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i am very interested in attending your college. but i have no idea how i am going to pay for it.
If you are a resident of California and you fill out the FAFSA, you are eligible for the CAL Grant and the Pell Grant if you are a low-income student. Those are pretty good, but you will probably still have to take out some loans. I recommend the Federal Stafford loan (subsidized), but even the unsubsidized is good because it is still low-interest compared to private loan companies. Avoid taking out private loans from companies like Sallie Mae--they have high interest rates and they expect payments whether you make money after college or not. Federal loans are good because if you are unemployed or making only low income after you graduate, you can defer your payments. Also, Sonoma State offers many scholarships. The application is due in January. There are also outside scholarships that you can find on fastweb.com and zinch.com. If you are employed, ask your employer if there are scholarships related to your field. As a movie theater worker, I was able to apply (and received) a scholarship of $7500, which was a huge deal, especially when the federal SMART grant got cancelled. If you are paying for school yourself, you have to be on the lookout for funding opportunities all the time. The government helps out a lot, but you also have to take a lot of initiative to get scholarships, which can be tedious and hard work. It's very much worth it though. And even if you don't get the scholarships you apply for, Sonoma State has many student work opportunities, so you can work and pay for whatever you need. (Although just a heads up, you can only work an average of 20 hours per week if employed by the school.)
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