FVTC Fits My Life

| By: Britten, Casey

One local resident shares her experiences about paying for college as part of Gannett Wisconsin’s recent Degrees of Debt series.

The article, "$10K tuition way too pricey, FVTC fits me fine," (Oshkosh Northwestern, December 14, 2016, online), tells the story of Paralegal student Kaela Lundeen’s journey to discovering how FVTC makes college education affordable while guiding students to rewarding careers.

$10K tuition way too pricey, FVTC fits me fine

Choosing where to go to college is a huge choice. It's an even bigger deal for me because of the amount of debt I’ll be taking on.

When I was a freshman in high school, I really wanted to go to the University of Wisconsin-Madison. I knew I would need to work hard to get accepted, and I tried my very best throughout high school despite setbacks.

At that time, I hadn't learned much about financial management, so I didn't know how out of reach my dream was. I learned sophomore year that tuition alone is more than $10,000 per year, which is so unbelievably out of my price range that I needed to change my plans.

I wasn’t really sure where to go from that point. I was living in Eau Claire. I had seen the UW-Eau Claire campus and wasn’t really fond of it. I also wanted to get away from my mom, which made me want to look elsewhere.

Two colleges down and still no plan. While it was somewhat early for a high school student to be looking into college, I was still frightened about my options. School is really important to me, and I really wanted to find the perfect fit for me.

It wasn’t until I moved to Appleton and had been attending Appleton West for half a semester that I learned about options in the Fox Cities.

UW-Fox Valley was the first local option I heard about. It was more affordable and a little more desirable than my previous choices, especially because I would be close to home.

During my junior year, I was set on attending UWFox, and I just focused on school and my job. I worked hard to do well in school, and I feel that I accomplished my goal.

Toward the end of my junior year, we took a school field trip to Fox Valley Technical College. The tour gave me a small glance at the actual school, but it made an impression.

I thought the school was absolutely beautiful. On top of that, the credit transfers available and lower cost presented an exciting opportunity for me. Quite frankly, the cost at Fox Valley Tech is the lowest I’ve seen. For a student taking 12 credits, one year's tuition is a little more than $3,500.

That trip almost made the choice for me. I really wanted to go to FVTC, but the college didn’t have a program that interested me. I still planned on going to UWFox.

I was sad FVTC wouldn't be an option for me, until a friend told me the college recently added a paralegal program. At that very moment, I was sold on FVTC.