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Weighing in the Cost of Your Education

May 3, 2016

It is no doubt that the cost of education these days are causing a huge strain on individuals who would like to pursue advanced degrees. I wanted to break it down a little for you all if this is something you are weighing in as you decide to pursue a career as registered nurse/NP. 



The application process itself can cause welts in the wallet. Firstly, how many schools are you looking to apply to? For me, I made myself a list of programs across the states that I was remotely interested in attending first. From there, I crossed a few off the list that maybe had requirements I didn't meet. I ended up with 8 schools I wanted to apply to. From my research online, I found that most individuals apply anywhere from 3-8 schools, with an average of applying to 6 schools. So, I found that I had a good chance of being accepted to at least a few of the 8 schools I applied to. 

**Now, we break down the costs for applying --

8 applications x ~ $65 application fee (ranges between $50-$100) = $520

5 UCSD transcripts x $17 each = $85 (I say 5 transcripts because a few schools didn't require official transcripts to be sent, so no cost there).

5 Community College transcripts x $5 each = $25 

$100 one time personal statement edit from hired professional (I paid someone to help edit my paper, not everyone needs/wants to do this). 

--> The TOTAL comes about to be about $730 spent on applying to nursing school alone. 

(( Keep in mind, this does not include travel costs if you need to interview at a school. Some people may need to drive long distances, or even fly across states )) 



This, of course, ranges from school to school. I chose to attend Columbia University which has a hugggggeeeeee price tag as a private, Ivy League institution. Although they offered some scholarship money, this does not even compare to the total cost of the program. 

I won't go into too many specifics, but I will let you know that...

TUITION alone for the first Master's year (Summer, Fall, Spring) = $87,000 

The ESTIMATED COST OF ATTENDANCE MASTER'S PORTION ONLY (living expenses, textbooks, school fees, health insurance, loan fees, personal expenses, etc). = approx $127,000 


I'll just let that sink in for you for a second... ...



YUP. I know, it's a lot of money. I will tell you that not ALL schools have this sort of cost to their programs. You should compare public universities to private universities, in-state tuition, out-of-state tuition, cost of living in certain cities, etc. There are a lot of factors to consider, and financing is a huge one. For me, personally, I will be taking out Federal loans and Grad PLUS loans to help cover my tuition. I will be scouring for scholarship opportunities online throughout my schooling, anything helps. 


I have pretty much accepted the fact that I will be in hundreds of thousands of dollars of debt by the time I graduate. But, I hope that in choosing Columbia, I will be paying for the quality education, connections, and opportunities that will help me succeed in my future career. 


Best of luck with financing your futures, everyone! I didn't mean to scare any of you off. I really do believe in long term investments, and securing a quality education is definitely an investment worth making. So, weigh in all your factors, and trust your instincts! 








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