The key to beating rising tuition costs may lie in graduating from college in 3 years instead of the usual four. The trick is being able to successfully complete more classes than you normally do in one semester, be willing to enroll in summer courses, and essentially sacrificing much of your campus life to pull it off. A couple universities currently offer 3 year degree programs, and more state governments are beginning to offer students the same option. While the heavier course load will keep you busy, there are some pros. One, you look good on paper, and stand out to potential employers, possibly beating out many applicants for the same job. Two, there’s the money you’ll save from one less year of school, more if you consider the fact that many students take 5 years to graduate.

So, what say you, clutchettes. Would you consider cramming courses to save a whole year of tuition?

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  • Ann

    Well, I am in community college, so my dad pays for everything through his credit card. When I transfer I will have no debt, but I know university is very expensive. I am still a freshman, almost done with my basic classes. I will try to take at least 15 hours a semester and summer classes. We also have 3 week mini sessions. My main goal is to finish university within 4 years so I can start my career in Finance. I hope by 2013 the economy is in better shape. I want to start building my wealth right away.

  • 2010 graduate

    I will be graduating in 2 weeks and I finished college in 2 and a half years, which is mainly due to my high school program. I just turned 21, and I’m the youngest of ly graduating class and one of the few people who’s graduated that I went to high school with. Being done is great, before I thought I would miss out on my youth, but with the fact that so many of my grinds are still in school, I still have access to the college scene, but with a better bank accnt! Also, being out of school, especially at a young age, reinforces that there’s so many career options to consider, I’m not running and jumping into a career because age or other obligations permit it. I have the opportunity to take time off and find me, something that a 23 year old graduate will get second looks for.

    My only thing is, don’t take more than you can handle because your gpa will show for it, and that money is non-refundable. What it comes down to is the path that one chooses to take, no one can properly determine what’s best for someone else. Many of my friends think life is over for me and that I shouldve stayed at school another year; the idea of me possibly doing that disturbs me; this is partly due to my belief that college is an experience for some. However, I’m living and discovering life now more than ever as opposed to sleeping through my 8 am classes.

    • deena

      The average graduation age is 21/22 actually if you graduate in 4 years, depending on your birth date.

      And just because someone graduates later doesn’t mean that they can’t take time to find themselves, or that they can’t enjoy their youth. I personally don’t understand why people are automatically ready to fit any 20-something over the age of 22 with a dentures and a walker.

  • luxe87

    I graduated after 3 years in college last spring and was lucky enough to acquire a job within 2 months of my graduation. I feel this was the best decision I could have made. Graduating early has not only saved me around $8000, but working for the last year and living at home has allowed me to save a good amount of money and acquire a wonderful year of experience in my field at 22 years of age. While I did have to sacrifice my social life in order to graduate with a science major and a good gpa in 3 years, I feel like I’m learning and living so much more now than I ever did in college. I feel like I am maturing and figuring out things about myself and my desires for life that college previously distracted me from.