Younger generation worry about paying for college

JACKSON, MO (KFVS) - College can be a financial burden on any family, and new research shows the kids are worrying about it.

TD Ameritrade survey data shows Generation Z, kids that are currently 13 to 22 years old, are worried about how they're going to pay for college.

Summer jobs can be fun with a splash, but kids say they're working to save up their cash.

"I definitely put it in my savings account, put a little bit in my checking to spend here and there, but otherwise yeah, definitely trying to save," said recent Jackson High School graduate Ashley Stahlman.

And a lot of times what kids are saving for, is college.

"They're trying to save money to pay for books and stuff like that, some of the stuff scholarships don't cover," said recent Jackson High School graduate Riley Talbut.

"It's something to always look ahead for, and save money, it's a big concern," said Stahlman.

"We have some students that will graduate a semester early, because they want to work that second semester of high school and save up some money so they can go to college," said Melanie Duncan, one of Jackson High School's Guidance Counselors.

Duncan said more students are enrolling in the A+ program, and going to college closer to home to save money.

"I think they're really thinking, how can I do this," said Duncan.

"They can save almost $100,000 just by going to SEMO because they can stay at home," said Talbut.

Duncan said she talks about financial aid, student loans, and scholarships with students.

"You'll have that student come in that just thinks they can't go to school, and we talk about different ways that they can," said Duncan.

"They always have a whole big wall of applications and stuff, and I would take a peek at it," said Talbut. "I grabbed a lot doesn't mean I filled that many out."

"I think it's just our economy at this time, and more parents that aren't able to help their student, so the kids are becoming more responsible and try to figure out how they're going to do it on their own," said Duncan.

For some, that means, those summer jobs that might last past the summer.

"I see more and more kids working while they're going to high school to help pay their own way, so I think they're already getting a realization of what it's going to take to continue that and pay for college," said Duncan.

Other high school principals like Dr. Mike Cowan at Cape Central High School said they see similar trends, students asking more about financial aid and scholarships.

Schools are also working with university financial aid departments to find ways for kids to go to school.

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