Most students spend a ton of time finding scholarships to use in college, but then they don’t know how to put those awards to good use. If you have recently been awarded money to pay for your schooling, you may be a little confused as to what it can pay for. Should you use it for food? For books? For rent? For tuition? Where is all of this money supposed to go? Those are the kinds of questions that we are answering in this article, just to give you an idea of how to use money while you’re in college. Read on to find out how to apply your scholarship funding to your life as a college student.
Tuition and Fees
When your scholarships start to come in, they will get deposited into a large account that mixes them all together. The school is going to take out the money for your tuition and fees first because it wants to get paid. This all happens before you start having control of your money, unless you receive cash scholarships directly in the mail. That rarely happens, so just assume that your tuition and fees are automatically going to come out of your scholarships. Then you will hopefully have some money left over to use on other expenses.
Some scholarships can be applied to room and board, but the “room” is conditional. For the most part, you will need to live on campus to use this money for your rent. The school will take your rent directly out of your scholarship money, just like it would with tuition and fees. You may have a few awards that you can use for rent in an actual apartment, but don’t expect that to be the case for every scholarship. You will have to read information about your specific financial aid opportunities to learn more.
You should be able to use scholarship money to pay for your books, computer, binders, pencils, paper, and other supplies for school. The catch is that you have to buy your supplies on campus to do this. Some colleges will allow you to get money back from school to use on your own, but most of them will hold your money in a special account. If you are attending that kind of university, you will need to go to the student union to get your school supplies.
If you have excess money in scholarships for a certain semester, you may get a check back from your school to devote to living expenses. You can use this for food, insurance, clothing, or whatever else you want. Ideally, you need to use this money for purchases related to your education. If you don’t want to do that though, you will have the freedom to use your money however you want to. Just remember what your scholarships are designed for, and try to respect their purpose in the end. If you can do that, you should have no problem getting the most out of your scholarships in the future.