Paying for College

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Paying for College

Attending a community college is a great way to keep your tuition costs low. In-state tuition and fees are typically 63% less at a community college vs. in-state tuition and fees for a 4-year university.*

However, paying for any college tuition can seem overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be. Our member colleges make attending your community college of choice affordable for anyone. There are numerous options to pay for college and we can alleviate most of the financial strains that attending college can incur. Explore your many payment options below.

*AACC Fast Facts 2018

Payment and Aid Options

Financial Aid

Financial aid is a great option to help you pay for college. This is money that you don’t have to pay back and is based on your financial ability to pay for college. Federal student aid comes from the federal government – specifically, the U.S. Department of Education. It is money that helps a student pay for higher education expenses. Federal student aid covers such expenses as tuition and fees, room and board, books and supplies, and transportation. Contact your community college for more information or visit FAFSA to apply for financial aid today.


There are a variety of grants available to relieve the strain of paying for college. This is free money that may come from the government, corporations, or other private organizations that you do not have to repay. Grants are awarded based on financial need and/or life circumstances, such as students who choose certain careers, veterans, disability, and other categories. Contact your community college of choice to see if you qualify.


Obtaining a scholarship can drastically reduce the cost of college. Scholarships are a type of financial aid that does not need to be repaid. Scholarships are awarded on various criteria usually reflecting the values and purposes of the donor of the award. Scholarships can be based on merit, need, demographics, or career focus. Contact your community college to find out what scholarships are available to you.

Work Study

You may not realize, but you can work at your college and the money earned will help pay for attendance. Work Study encourages community service work and work related to the course of study. It is available to full-time or part-time students and is awarded to students with financial need. Contact your college for more information.

Other Options

If you do not receive assistance through one of the options above, there are several ways to make college affordable. Student loans are a great way to ease the financial burden that college costs can have. Contact your college for more information or visit the links below for additional resources.


We Enroll Nearly 260,000 Students in our Consortium of Nine Community Colleges, almost 1/4 of all Community College Students in Texas!

Hear What Our Students Have to Say!

  • The experience that I gained at HCC led to my first job in the TV News world because I was able to put on my resume that I ran a camera, I knew how to do teleprompter, I could write and produce, and that's how I ended up getting a position at KHOU as a production assistant. Another great opportunity at HCC was receiving a scholarship because I paid for my books, my classes were taken care of, all of my supplies, and that meant that I could truly focus on what I wanted out of my career and spending more time at HCC TV.

    Brittaney Wilmore
    Brittaney Wilmore HCC Graduate, Digital Producer at ABC 13
  • If you think you can't do it, come over here to Weekend college, we'll turn that can't into can. Most definitely, I do recommend that this weekend program will be good for any future students. They're actually going to get their bills paid and still get school work done. It's a big change.

    Eduardo Perez
    Eduardo Perez Welding Graduate, Lee College