• Ways for Seniors to Save on School

  • by Austin Schachinger

Many Americans today are waiting patiently for their retirement to arrive so they can spend all day on the golf course, volunteering, relaxing, and participating in activities that they didn’t have the time for during their working years.  But, it is becoming more and more common for today’s seniors to go back to a place where they spent the majority of their life in their early years.  School!  Perhaps they didn’t go to college in the past or didn’t pick the right major the first time. Or maybe they simply find a certain class interesting and want to learn more. No matter the reason, seniors are hitting the books, and many are doing it without the debt that comes with student loans.  Here’s some amenities colleges are offering today for seniors to come back to school at little to no cost.

Scholarships

No matter your age, when it comes to college, scholarships are the first money savers everyone looks for.  Most have some specific requirements that must be met, age and income for example, and are geared toward today’s undergraduate students.  Still, others are less strict about requirements and almost anyone is eligible, regardless of age. You may just have to really read the fine print to find these. On the other hand, there are also some scholarships designed with seniors in mind.  For example, Alabama has a program called Senior Adults Scholarship Program that allows senior citizens who are 60 and older and who are admitted to public two-year colleges in Alabama to go to school with tuition completely paid for.

Auditing Courses

Audit courses are classes you can attend but skip doing any homework and exams.  This is what every college student dreams of as they spend all night staring at their books and computer screens.  But college students are preparing themselves for the real world while senior citizens already went through that part in their lives.  That’s why attending auditing classes is common among seniors. They want to go back to school just for fun and to gain more knowledge. These are students who don’t care about the grade or the degree.

Community College

When it comes to applying for college, everyone knows that attending a community college will be far less costly than going to a large university or expensive liberal arts college.  Although this option is not free for seniors, it won’t leave a huge hole in your wallet like these other schools will.  Additionally, according to a recent survey held by the American Association of Community Colleges, it turns out that 84 percent of community colleges offer courses specifically for their population of students aged 50 and older.