Schools without Hidden Expenses: Part 2
When you’re a college student, every penny counts.
It’s a lesson you learn quickly after stepping onto campus for your first semester, and it remains true all the way through graduation. Whether you’re treating yourself to a meal out after acing an exam, enjoying a night at the movies or doing some shopping at local stores, you have to choose carefully how you’ll spend your money.
There’s a reason why you’re on a budget. Not only are you spending tens of thousands—and sometimes hundreds of thousands—of dollars on tuition, but you also have to deal with the avalanche of fees. Between housing, books and a meal plan, the additional expenses are seemingly never-ending.
Laptops and other mobile learning devices are no exception.
In order to get by in college, a reliable laptop is a must. However, the unfortunate reality is that costs can go through the roof. Some schools even require you to purchase a specific type of laptop, making it difficult to find an affordable option that cushions the financial blow.
This issue is worth considering as you apply to colleges, especially if you’re looking to save some cash and avoid unexpected fees. Here are 10 schools that include laptops or other essential devices as part of tuition, allowing you to dodge at least one extra expense:
Between its textbook rental and laptop programs, Northwest Missouri State saves students nearly $7,300 during their four-year academic careers. Upon arriving to campus, all full-time undergraduates and graduate students receive a laptop fully loaded with all necessary software.
Located just 30 minutes from the heart of Boston, Babson College is widely considered one of the nation’s top colleges in entrepreneurship education. All 2,100 undergraduates enjoy the benefit of a school-issued laptop, with the expense included as part of the flat-rate tuition.
Sitting less than 20 miles west of Manhattan, Seton Hall’s campus offers a small-town feel in South Orange, N.J., while the big city life isn’t far away. For students, the university also ensures that laptop costs are never a concern. Not only do new enrollees pick up their laptops from the school during orientation, but two years later, they get a new laptop that they can keep after graduation.
Upon enrolling at this four-year institution just outside of Detroit, all incoming freshmen receive their choice of an Apple MacBook Pro or an iPad. While there are no hidden fees attached, the deal does come with an incentive to stay in school; students who complete at least six full semesters may keep their device, while those who fail to meet that requirement will pay a prorated charge.
Formerly known as the C.W. Post Campus of Long Island University, LIU Post issues free iPad minis to newly enrolled full-time undergraduate students. In order to keep their iPad mini at no charge, recipients must maintain their full-time status through their first term.
With an enrollment of just over 1,500 undergraduate students, Southern Nazarene is just a 20-minute drive from Oklahoma City. This small private school equips all students with new laptops, along with the option of paying an additional charge for an upgraded machine. Each student retains ownership of their device after completing their first semester.
Not to be confused with the previously mentioned Seton Hall University, Seton Hill also has a pretty sweet deal for new enrollees. Full-time undergraduate students at this Greensburg, Pa., university are provided an iPad, while freshmen also get to kick off their college careers with a new MacBook.
Since 2012, this private university just outside of Boston has presented all full-time undergraduates with an iPad. Each device comes preloaded with apps tailored to the school’s classes, with all costs already covered in tuition.
Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota eases the financial for online graduate students by issuing iPads that are covered by tuition. The iPads come complete with productivity apps so students can read textbooks and instantly share notes with others, see their classmates as they build group projects, hold video conferences with instructors during office hours and much more.
At this private university in central Florida, full-time undergraduate students living on campus are eligible for a laptop provisioning program. Each student receives a fully functional and supported laptop and can stay in the program as long as they maintain full-time undergraduate enrollment at SLU for two consecutive academic years, while living on campus for one of those years.