Just over a week ago, my college reality changed.
As most of you know, I committed to attend Hillsdale College this fall to major in Political Economy. Hillsdale granted me a sizable merit scholarship, a generous financial aid package, and loans through the school. Additionally, I qualified for an outside scholarship from my work.
A week ago, I called to confirm that my loans were indeed set up for this upcoming school year, which starts on the 26th of August. They informed me that only some of the money is available through the school, and I also needed to find an outside private loan to make up the difference. I was shocked. Since February, it has been my understanding that I would sign for the loan myself, through Hillsdale, and I would be set to arrive at Hillsdale in twenty-two days.
In the past several days, it became abundantly clear that no bank or credit union will give a loan to an eighteen year-old without a credit history. Further, despite my best efforts, I have been unable to find a co-signer. At this point, I am unable to secure any private loans, whatsoever.
Because of Hillsdale College’s commitment to stay independent from federal government involvement, it does not accept any federal funds; thus, normal methods of student loans are not available to me, including the FAFSA and other government loans. (In fact, many student loans companies do not even lend to Hillsdale students, as they do not readily acknowledge the fact that it is an accredited college.)
I explained my dilemma to the Financial Aid Office, and they generously doubled the available loans through the school. I now only need to make up the $5000 difference. I recognize that I set my ambitions high by choosing to attend a selective, private school when I do not have the ability to pay for the schooling up front. This $5000 is due before I arrive on campus.
Fortunately, I have opportunities to prevent this situation from happening next year. The owner of the Chick-Fil-A, for whom I have worked during the past two years, is allowing me to come back to work over the summers and breaks. I also will be working on-campus during the school year to save up for future semesters. Many additional scholarships are available to Hillsdale students after they prove themselves as a freshman. Now that I am eighteen, I can establish a credit history for myself and qualify to apply for student loans by myself. I don’t believe the next three years will present this same problem.
In all of my life, in all that I do, I only desire to bring glory to God. He is the One Who brought me to this school. If it is still in His will that I attend Hillsdale, He will make a way. If it is not His plan for my life, then I will praise Him always. My purpose of telling you all my story so far is to express how God has already been glorified in what He has done for me by getting me to this point in my life. He is making the seemingly impossible possible.
When I explained this situation to some people who are close to me, many suggested I set up this page, and see what God does through you all. I would definitely appreciate any financial help you may all be able to give me. My human nature makes it difficult for me to ask for help and lay my problems out for all to see, but maybe this is part of God’s plan to teach me to humble myself and receive His mercy. I may never know.
Finally, I ask for your prayers that I can glorify God in whatever may happen and that He may grant me wisdom when I need it the most.
“Nevertheless I am continually with You; You hold me by my right hand. You will guide me with Your counsel, And afterward receive me to glory. Whom have I in heaven but You? And there is none upon earth that I desire besides You. My flesh and my heart fail; But God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. For indeed, those who are far from You shall perish; You have destroyed all those who desert You for harlotry. But it is good for me to draw near to God; I have put my trust in the Lord GOD, That I may declare all Your works.” Psalms 73:23-28
Much love to you all!
- Stephanie Lape
- Anonymous Good Luck!
- Samuel K Mullett
- Nathanael Leavitt
#1 fundraising platform
More people start fundraisers on GoFundMe than on any other platform. Learn more
In the rare case something isn’t right, we will work with you to determine if misuse occurred. Learn more
Expert advice, 24/7
Contact us with your questions and we’ll answer, day or night. Learn more