The Single Moms Guide For Going Back To School

If you are a single mom looking to go back to school, first of all, congratulations! You are about to embark on an adventure that will surely benefit you and your kids in the future. As you know, nothing worth working for in life is easy, but that doesn’t mean it won’t be worth it. Here are some steps for you to take as you begin this incredible opportunity.

Decide What You Want To Do.

By now, you have been thinking about what career field you may be interested in. What is your passion? What are your talents? What do you truly enjoy doing? Perhaps you love helping people and would like to become a nurse. Maybe you love working with numbers and accounting appeals to you. Maybe you want to help protect people and criminal justice is what you want to pursue. All of these a great career choices, and there are so many more. Spend some time in self-reflection and ask yourself what you want to do for the rest of your life. Talk with close family members and friends about it too. Many times talking with others about a big decision like this one helps give you clarity.

Find A School With Your Program and Apply!

After you have decided what you would like to do, it’s time to find a school that offers your program. This will all depend on your career choice. It could be a local community college, an online college, a technical school, or a bigger university. Determine also, what you need to do to apply to the program. Other than the obvious application you will need to fill out, are there tests you need to take? Essays you need to write? Recommendations you need to ask for? Generally you will need to request transcripts to be sent as well. All this paperwork is usually not fun, but it is essential to get it in as soon as you can. You should also find out if you’re eligible for a PELL grant.

After you finish the paperwork, it is time to wait. Hopefully it won’t be too long before you hear if you have been accepted into your program. If you don’t hear within a few weeks, you can always call the school and ask about the “status of your application.” They should be helpful and let you know what to expect.

The Registration Process

After you have been accepted into your program, it is time to register for classes. You will need to decide your school schedule based on your life’s schedule. Will you be taking classes online? Who will watch your children while you are in class? Do you work another job? Keep all this in mind as you register for classes. Most classes are offered online or in the evenings if you need these options. You should also consult your academic advisor to talk about your goals. This individual will help you choose classes and work around your schedule. They will be one of your greatest allies during this journey so never be afraid to contact him or her to talk.

Paying For School

Of course, you will need to pay for your schooling, but there are options available for you since you are a single mother. Many single moms are offered financial aid including grants. Grants are funds given to you to pay for school that you will not need to pay back. You will need to do some research to see how to apply for grants or other financial aid. You will need to fill out the FASFA form (The Free Application for Federal Students Aid). This form will open up the doors to see what type of financial aid you will be able to receive. Don’t let the prospect of paying for your schooling scare you. Just do what you can to see what you will qualify for.

Manage Your Time and Work Hard

After you have figured out all the details, it’s time to delve in! You will be reading, studying and working hard in your classes so make sure you manage your time wisely. If you have family or friends offer to help you by watching your kids, take them up on their offers. You need plenty of time to concentrate on your studies so never hesitate to ask for help if you need it. This will be a busy time in your life, but in the grand scheme of time, you will be glad that you chose to return to school. Your hard work will pay off, just don’t give up!

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5 College Grants Single Moms Overlook

Going to college used to be limited to only those who could afford it, but times have changed so much. Single moms can now have the opportunity to go to college through something called a ‘grant.’ Keep in mind that grants do not have to be paid back. There are hundreds of grants available to single moms, but many single moms go after the same grants and overlook obvious grants that could help pay for their education.  Let’s take a look at five of those grants:

  1. Finding Local Grants

    There are many federal grants out there that will help a single mother pay for college, but what about local grants. You don’t have to depend on the government to pay for your entire college. Instead, look at what the state you live in can provide and also what local grants are available. For example: if you are a pregnant mom that wants to attend college at a local university, you may be eligible for a grant.

    The way to find out if you’re eligible for these types of grants is to ask for a list from the local college. The only way you will be able to find most of these grants is by calling the college or university and asking yourself.

  2. Thinking Outside of the Box with the Jeanette Rankin Scholarship

    When a person thinks of a single mom, they often think of someone in their early twenties or later teens. However, there are some single moms out there who are in their thirties and older. Because a lot of people forget that single mothers vary in ages, finding a grant that caters to older single moms can be difficult.

    Take the Jeanette Rankin scholarship for example. This scholarship is available to just women and isn’t necessarily just catered to single moms. When looking for grants or scholarships, you have to be willing to look at different criteria that you will qualify. The Jeanette Rankin scholarship is catered to women and empowering them through education. You have to be at least 35, which makes this scholarship especially unique.

  3. Try Out the Work Study Program

    Work study grants used to be more popular than what they are now. It’s not out of the ordinary to think of solutions like this to help pay for your college. As a single mom, why not apply for a work study program. There are federal work study programs that will allow you to pay for your education. While this may not be your first option, it is a way to pay for school and get real world experience.

  4. Look into Your Field of Study

    Finding broad single mother grants can be hard because there are so many single mothers applying for those grants. However, things get a little easier when you look into grants that are supported by the type of work you are diving into. If you are a single mom diving into the nursing scene, then there are several local grants you could apply for. Make sure you also check in with local hospitals. Nurses are in high demand, so you never know what grants or scholarships might be available in your area. You can also see our guide about the top paying jobs for single moms here

  5. Hardship Grants May be an Option

    Although no one likes to admit that they have fallen on hard times, there may be a grant option for single moms who are having a hard time. These grants are known as “hardship grants.” Some of these grants are available from the federal government and some are local. A grant may come in the form of food vouchers, gas vouchers, or even childcare vouchers.

    Anything it takes to help you get through school can be considered a “grant.” If you’re having a hard time getting through school or making ends meet while you are in school, make sure you look at all of your options.

  6. Finding a grant as a single mom is a lot easier these days than ever before. But there are also a lot more single mothers applying for these grants and scholarships and that means the money may run out faster. Don’t be afraid to look at the local options and private available to single mothers who want to go to college.

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Our Top 10 Favorite Posts of All Time

It’s been a long 2 years and the staff here at U.S Emergency Cash Assistance is taking a short break to find new content to write about. We’re also talking about adding a forum for single moms to interact with one another. In the meantime, we’ve created a list of 10 of the most popular articles on our site. The articles are rated according to the number of comments.

Without further ado, here ya go.

  1. How To Get A Government Grant
  2. Scholarships For Single Mothers
  3. Financial Assistance For Single Mothers
  4. Grants For Single Mothers
  5. Education Programs For Single Mothers
  6. Home Loans For Single Mothers
  7. Loans For Single Moms With Bad Credit
  8. Check Your Credit Score For Free
  9. The Scholarship Resource Section
  10. The Top Ten Ways Single Moms Can Make Money

What do you think? Did we leave one out? What was your favorite article over the past two years? Drop us a comment in the section below or share on Facebook and tweet on Twitter!

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