of Pennsylvania - Class of 2021

Julian - Dartmouth College - Class of 2021

Kelly - Vanderbilt University - Class of 2021

Toran - Pomona College - Class of 2021

Hannah - University of Richmond - Class of 2021

Nicolas - Emory University - Class of 2021

Rebecca - U. of N. Carolina at Chapel Hill - Class of 2021

Vita - Wellesley College - Class of 2021

Ryan - Ohio University - Class of 2021

Aanand - Columbia University - Class of 2020

Hazel - Bates College - Class of 2020

John - Kenyon College - Class of 2020

Sydney - UC Berkeley - Class of 2020

Riley - Vanderbilt University - Class of 2020

Alexis - UC Merced - Class of 2020

Jessica - Point Loma Nazarene Univ. - Class of 2020

Ethan - Indiana U. Bloomington - Class of 2020

Brianna - Tufts University - Class of 2020

Katia - Northwestern University - Class of 2019

Anthony - UC Berkeley - Class of 2019

Paris - Texas Christian University - Class of 2019

Marisa - University of Alabama - Class of 2019

Akiro - Northeastern University - Class of 2019

Rachel - Mount Holyoke College - Class of 2019

Salman - Florida Gulf Coast University - Class of 2019

Emily - University of Notre Dame - Class of 2019

David - Brown University - Class of 2019

Nikita - Georgia Institute of Technology - Class of 2019

Marshall - Syracuse University - Class of 2019

Katherine - University of Washington - Class of 2019

Brian - Cal Poly San Luis Obispo - Class of 2018

Leo - University of Pennsylvania - Class of 2018

Soumya - Bryn Mawr College - Class of 2018

Jamie - Case Western Reserve University - Class of 2018

Neal - Xavier University - Class of 2018

Leah - Colorado State University - Class of 2018

Anna - University of Texas at Austin - Class of 2018

Robert - Coe College - Class of 2018

Taylor - Wake Forest University - Class of 2018

Michelle - Villanova University - Class of 2018

Amir - University of Mary Washington - Class of 2018

Dasmen - University of Virginia - Class of 2018

Kirsten - University of Arizona - Class of 2017

Josh - Dartmouth College - Class of 2017

college buzz articles:
road to college
True stories about getting into college

Christina - UC Davis - Class of 2017

Brandon - University of Delaware - Class of 2017

Jessica - SUNY Geneseo - Class of 2017

Timothy - Morehouse College - Class of 2017

Kim - DePaul University - Class of 2017

Josh - Tufts University - Class of 2017

Amanda - Colgate University - Class of 2017

Tina - U. of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign - Class of 2017

Adam - Augustana College (SD) - Class of 2017

Alejandra - Ohio State University - Class of 2016

Emma - College of William and Mary - Class of 2016

Jess - Binghamton U. / Cornell University - Class of 2016

Leyth - Pomona College - Class of 2016

Michael - Northeastern University - Class of 2016

Molly - Vassar College - Class of 2016

Shaquilla - Harvard College - Class of 2016

Tlalli - Yale University - Class of 2016

Kathleen - UC Berkeley - Class of 2016

David - Vanderbilt University - Class of 2016

Brenna - Iowa State University - Class of 2015

Candace - U. of N. Carolina at Chapel Hill - Class of 2015

Andrew - Penn State University Park - Class of 2015

Nick - Georgetown University - Class of 2015

Stephen - University of Pennsylvania - Class of 2015

Stephanie - Stanford University - Class of 2015

Jeremy - Boston University - Class of 2015

Amy - Hillsdale College - Class of 2015

Maggie - UCLA - Class of 2015

Joseph - University of Vermont - Class of 2015

Alexander - U. of Colorado Boulder - Class of 2014

Alexandra - Indiana U. Bloomington - Class of 2014

Gabrielle - Furman University - Class of 2014

Linda - Grinnell College - Class of 2014

Mario - Cal Poly Pomona - Class of 2014

Matt - Carleton College - Class of 2014

Michael - University of Maryland - Class of 2014

Monica - Hiram College - Class of 2014

Obianuju - The College of New Jersey - Class of 2014

Philip - American University - Class of 2014

Leslie - Wesleyan University - Class of 2014

Jessica - Wellesley College - Class of 2013

Melanie - Colby College - Class of 2013

Claire - Johns Hopkins University - Class of 2013

Justin - University of Georgia - Class of 2013

Uddit - U.S. Air Force Academy - Class of 2013

Briton - Hobart College - Class of 2013

Mark - Union College - Class of 2013

college buzz articles:
road to college
True stories about getting into college

Jason - Univ. of Michigan - Class of 2013

Anthony - University of Pittsburgh - Class of 2013

Joelle - Univ. of Wisconsin-Madison - Class of 2013

Kira - Swarthmore College - Class of 2013

John - Pomona College - Class of 2013

Julia - University of Florida - Class of 2013

Stacy - Cal Poly San Luis Obispo - Class of 2013

Daniel - Yale University - Class of 2013

Eric - UC San Diego - Class of 2013

David - University of Chicago - Class of 2013

Umbar - Cornell University - Class of 2013

James - Villanova University - Class of 2012

Sundiata - Univ. of Mass. Amherst - Class of 2012

Roy - Calif. Maritime Acad. / UC Irvine - Class of 2012

Marquis - Princeton University - Class of 2012

Kirsten - Chapman / UC Davis - Class of 2012

Ashley - Mount Holyoke College - Class of 2012

Pauline - Seattle University - Class of 2012

Andrew - Tulane University - Class of 2011

Chenoa - Tufts University - Class of 2011

Damon - New York University - Class of 2011

Kristin - MIT - Class of 2011

Philip - Amherst College - Class of 2011

Susan - University of Delaware - Class of 2011

Trisha - Westmont College - Class of 2011

Kirsten - Chapman / UC Davis - Class of 2012

Catlin - Harvard College - Class of 2010

Sam - University of Washington - Class of 2010

Megan - Denison University - Class of 2010

Danielle - UCLA - Class of 2010

Catherine - Reed College - Class of 2010

Jeffrey - Washington and Lee Univ. - Class of 2010

Renata - Brown University - Class of 2010

Matthew - Syracuse University - Class of 2010

Daniela - Bates College - Class of 2010

Stephanie - University of Illinois - Class of 2010

Boris - Dartmouth College - Class of 2009

Dhrupad - Univ. of Southern California - Class of 2009

Alice - Columbia University - Class of 2009

Taylor - Cal Poly Pomona - Class of 2009

Michael - Boston University - Class of 2009

Umar - University of Michigan - Class of 2009

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For Students Age 18 and Older

Have you received a Personal Invitation to apply for a Student Credit card?

Learn how to qualify for a Personal Invitation to apply for a Student Credit Card

1st Financial Bank believes students who pick colleges wisely will also want to learn how to use credit cards wisely.

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Admissions TrackerSee who got in where, who's applying & how you compare!
Financial Aid TrackerSee who's getting financial aid, how much & how you stack up.
Scholarship FinderFind money for college!
EFC CalculatorCalculate your Expected Family Contribution.
College Net Price CalculatorSee your true out-of-pocket cost to attend any college.
Compare Financial Aid AwardsFind out which college is offering you the best deal.
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