Meet Kriste

I’ve never met anybody who’s judged me.

Grades

“I’ve never met anybody who’s judged me.”

When I was a junior, I was expelled.

Grades

“When I was a junior, I was expelled.”

I didn't know what I wanted to do.

Feeling Overwhelmed

“I didn't know what I wanted to do.”

I don’t really put myself out there a lot.

Feeling Overwhelmed

“I don’t really put myself out there a lot.”

I’m proud to say that I’m doing very well.

Feeling Overwhelmed

“I’m very proud to say that I’m doing very well.”

I went to school for practically nothing.

Cost

“I went to school for practically nothing.”

Money is out there to help you—just look.

Cost

“Money is out there to help you—just look.”

It was stressful but rewarding in the end.

Cost

“It was stressful but rewarding in the end.”

I wanted to be a teacher.

Cost

“I wanted to be a teacher.”

I just assumed I wasn’t going to go.

Cost

“I just assumed I wasn’t going to go.”

It hits you at once.

Feeling Overwhelmed

“It hits you at once.”

I wasn’t sure what to do.

Cost

“I wasn’t sure what to do.”

Everything was in fine print.

Cost

“Everything was in fine print.”

I was a quiet freshman but now I'm outgoing.

Feeling Overwhelmed

“I was a quiet freshman but now I'm outgoing.”

I had to deal with a lot all at once.

Responsibilities

“I had to deal with a lot all at once.”

I stayed close to home so my parents could visit.

Feeling Overwhelmed

“I stayed close to home so my parents could visit.”

It pretty much gave me a full ride.

Cost

“It pretty much gave me a full ride.”

People are willing to help if you ask them.

Cost

“People are willing to help if you ask them.”

I was intimidated since I was undocumented.

Feeling Overwhelmed

“I was intimidated since I was undocumented.”

My father did not want to help me.

Feeling Overwhelmed

“My father did not want to help me.”

I have a good chance of becoming more stable.

Feeling Overwhelmed

“I have a good chance of becoming more stable.”

Leaving the reservation is a huge step.

Feeling Overwhelmed

“Leaving the reservation is a huge step.”

Meet Kriste

 

I knew I had to do it on my own.
Kriste discusses her biggest fear about going to college.
I wanted to be a teacher. (00:18)
Kriste explains why she was willing to go into debt to make college possible.
I wanted to be a teacher.
Now Playing
I knew I had to do it on my own. (00:37)
Kriste discusses her biggest fear about going to college.
I knew I had to do it on my own.
Now Playing
I learned a lot about myself. (00:43)
Kriste speaks about the difference between high school and college.
I learned a lot about myself.
Now Playing

Snapshot

Year in college
Junior
Major
Early childhood education
Family income
$60,000–$80,000
College
Public four-year university
Published yearly in-state tuition and fees
$6,182
Favorite high school class
Journalism
Favorite Facebook game
Sorority Life
Kriste was concerned about cost and worried that she wouldn’t succeed in college on her own.
Her obstacle 

Ever since she was a little girl, Kriste has wanted to be a teacher. She knew that college was the way to get there, but she was nervous about leaving her support system — her family — behind.

“My biggest fear was being on my own, and not [being able to] depend on anyone to make sure that I make it to class on time or finish my work and study for tests,” she says.

Since her parents couldn’t afford to pay full tuition, she also faced the challenge of finding a way to fund her schooling.

How she overcame it 

Kriste decided to attend a public university in her state. She lives on campus, but the college is only 45 minutes from her hometown. This gives her the best of both worlds: she’s far enough away to become more independent, but close enough to visit whenever she feels the need. She says she got over her fear very fast once she got to college.

Kriste applied for financial aid and received a subsidized loan that covered her tuition. She found a private loan to help with room and board.

Life at college 

With a major in early childhood education, Kriste is on track to earn her degree and become a kindergarten teacher. “I like kids because they're energetic and always willing to learn,” she says. “I like that I can motivate them to become better people.”

Her favorite class so far has been Women on Stage and Screen. “I’ve learned a lot about the roles women play, on the stage and off ... [and] the accomplishments women have achieved [and] how dedication is the key to change and success.”

How Kristie paid

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Kriste lives on campus at a public four-year university where she pays in-state tuition. Here’s how she covered expenses, including room and board, her first year.

  • Private Loan: 40%
  • Out-Of-Pocket Contribution: 20%
  • Federal Subsidized Stafford Loan: 40%

Private Loan: Generally, the least desirable loan option with high interest rates; usually requires a parent to cosign.

Out-Of-Pocket Contribution: Past or current income such as savings and earnings from a current job.

Federal Subsidized Stafford Loan: Good need-based loan option from the federal government; doesn’t accrue interest while you’re in school.

Federal Subsidized Stafford Loan 40% Out-Of-Pocket Contribution 20% Private Loan 40%

If you're like Kriste

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