The cost for college education continues to rise at a blistering pace. Although tuition and fees can vary widely amongst colleges and universities, the cost for tuition and fees for the 2013-2014 school year was $30,094 at private colleges. For in state schools it was $8,893 and $22,203 for out of state students at public schools. That doesn’t include housing and meals which ran another $10,000 on average and books and school supplies that were about $1,200. Considering these factors, is the only answer to send your child to an in state school? Not necessarily. Here are some ideas on how to get your child in state tuition to an out of state school.
By the way, the answer we aren’t searching for is to change your children’s address to a relative that lives in the state where you want your child to go to school. What the real smart money moves are about, is gaining a better understanding of the programs that are available to you based upon the state you live in and capitalizing on those in order to minimize your out of pocket costs for college.
Based upon where you live in the United States, there are “academic common markets”. These are essentially states that have banded together to offer in-state tuition rates to students within their common market. Outside of the Southeast United States, there is the New England Board of Higher Education, Midwestern Higher Education Compact, and the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education.
We have the Southern Regional Board Academic Common Market which amazingly enough includes Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, and West Virginia. (www.sreb.org)
Just what is the Academic Common Market?
- The Academic Common Market is a tuition-savings program for college students in the 16 SREB member states who want to pursue degrees that are not offered by their in-state institutions. Students can enroll in out-of-state institutions that offer their degree program and pay the institution’s in-state tuition rates. Hundreds of undergraduate and graduate programs are available for residents of SREB states. You can easily search programs available for your home state by clicking Search for Programs.
- The ACM program is not competitive or merit-based, but applicants must meet state residency and college program requirements.
- The ACM eliminates unnecessary duplication of academic programs among participating states, recognizing that it is impractical for any institution or single state to develop or maintain degree programs in every field of knowledge.
- It supports existing degree programs that have the capacity to serve additional students.
- It provides access across state lines for programs not available in a student’s home state.
- First-professional degree programs, such as law, medicine, dentistry, pharmacy and optometry, are not offered in the ACM and cannot be requested.
- Some institutions and states may impose additional acceptance requirements, such as full-time enrollment status or GPA requirements. (source: sreb.com)
I was surprised to see how many different types of degrees were available through some pretty impressive colleges listed on this website. As college costs continue to rise, it’s time to look into every nook and cranny to see how you can get more money for your kids. Don’t wait until the last minute and take advantage of reviewing this list before you take your son or daughter on the round of college school visits. Using this strategy will get you straight A’s on saving money for college tuition.