Jan 16, 2013
53
10
Status
Pre-Rehab Sci [General]
Hi everyone,

I'm in the process of applying for my masters in OT right now. Although I haven't been accepted anywhere yet I'm EXTREMELY anxious about how I'm going to pay for this all. I'm about 40k in debt for my undergrad degree (and it was a PUBLIC school where I got half of the tuition I needed in grants/scholarships, the rest was all loans) but my parents have been absorbing that. I'm pretty positive that I will have to take over because my parents are very elderly.

I'm set to graduate from undergrad in May. I'm applying to one public program in my home state but they only accept 13 people so my chances are extremely slim. The rest of my programs are all public but out of state, so they're still relatively expensive (30-40k a year!). And I'll have to find housing. My head is just spinning with how I could possibly afford any of it....

Do people really live off of loan money? I heard that graduate schools don't give out need based grants/scholarships, only merit. I know that I may get some government loans from the FAFSA, but as a graduate student, am I expected to file as independent?? I feel pathetic because I hardly have a savings. My BA in psychology certainly won't get me any good jobs in the meantime. Also none of the MOT programs I looked into seemed to have GA or TA jobs except for one. I know I can get a part time job, but I don't know how much that would help, and I don't even know if I'll be able to balance working a lot and a rigorous program. How will you guys do this?? I don't expect any help from my parents.

I'm going to start looking for scholarships and I want to look into places that reimburse your tuition if you work for them for X amount of years. How early should I start looking for those places? (I'm not even accepted into a program yet.)

I just want reassurance that this is possible. I know plenty of people go through with it, and plenty of people manage being happy even in debt, but I'm just so scared. It's become paralyzing lately. Can anyone offer some advice?? :(


Schools I applied to: SUNY Downstate, Stockton (I'm from NJ), UIC, Temple, Pittsburgh, Towson, VCU
And Thomas Jefferson and Wash U... these were two schools whose programs I LOVED but I know would be a dream to attend due to cost. I have heard that private schools give out more aid though, so I thought it was worth a shot.

^^ Just in case anyone knows anything in regards to finances about a particular school!
 
Last edited:
Nov 3, 2013
30
6
Was in the same shoes pre OT/PT school in 2010. My parents definitely could not afford to assist with expenses. I literally lived off of student loans in grad school the entire time. After graduating as an OT, I was able to pick up PRN on weekends while I completed my PT degree that helped a bit with expenses. I also had 2 other roommates that shared rent and utilities. I attended univ of St Aug and the schedule didn't allow for having a job. I still managed to live pretty comfortably. Good Luck
 
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OP
futureotter
Jan 16, 2013
53
10
Status
Pre-Rehab Sci [General]
About how much debt did you have, if you don't mind my asking?