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Faces of Financial Aid: Katey Rudd

After loans, grants, work-study and internships, nutrition major was still $3,000 short of her TCU dream. Financial aid office helped track down new grants to bridge the difference.

Faces of Financial Aid: Katey Rudd

Katey Rudd graduated in May with a degree in nutrition, a paid internship and about $35,000 in student loans.

Faces of Financial Aid: Katey Rudd

After loans, grants, work-study and internships, nutrition major was still $3,000 short of her TCU dream. Financial aid office helped track down new grants to bridge the difference.

Growing up in Connecticut, Katey Rudd wasn’t that familiar with TCU, but she liked the university’s nutrition program and warm Texas climate, so she applied.

She also liked the financial aid package offered by the university.

“TCU gave me the most financial aid in Texas and also had the lowest cost of living,” said Rudd who also considered New York University and Pepperdine.

Those factors were important to Rudd, now a senior nutrition major, because she is paying her own way through college. Her parents, a teacher and freelance artist, aren’t able to offer much financial help to her or her younger sister, Courtney, who also came to TCU.

Through a combination of loans, grants, work-study gigs and internships, Rudd is getting by. In her freshman year, she combined work-study jobs, loans, grants and scholarships to pay for tuition, but still faced a shortfall of close to $3,000. The financial aid office helped her find new grants to make up the difference.

“Their generosity is the reason I have been able to stay here,” she said. “I thank God for them.”

Financial pressures this year caused her to drop an unpaid internship, but she did find a paid internship at a local food bank through AmeriCorps, a national service program that provides tuition grants in exchange for community service. Through AmeriCorps’ Operation Frontline she educates low income families on ways to stretch their food budgets without compromising nutrition.

“I’ve decided to continue working full-time there when I graduate,” she said.

She’ll graduate in May with about $35,000 in student loans. Rudd said her sister, a sophomore majoring in food service management and business, is also working to pay her way through school, logging 30 hours a week at a local Starbucks. But thanks to an even larger financial aid package, her tuition bills are lower.

“The price of tuition has gone up, but the scholarships have gone up too,” she said.

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Katey Rudd
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