Tuition fees are rising, parents are not contributing and students are taking matters into their own hands to come up with money to pay for schooling. It seems like the days of working hard and saving has disappeared, and a new generation of making money is emerging. These ten ways to pay tuition are desperate and some are just downright strange.
1. Solicit Strangers
Soliciting strangers to pay your tuition sounds downright desperate but it is surprisingly effective. Websites such as GoFundMe allow users to sign up for free and start collecting money. Students have turned to these crowd-funding websites to ask for people to pay their tuition. While GoFundMe is used by anyone looking for donations, there are education-specific sites out there. Students have had high success in raising thousands of dollars in order to pay for schooling. If you don’t mind begging strangers for money, this seems to be the way to go.
2. Collect Rebates
An Auburn University PhD student covered his tuition costs entirely with rebates a few years ago. Jonathan Hood shops exclusively online and purchases products with rebates offered. He then turns around and sells the product, and collects the rebate via prepaid debit card or check. This type of savings takes dedication for months and possibly years to collect enough, but for students who are super savers, this sure is a creative way to pay tuition.
3. Become a Lab Rat
Participating in medical research is becoming a popular way for students to fund high school bills. World class research hospitals are always looking for young people to participate in medical studies and they will pay significant amounts depending on the type of study. Studies can range from having you watch images and measuring your brain levels to filling out simple surveys to staying overnight in a hospital. Obviously, the more intense studies pay better and if you don’t mind someone poking and prodding you, it’s one way students can make some quick cash.
4. Take to the Streets
Students are taking to the streets to pay high tuition bills as street performers, including dancers, jugglers, guitar players, and fictional characters. Students that have some sort of artistic talent are making up signs, opening up their guitar cases for donations, and performing for money. Whether you are good enough to make the money you need for tuition, however, that is to be determined.
5. Eating Competitions
Students are literally eating their way through college and university, and managing to pay their tuition at the same time. If you have a seemingly endless stomach and don’t mind putting any type of food in it, this may be your calling. Eating competitions pay surprisingly well and there is no shortage of them. As an added bonus, plan on saving money on food as once you have eaten twelve bowls of spaghetti in thirty minutes, you probably won’t need to eat again.
6. Sell Your Body Parts
True desperation comes in the form of selling your actual body parts to pay tuition, but more and more students are slipping towards this dangerous tactic. Although it is illegal to sell any actual organs, there are a lot of body parts you are technically allowed to make money off. Egg donation and sperm are two moneymakers, as well as bone marrow and plasma. Even your hair can make you money.
7. Live in Your Van
Living in your van in order to pay your tuition takes dedication, but over the past few years we have seen multiple students take this drastic measure. Instead of spending their hard-earned cash on housing fees and meal plans, these students are choosing to live entirely out of their van, car, truck, etc. One student even got caught living in the school library. While this doesn’t earn you any money (unless you decided to write a bestseller about it), it does, however, allow you to use all your money towards tuition rather than student housing.
8. Auction Off Your Virginity
This list wouldn’t be complete without mentioning the downright desperate idea of trying to auction off your virginity in order to pay your tuition. A number of females have tried this tactic, posting an online auction in which men bid on who gets to have sexual intercourse with her. It seems that there are many men out there that are willing to pay big bucks for this. It’s undetermined if any students have actually followed through with this but with all the other strange ways to pay tuition, we suggest skipping this one.
9. Steal Your Tuition
Desperate times call for desperate measures – at least that is what the guilty students have said when they have been busted for stealing. Stories of stealing from churches, armed robbery, and theft in order to pay tuition have all circulated the news in the past few years. While you may gain enough money to pay your tuition, chances are you won’t have anywhere to spend it once you are stuck behind bars for the next twenty years.
10. Sue Your Parents
Students suing their parents for child support, living expenses, and tuition costs have been tried but never successful to our knowledge. A New Jersey teen sparked outrage last year when she filed a lawsuit against her parents demanding they pay for her schooling. The case was eventually dropped and this lucky cheerleader landed a scholarship that covered her costs. We have to wonder though: is this just the first of many lawsuits to come as children attend university at a younger age?
Looking at the above ten ways to pay tuition, it might be a wakeup call for parents of the younger generation. Perhaps parents should be focusing on teaching their children the benefits of saving for their education so when the time comes to pay tuition, they aren’t illegally trying to sell their kidneys to cover the costs.