Paying for arch schools...


After finding out Sci Arc's M.Arch program costs an arm and a leg I got a little bummed. Nearly every school I am interested in applying to is expensive. 

Do these schools offer any aid or scholarships before I would apply for federal loans: UCLA, USC and Cal Poly Pomona? 

I think federal aid offers 20k in loans a year but that would basically cover tuition at two of these schools, and tuition and room and board at one; Cal Poly Pomona. 

How do people of lesser means afford these schools? 

Also, I found a great program at UCLA Extension in Landscape Architecture. I could go for practically free considering the aid provided there. But how would a Professional Landscape Certificate even look to potential employers? 

Oct 7, 13 2:29 am
Free is always good. Can you apply the credits to another program later and get the degree you want cheaper?
Oct 7, 13 8:21 am

Yes a lot of people do that. I guess that's a good option too. But if I were to finish the professional certificate would that look good at all to employers? 

How do people even pay for arch school? 

I'm glad you came up with that idea because I've heard a lot of people go to the ucla extension program and then transfer to save money. Most go to cal poly pomona where they have an agreement with. 

but do you guys think other schools might accept ucla extension course for arch? It's reputable program in CA, but I'm also looking at schools in tx. Would courses only translate to an mla and not a standard m.arch? 

Oct 7, 13 10:13 am

Anyone else? 

Oct 7, 13 3:56 pm
I went to USC from 2001-2006 and ended up with roughly $24,000 in loans. The school gave me a $20,000 grant each year I was there. If it wasn't for that, I probably would have been drowning in debt, or had gone to another school.

The grant was given to me as part of my financial aid package. So grants is probably the best way to afford college and not be left in horrible debt.
Oct 7, 13 4:27 pm

Was that for B.arch or M.arch? There is little finding for masters programs

Oct 7, 13 4:35 pm
That was for my B. Arch
Oct 7, 13 4:44 pm

I was almost happy lol 

anyone know about funding for m.archs? 

Oct 7, 13 5:05 pm

The question is not how but why.

Oct 7, 13 6:42 pm

Why, as in its not worth it? 

Oct 7, 13 8:11 pm

Is there anyone in here that's paid for a masters? How did you do it? Through a combo of loans grants and scholarships or all loans? 

Oct 8, 13 11:12 am

I paid for my MArch/MSRE through a combo of federal loans and scholarships. I am swimming in debt. It's ridiculous.

Oct 8, 13 1:45 pm

What' school? So arch schools offer other aid besides loans? 

Oct 8, 13 5:13 pm

I just called usc and they offer merit based scholarships but how hard are those to get, especially the kind that pay for a huge chunk of the tuition? 

Oct 9, 13 11:52 am

Rule of thumb: total debt should be less than expected first year salary.  There are plenty of online loan repayment calculators to help you see how much you may be afford to pay back (be reasonable on your salary expectations) - generally 10% of your take home income.

I have debt, a lot of it, I manage to pay the minimums but it did prevent me from taking certain risks in employment.  I worked part-time in a firm to help defray costs but even with some scholarships it's still a lot more debt than I reasonably should have taken out.  It prevents me from taking on work at smaller up-and-coming firms or buying a house, otherwise it's manageable.

As Miles asked - why do you want to go to grad school?  If the motivation and drive is there, there's plenty of ways to make it work.

Oct 9, 13 5:02 pm

I ave the drive and the motivation. I am not looking to be a millionaire but just want to work in the field. 

USC said they have merit based scholarships but I wonder how difficult it is to land a merit based scholarship? 

the most it covers is 75% tuition, so that is good but I would also need to take out loans to live considering its not wise to have full time work while going to grad school arch. 

Oct 10, 13 2:05 am
I did my grad school at rice w full ride and loans to cover living expenses. I lived like a pauper and was often broke. Still came out with a $20k loan to pay back. And that was a long time ago. Do your best to pay as little as possible for grad school, you will appreciate it later.
Oct 10, 13 7:22 am

I agree but was that for grad school at rice? I would kill to go there. I wouldn't even need housing since my parents live in Houston. Did u get a good job? 

Oct 10, 13 11:26 am

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