Your Earn to Learn FL Pathway to College Success 

“My near peer coach, Ashley Williams, has been the absolute best. She has provided me with resources to help while I am still in high school and for college as well. Whether it is helping out with applications or providing assistance for test prep, she is always there and I appreciate that so much.” – Wharton High School Graduate and Earn to Learn FL Scholar

The Earn to Learn FL Near Peer Coach for Postsecondary Success team is with you every step of the way! We know you have questions and we have answers for you.

Why this matters: Getting answers to your questions will help you avoid costly mistakes and keep you on track to graduate from college on time, career ready, and free of student debt.

Remember, it’s normal to have questions and encounter speed bumps, but that’s why we made this blog– to help you get connected to the campus resources that can make navigating those speed bumps easier. Please don’t hesitate to reach out if you need any help figuring out where to turn! No question is too big or too small!

Here are some questions so that we can help you get the best start:

  • Have you prepared a budget for college expenses?
  • Do you have transportation to college?
  • Do you know what to pack if you are living on campus?
  • Do you have a meal plan set up?
  • Are you registered for classes?
  • Did you get all of the classes needed for the next semester?
  • Have you received your financial aid package information?
  • Do you know the payment deadline before your classes get dropped?

Questions? Contact your Earn to Learn FL Near Peer Success Coach for assistance to answer any of the questions above or ask other questions.

Stay informed: Earn to Learn FL Matched Savings for Education Scholars, Near Peer Success Coaches, and alumni, stay connected to our blog at

Earn to Learn FL is here to help you be successful on your pathway to complete your education on time, career ready, and free of student debt.

Alternatives to Student Loans

Before borrowing money to pay for school, exhaust all alternative funding sources available. When developing a college funding strategy that includes scholarships, grants, and more traditional forms of student aid, consider the following options to cover educational costs.

Tuition Installment Plans– An installment plan allows a parent or student to break up the tuition balance by paying the amount due over a specific period. The short-term payment plan allows families who are unable to make one lump sum payment cover the cost of their educational fees prior to the end of the semester or academic year. Paying the full balance in increments also allows students to maintain their course load and keep their student account current. Most academic institutions will charge a nominal fee (less than $25) to enroll in a tuition payment plan.

Crowdfunding– Crowdfunding is simply a method of raising small amounts of money to fund a project or venture. This requires the student to appeal to a network of individuals to amass capital. Students can reach out to friends, extended family and their supporters by fundraising online on various crowdfunding platforms (Plumfund, etc.).  Students may seek donations from their supporters to cover the cost of tuition, books, housing, and other college-related expenses.

Fellowships – This is a monetary award given to a student for advanced studies in a specific academic discipline. These merit-based awards are often available to students pursuing graduate or postgraduate coursework. Students may seek fellowship opportunities from sponsoring organizations (academic institutions, non-profits, foundations, etc.). Note that fellowships often require service commitments that may last for a predetermined period (months, years, etc.).

Assistantships– Students seeking a graduate degree can receive a paid academic appointment that requires teaching or conducting research. Financial support is provided to students who engage in various tasks that support the functions of academic units within the educational setting.

Tuition Reimbursement/Tuition Assistance Plans – A tuition assistance program is an employee benefit through which an employer pays for an established amount of continuing education credits or college coursework to be applied toward a degree or certification. Many big box retailers, national banks, and healthcare systems offer tuition reimbursement for hourly and entry level positions.  However, organizations large and small with a commitment to increased educational attainment often offer their employees tuition assistance benefits. Organizations are beginning to increase their educational benefits as they see the positive impact they can have on their business. Therefore, choose your employer wisely.

Volunteering with AmeriCorps–  Upon completion of a term of service, students participating in AmeriCorps programs can earn education awards worth up to the maximum Federal Pell Grant for a year of full-time service. Individuals age 55 or older can earn a $1,000 education award through the AmeriCorps Silver Scholars program and transfer it to a child, grandchild or foster child. Learn more about AmeriCorps here: To apply for an AmeriCorps position with Earn to Learn FL visit: .

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