At 26, I was working hard and playing hard in Washington, D.C. I thought that I had everything under control–despite living practically paycheck to paycheck, having significant credit card debt and paying the minimum on my student loans.
Luckily, someone special woke me up to the reality of my financial situation. It took a lot of hard work–and some serious creativity–but three years later, I’m almost debt-free. Here’s my story.
The Pitfalls of Free Money
I knew from the outset of my college search that my parents had limited funds, but that didn’t stop me from attending the University of Maryland out-of-state to get an undergraduate degree in anthropology, and the University of Tennessee out-of-state for my master’s in non-profit education.
I didn’t even try to get scholarships or grants; I funded both degrees with student loans—a common mistake.