Financial Aid Woes

By Antony Juaregui 

I was always taught that financial aid was wrong by my parents.  When applying to colleges I came across the option to apply for financial aid or not.  I still remember my first taught being not to.  I remembered learning from my parents that “nothing is free.  Especially if it is from the government.”  I wasn’t going to just decide blindly to reject applying for financial aid.  I got a second opinion.

I visit the GEAR UP center- a UCLA sponsored college bound program- I remember I made them cry.  I asked so many questions that afterwards they were exhausted.  I ask “Why apply for financial aid?”  There response satisfied me.  They explained that my parents are tax payers and so am I because I work and so it isn’t really free; I’m just getting money back for college.  I decided to apply for financial aid.  I applied for FAFSA and some scholarships.

Time passed and I got my results.  I didn’t get financial aid.  It was embarrassing.  I know a lot of people who only go to college because they got financial aid and they do not believe in going otherwise because it is not worth wasting all your money on college.  I guess I am dumb because I still wanted to go.  I look at the money available and if my math is right I am only going to be here for two years.  That sucks; I wanted to graduate.  I reassure myself that something will happen.  I’ll find a way to pay for college.

I moved away from the money.  We I am at now jobs are scarce.  Finding a job seems impossible.  I know that back home there are jobs.  Maybe I’ll have to go to school there.  I really don’t want to but I might not have a choice.  I could hope my parent pay for my education, but I never see them having any money.  They always complain about the bills and stuff and they never seem to have any money to spend on themselves.  Also, if they do pay for me, I might not want that.  They will tell everyone that they paid for my education and hold it against me.

I fell more optimistic because it could of been worse.  I hear financial aid stories all the time and they are worse than mine.  My friend came out of the closet and so her parents declined to pay for her college.  Because she is under 24 she cannot get financial aid because of her parents income but she can’t force her parents to pay for college either.  She thought it was all over for her but she found a way to cheat the system.  The law states that if you are married heterosexually than your parents are no longer responsible for paying for your college.  So she found a friend and married him.  Now she receives financial aid.  She married for money- yeah- but it had to be done.


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