It ain’t just ramen anymore

The different stages of a broke college student

When people think of a college student, one word comes to mind: “broke.” But college students know that there are levels to that stigma.

There are many aspects that may contribute to the varying prices between younger classmen and older classmen including housing, food and tuition. While tuition increases for upper classmen, housing and food expenses may decrease depending on the student. 

As underclassmen, students may not consider themselves “broke” or find themselves struggling to stay afloat. 

“As of right now, my parents pay for everything,” Ferris nursing freshman Karmen Eishoff said. “But I know that’s probably subject to change as I continue with my schooling.”

Eishoff has applied to be a resident advisor (RA) for her sophomore year, which could cut back on the cost of living expenses as RAs do not pay for room and board.

Eishoff prefers eating at campus dining rather than dining out.

“I have the small meal plan—I think it’s the silver meal plan—I try and take advantage of the meal plan as much as I can, just because, again, my parents are paying for it, so I want to use it when I can,” Eishoff said.

As an upperclassman, Ferris elementary education junior Sarah Quick has noticed that her money is being spent a different way since her freshman year.

“I have to save more money so I can spend it for school,” Quick said. “I know when I was an underclassman I could spend more money on whatever I kind of wanted to. Tuition has definitely increased. That was a big, obvious [change].”

Quick is spending more money out of pocket for food and things for her apartment.

“For my apartment, I can’t use financial aid, so the halls ended up being more expensive tuition-wise but out-of-pocket-wise, the apartments would probably be more expensive,” Quick said.

Although financial situations vary among different students, it is clear that many experience a dramatic change in the overall cost of attending college.