Want Help Paying For School?

I’d like to take the opportunity to share the course of my life these past few weeks. A couple days after my last post, I discovered that I’d been accepted into a Sustainable MBA program. Hurrah! At first it was exhilarating. Then it dawned on me that I’d better get cracking on my FAFSA, among other things. For all those in school or planning on going to school, read on to get a little help on the money side of things.

First things first, check out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (or FAFSA for short) form, now available completely online at I swear it is much less painful than it used to be, and was certainly less painless than doing my taxes this year! All you’ll need really is your last tax return handy, and some uninterrupted time in front of the laptop. The rest they really explain step by step, and even let you save to come back later.

If you’ve got the free time, searching for industry-, location-, or need-based scholarships, fellowships or grants could save a ton. Because I will be entering into the program this fall, most of these applications are going to have to wait till fall or next spring while I’ve been in it for almost a year. Whether you’re an undergrad or grad, here’s some places I looked and what I’ve found along the way:

American Nursery & Landscape Association scholarships offered through the HRI Endowment Fund

Landscape Architecture Foundation

Internship or Fellowship programs for MBA candidates

Garden Club of America Scholarships and Fellowships

Switzer Foundation Fellowship Program

Learn about other loan forgiveness programs now offered

Also check with your local Higher Education Council or DOE. There, you can find scholarships are awarded for both the state you live in and the state you’re interested in attending school.

As for the relentless search for the perfect school, The National Center for Education Statistics has a great resource for you called the College Navigator. It allows prospective students the chance to browse colleges by location, programs offered, tuition, and many others. Be sure to use this tool as an initial indicator of whether you’d be interested in the school, but also know that the site takes averages that may not hit your specific program’s tuition right on the mark. Contacting the school directly will get you the best answer once you’ve narrowed your search.

If there is anything I’ve missed, please post it here to share!

Published in Blog


  1. the federal government makes it pretty easy to apply for aid through the FAFSA, paying those loand back is another thing. I just found out I have something like 23 separate federal loans and more than five lenders, which cannot be consolidated if I am correct. Just pay attention to what you sign up for I guess, the FAFSA isn’t too painful.

  2. Thats the thing with the fed loans, they are just whitewashing what you are getting yourself into. I guess the days of going to the bank or credit union and saying “Hi, I need a loan for school” are over. i trust my credit union far more than any government agengy not to screw the whole thing up. So much for choice.

  3. Sorry to hear that some folks have had a bad experience with loans. This post was meant to be a tool for those either in school or applying to school so that they might have some additional resources on hand. I thought it would be helpful to put these out there and hope that there are other opportunities people can share. There is a discussion going on elsewhere on land8lounge all about loans but it’s been getting a little on the bitter side, I just hope that doesn’t happen here. That was obviously not my intention. Let’s talk about scholarships! 🙂

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