University of Florida
The alligator could be the favorite animal of a large number of people who live in Florida. That’s because the gator is the mascot of the University of Florida, a large, land-grant institution located in beautiful Gainesville, Florida.
The school’s website states that the UF is one of the five largest universities in the entire nation. That’s no surprise, as the school offers more than 100 undergraduate degree programs, and more than 200 graduate degree programs. There’s a lot to study, and the students are a diverse lot. Women outnumber men at the UF, and minority enrollment stands at close to 15,000.
These factors just might push you to enroll at the UF. And if you do, there are all sorts of simple steps you can take to control your costs, so your education won’t come with a price tag you can’t pay.
Living in Gainesville
The University of Florida is a major player in Gainesville, and much of the employment that’s available in the area comes from the school. Teachers, administrators, coaches, janitors, and more are required to keep the school running smoothly, and they all compete for the salaries and perks these jobs can bring. As a result, Gainesville isn’t the least expensive place in the world to live. In fact, the website AreaVibes.com suggests that Gainesville is nearly as expensive as the national average, in terms of basic cost-of-living numbers.
Each job and each salary allows people to buy homes in the area, and when they buy those homes, they might fix those homes up and make them more expensive. They might cause wear on roads and utilize more arts programs, which can cause an increase in taxes. They might be willing to spend a little more for goods and services, which can make prices rise for everyone.
Some of those changes come with benefits for students. For example, Gainesville has an admirable arts and culture scene, according to Visit Gainesville, as the city is simply stuffed with museums and historical societies that make for fun and educational outings. Living in Gainesville could put you in touch with art you’ve just never been exposed to before, and that could make your entire college experience just a little more pleasant.
Finding a reasonably priced place to live could be a challenge in this environment, and the way the university is set up might not help you very much.
There is another way. The Regional Transit System offers discounted bus passes to students who can display a valid student ID card. That pass lasts for a semester, and students who take advantage may see huge benefits. You won’t have to pay to park your car, and you won’t have to pick up the full price for gas. You won’t even have to pay for car maintenance and repairs. You’ll just need to pick up that bus pass. For some students, this is a wonderful deal.
Aside from housing and transportation, University of Florida students also need to find a way to pay for books. Almost every single class out there requires some kind of written text, and sometimes, professors ask their students to purchase workbooks and supplemental texts, too. All of these documents could be vital for students who want to master a specific subject, but each book can come with a hefty price tag.
The official University of Florida bookstore provides students with used books that are marked up to 25 percent off, according to the school’s website. Students who browse exclusively for used books may find that they save a great deal on the data they need to do well in class, and when that class is over, they can sell that book back and get about half of the purchase price in return.
Students who would rather not buy books outright can rent them instead. The eFollet.com program allows University of Florida students to sign up and check out books for classes. At the end of the course, students can return those books for a small fee, or they can choose to buy the book for further study.
If you’re in dire financial straits, you might be eligible to defer your bookstore payments. This program allows students in need to make the purchases they need before classes begin, and the cost of those books will be covered when federal aid is disbursed, according to the bookstore’s website. This could be an excellent program for students in need of help in paying for books and supplies.
University of Florida Tuition
The largest expense you face as a student at the University of Florida comes through your tuition. Every student who wants to take courses will need to pay the fees for those courses. Otherwise, all of the work you’ll do in class just won’t count. In some cases, you won’t even be able to walk through the doors of the classroom unless you pay those tuition fees.
The University of Florida works hard to keep those fees low by offering some innovative programs. For example, the Jacksonville Business Journal suggests that the university offers an online-only MBA program that comes in with a price tag of less than $1,200. That’s a good deal, and there are other programs like this that could help students to defer at least some of the costs of going to school at the University of Florida.
Many students who choose UF seem capable of making good decisions about their finances, as many of them leave the school without any debt at all. The university’s website suggests that about two-thirds of graduates of the university leave with no student loan debt. Those who do have a debt of about $21,000, which is less than the national average.
Those low figures could be due, in part, to the excellence of the students who choose the University of Florida. The school boasts of a student body with high test scores and high GPAs, and those are the sorts of attributes that make scholarship administrators sit up and take notice. If these students are truly excellent, they may have people willing to work with them and help them to pay for school. It could happen to you, too.
That FAFSA form works like a pre-screening device. Officials look over the numbers and work to match students with the programs they are eligible for. Then, you’ll be provided with a letter that details how much aid you can get to cover your costs at the University of Florida. If you accept those programs, you’ll sign a note and take a course on debt. The funds will be ready for you to use.