Many colleges require students to have a meal plan, especially if they live on campus. Meal plans vary among colleges, but most will give students a certain number of dining hall meals per week. Students may also be able to add flex dollars to use at the campus food court or other locations. The larger the school is, the greater flexibility students may have.
Students who choose their meal plan carefully may be able to cut college costs by selecting the plan that is best for them, according to the Kentucky Higher Education Assistance Authority (KHEAA).
Most often, the meal plan will come out of students’ financial aid or their parents’ money if they’re footing the bill. Funds will be loaded on a card students swipe at on-campus cafeterias and restaurants.
Students can waste a lot of money eating off-campus and even rack up credit card debt by charging food. Most meals on campus are already paid for through the meal plan, so students should eat on campus as much as possible.
KHEAA is the state agency that administers Kentucky’s grant and scholarship programs, including the Kentucky Educational Excellence Scholarship (KEES). It provides financial literacy videos at http://itsmoney.kheaa.com. KHEAA also provides free copies of “It’s Money, Baby,” a guide to financial literacy, to Kentucky schools and residents upon request at firstname.lastname@example.org.
To learn how to plan and prepare for higher education, go to www.gotocollege.ky.gov. For more information about Kentucky scholarships and grants, visit www.kheaa.com; write KHEAA, P.O. Box 798, Frankfort, KY 40602; or call 800-928-8926, ext. 6-7214.