9 Unusual Ways to Pay for CollegeCollege is expensive - and it gets more so every year. The average in-state price for tuition, fees, room and board at a four-year public institution in 2014-15 was up 3% from the previous year to $18,943, according to the College Board. The average price for a four-year private nonprofit school rose nearly 4% to $42,419.
4. Teach dance.
While her classmates at William & Mary in Virginia earned minimum wage working at restaurants and retail stores during college, Catherine Alford pocketed $15 an hour teaching ballet to three-year-olds. "I used to wear my ballet clothes under my college clothes, rush to the studio between classes and teach the little ones," she says. She saved her earnings to travel abroad after her junior year to study writing at the University of Cambridge in England.
5. Work as a camp counselor.
When Eric Rosenberg became a counselor-in-training at a Boy Scout camp near Denver, he didn't realize it would be his ticket to a full ride at the University of Colorado. After he learned about the Boys Scouts of America Denver Area Council's Madden Merit Scholarship Award, he decided to stick with camp counseling throughout college to receive the funding, which was matched with funds from the university and Wells Fargo. The $15,000 he received each year covered his tuition, room and board until he graduated in 2007. Read about eight other sources of scholarships.
6. Conduct interviews.
While attending UCLA, Jackie Lam spent several weeks interviewing people for a book,Close Calls with the Cops, after responding to a listing on Craigslist.org. Lams says she approached people on the street, sought stories through online chatrooms and posted her own ads on Craigslist. She was paid $10 per story and earned a total of $200 - not a lot but enough to cover some books and living expenses. She also earned cash by participating in clinical studies at a lab on the UCLA campus, and recording books on tape for the school's office of disabilities.
7. Clean toilets.
Former Kiplinger writer Erin Burt worked her way through Brigham Young University in Utah with an assortment of campus jobs, including one with the custodial crew for the basketball arena and football stadium. She made about $6 an hour in 1997-98. Believe it or not, it was a lot of fun, she says, because "each shift was a bunch of college kids talking, laughing, listening to music - we just happened to be cleaning toilets, washing windows and mopping at the same time." In addition to earning money to pay for school, she met her husband on the job.
8. Model for aspiring artists.
To get a job on campus at Ricks College (now Brigham Young University-Idaho), Tynley Bean and her classmates had to stand for hours in a job line at the beginning of each term. Given the choice of janitor and art model, Bean chose the latter her freshman year because it sounded easier and had better hours. For $5 an hour, she would sit or lie completely still in a swimsuit. The experience prompted her to become an art major, and she was able to sell her own art while in school to professors, students and even the university's collection.
9. Let Uncle Sam foot the bill.
Send us other ways to earn for young people to earn money as they pursue their goals.