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Affording College in a Down Economy

Affording College in a Down Economy

(NewsUSA)- Ups and downs on Wall Street, the pinch of the current credit crisis and an uncertain economy make students and parents worry about college tuition payments.
Tightened credit lines could make borrowing money for college an uphill battle for many American families. But most families can still find ways to send their high-school graduates to school. "You can still make college a reality, even in the middle of a credit crisis," says Martha Holler, spokesperson for Sallie Mae (, the nation's leading saving- and paying-for-college company. "Loans remain readily available to help you pay for college."
Despite the crazy credit crunch, students and parents can still find federal student loans regardless of credit score, income, assets or collateral. Federal law fixes student loans at a competitive interest rate, so families won't pay higher rates in a troubled economy.
Although other consumer credit is drying up, students and parents can still get federal student loans through Sallie Mae. The company is ready to make federal student loans to every student who needs one at every school across the country.
Holler encourages students to educate themselves on how to get college money. She offers the following tips to students and parents looking to pay for higher education:
- Find free money. Apply for financial aid to access free money. Tap grants and scholarships by filing the Free Application For Federal Student Aid, also called the FAFSA.
- Fully explore federal student loans. Federal loans are the largest source of student loans and offer more favorable terms than private loans, so get as many federal loans as possible before resorting to private loans.
- If scholarships, grants and federal loans do not fully cover the cost, fill any gaps with private loans.
Holler stresses that it's important to consider the full cost of college and develop a comprehensive plan to pay for tuition as well as other college-related expenses. College is within students' financial reach, and proper planning can ensure they do not pay more for college than needed. Visit and start your plan today.

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