When Tatiana Kukanova first told us that she planned to pay herself through college we all thought that she had either won the lottery, or that she was having us on but as it turned out, she was deadly serious. She announced this about a year before we left for college and her rationale was that she didn’t want to leave college saddled with $100,000 of debt before she had even embarked upon her career. Initially she said that she would try and pay herself through the first year only, but then she would see how it went. As it worked out, Tatiana paid herself through the whole of college and she not only did that, she also graduated to a very high level, and here is how she did it.
To get started Tatiana knew that she would have to have some cash saved up and she aimed to save up half of her first year’s study costs. Given that she had planned this from the year before, she was in a good position to start saving and give herself the kickstart that she needed. And so during the last 6 months of high school and then during the summer before college, she worked 2 jobs day and night until she had amassed around $11,000 in savings.
We were so excited about what Tatiana was trying to do that we set up a GoFundMe account for her, detailing what her plan was. So many people seemed to be impressed by what she was trying to do and by the time we were about to go to college, we gave her the entire cost of her accommodation for the first year.
Everyone chipped in to try and find a job or jobs for Tatiana and within just a few weeks we had found her 2 jobs which paid a little more than minimum wage, which fit around her study hours.
For the first couple of years Tatiana managed to pay for both accommodation and tuition fees and in the third year she was able to move in with a cousin rent free, which of course helped a lot. Tatiana lived frugally and she was super organized with her study and working time. I have no idea how but she always managed to socialize and everyone chipped in in terms of helping her with food and things like that.
Towards the end of her third year Tatiana had started to do some work online, writing work, but it was few and far between. Tatiana worked hard at this because she knew that if the work was there, she could make in an hour what she would make from both her jobs in a day. During that summer Tatiana was worried, this would be the hardest year yet and money was running thin. The week before she went back to college however she called me to say that an online client had come back to her and wanted regular work. Tatiana went back to college, quit both her jobs and that year alone she made $50,000, all whilst finishing the hardest year of college, simply incredible.
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