Below are listed some possible alternatives and strategies. Students are always welcome to make an appointment with a financial aid counselor if they would like to review their individual situation and discuss alternative options in more detail.
Options to reduce costs
- Budget carefully - Students may be able to reduce personal expenses and manage on less than the budgeted amount.
- Graduate as early as possible - Enrolling for as many credits per semester as reasonably possible helps students ensure they will graduate on time. Students need to complete an average of at least 15 credits per semester to graduate in four years.
- Attend Winterim or Summer session - Some students discover it is more economical to attend Winterim or Summer session if additional classes allow them to graduate earlier.
- Use the bus - By using the bus system, many students save on transportation costs. Students may ride the bus for free anywhere in the city by showing their UWEC ID card.
- Think twice before bringing a car on-campus - For most students, not bringing a car on campus is a significant money saver.
Options to increase your resources
- Part-time Employment - Part-time jobs are available on campus and in the Eau Claire community. Many students successfully work part time while attending school, although it is strongly recommended that students do not work more than 15-20 hours per week while they are in school. Job opportunities can be viewed at the “on-line” job board at: www.uwec.edu/finaid/employment
- Summer Employment - Summer employment is an opportunity for many students to save for the next year’s educational expenses.
- Unsubsidized Loans - For some students, additional dollars are available through the unsubsidized loan program. Students can check with the Financial Aid office to determine the amount of additional loan for which they are eligible.
- Parent Loan - Parents of dependent students may borrow under the PLUS program (Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students). Instructions for applying for this loan are available on the Financial Aid Web site: http://www.uwec.edu/finaid/aid/PLUS.htm. Click here for the PDF Application.
- Private Educational Loans - Are offered through private lenders in a student's name. For more information, go to Private Alternative Loans
- Self Loans – This loan is offered to Minnesota residents. For more information and the application, go to
- Review of Aid Eligibility - If students or their parents have experienced a significant change in their financial circumstances within the last year, they should explain those changes in writing. A financial aid counselor will explore whether an adjustment can be made to their “Expected Family Contribution,” increasing their financial aid eligibility.
- Budget Increase - If students have unusual expenses not included in the average budget, they are encouraged to explain their circumstances in writing or discuss their situation with a financial aid counselor.
- Scholarships - Check into scholarship opportunities listed on the Financial Aid Web site: www.uwec.edu/finaid/aid/index.htm