Every person deserves to be educated, especially children. Education would help them reach their dreams and determine how well they can do in the world. No matter where they came from and what background they may have, they deserve the right to be educated.
Unfortunately, while it is a right every person must have, pursuing one’s studies can be quite tricky if you do not have the funds to pay for it. Some schools do offer free education, but it may only be for elementary years. If you successfully graduate from high school, pursuing college or university would require a massive amount of funds, especially if you would go to top ranking universities.
Singapore is one of Asia’s top hubs for high-level education, especially for those aspiring to work in the IT industry and business. However, it is also one of the most expensive places in Asia to get a higher education. Even if a person has the talent to finish their degree, they would not be able to proceed any further with their education if they do not have the financial means to finish it.
Fortunately, getting funds to pay for education in Singapore is easy if you do a little bit of research. For parents, you can check out moneylender companies, banks, and credit unions and avail for a personal loan which you can use for your child’s education. These personal loans can then be paid while your child is studying. Moneylender companies may even have specialized personal loans which would match your income so you can pay them without problems.
Alternatively, if you have a low annual income, approaching groups like Ministry of Social and Family Development can also assist in creating a plan that would let your children study without hampering your budget.
Unfortunately, these financial aids can only do so much as tuition fees increase each year. No matter how much you budget, additional fees would always pop when you least expect them.
So how can you fund your education?
Nowadays, student loans are the most common way students in Singapore pay their college bills. It can be requested either from the federal government or from a private company, namely banks.
Of course, there are some certain things you need to consider before you look into student loans because it is not applicable to everyone.
- Consider if your degree is still relevant and updated now that information is discovered regularly. If you are pursuing a master’s or doctorate, make sure the courses are updated before you seek a student loan for it.
- You must also see your finances if you can still go for higher degrees. If you do work immediately after finishing your bachelor’s degree, you need to do some financial balancing to get that MBA you are dreaming off.
- Education prices are different for foreigners living in the country because of additional requirements. Some schools do provide financial aid and scholarship for foreign students, but they vary depending on your degree and background.
Private vs Government Student Loans
However, there are certain requirements before you can apply for a student loan: whether it is private student loans or government student loans/assistance.
For private student loans, you must:
- Have a good credit rating
- Must have a co-signer or guarantor who has a good credit rating. If you are Singaporean, your guarantor/co-signer must be Singaporean. If you are a foreign student, your guarantor could be of any nationality.
Usually, private student loans from banks like DBS, CIMB and OCBC do not have interest rates attached to their loans. However, they do vary as to when you need to pay them. Both DBS’s study loan and OCBC’s FRANK loan can be paid after graduation. OCBC allows repayments to be done as late as 2 years after you graduate. Usually, the loan tenure for both these two banks can span up to 20 years depending on your agreement with the bank.
On the other hand, CIMB’s loans require borrowers to pay the interest while you are studying for your undergraduate degree.
The federal government also offer student financing if students pass their requirements. Requirements vary depending on the school you are applying for, your degree and the government’s financial program. Alternatively, you can use tax credits to reduce your school fees which can increase depending on your income.
Scholarships are also one good way to pay for your education. Some scholarships take into account your gender, religion, race and background before you are accepted. Your grades in your earlier years may also affect your chances of getting financing for your tertiary years. Once you get accepted, the scholarship may be able to at least pay a part or in full your entire college education.
If you will consider scholarships for your higher education, make sure you do your research to learn their requirements because not all scholarships can be used for certain degrees.
When you already got your degree and now employed, you can ask your employer to fund your schooling. Of course, your course must be related to your current job. If you are working for the government, you can seek tuition assistance to pay for your education fees.
Enrolling Part Time
Instead of going full time, you might want to consider taking your course part-time while you work. This will allow you to accumulate experience as you earn your degree. However, the downside is that you might burn yourself out, juggling both priorities in life. And those who completed their course full time will be ahead of you in their set careers.
All of us wish to be successful in life and reach the top. However, if we do not have the right education and skill set to back us up, we will not be able to reach our dreams and aspirations.
Fortunately, even if the price of learning is becoming unbearable, there are means to still get by it. Consider what you want in life and plan accordingly on how you will fund your education to attain what you want.