Going to college is a big life decision, whether you are choosing to move away to study at your dream college, or saving money by studying at home with an online BSN degree. Committing to a college degree in nursing means that for the next four years or so of your life, you’ll need to make sure that you’re ready to take on the amount of planning, work, and dedication that it takes to become a nurse.
Before Starting Nursing Degree
For many students, this also means that they must get their finances in order before starting their college program. Embarking on a nursing degree program with financial issues can lead to further problems down the line, which could stand in the way of you and your success. We’ve listed some of the best ways to get your finances in order before you start.
1. Pay off Debts
Since moving from an RN to BSN usually means living on a reduced income for a while so that you can dedicate as much of your free time as possible to studying and revising, it’s a good idea to try and pay off as many of your debts as possible before you embark on your online nursing degree. If you are an older student who has decided to return to education later in life, then it’s likely that this will be something you are more worried about than students who attend university straight out of high school. Before your program commences, try and get your level of debt down to a minimum, giving you less to worry about whilst you are studying and gaining work experience.
2. Set a Budget
Once you have begun studying for your nursing degree, it’s likely that you’ll find yourself living on a much tighter budget than usual. Even if you have chosen to save some money by studying online, you might have to consider working fewer hours than you are used to, so that you have the free time to dedicate to learning. Bear in mind that whilst studying to become a nurse, you may also be required to take part in a certain amount of unpaid work experience as part of your program. Because of this, it’s a good idea to work out exactly how much you’ll be earning per month so that you can draw up a budget and determine how much you can comfortably spend without added worry about money.
3. Consider Financial Aid
In some cases, nursing students can apply for financial aid with their college degree program. If you or your family is on a low income or you are a single parent, for example, then you may be eligible to get some help with funding your college degree expenses. Before starting your college degree program, it’s advisable to consider your options for financial aid as early as possible – bear in mind that certain scholarship programs, for example, will only take on a set number of students per year and therefore those who apply earlier will be in with a better chance of gaining funding.
Did these tips help? We’d love to hear from you in the comments.
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