How to Pay for College Tuition and Expenses With a Business

  • Gen Z is paying double what boomers paid for college, and experts say costs will keep rising.
  • Now Gen Z students who are also entrepreneurs are using their profits for education expenses.
  • Three student entrepreneurs explain how they pay for college costs with their income.

Even though college tuition rates have recently dropped in some states, the overall cost of higher education in the US is still expensive.

A 2021 report by Georgetown University’s Center on Education and the Workforce found that between 1980 and 2020, the average price of tuition, fees, and room and board for an undergraduate degree increased by 169%. What’s more, prices have soared across all types of institutions: Data from US News & World Report found that over the past 20 years, tuition increased by 144% at private colleges, 171% at public colleges for out-of-state students, and 211% at public colleges for in-state students.

Right now, Gen Z is paying double what boomers paid for college, according to a 2021 report by GoBankingRates, a

money management

company. Scholarships don’t cover every cost, leading some college students – who also happen to be entrepreneurs – to use their business earnings to pay for tuition, room and board, books, and personal expenses.

“I definitely wouldn’t have been able to afford college without it,” Sidney Wang told Insider. The 21-year-old is in her third year at San Jose State University in California, majors in design studies, and taps the revenue from her online Etsy store – GemsbySidney – to pay for college expenses. “It just feels really good when you purchase something you made with your own money.”

Insider spoke to three Gen Z entrepreneurs in college to see how much of their earnings go toward education and living expenses.

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