Bang for your Buck: Getting the Most for your Tuition


It has become a universal truth that college kids are not usually blessed with unlimited financial support. We work our butts off to have enough cash to have a life. But when we get that long-awaited paycheck, it usually ends up having to go toward necessities rather than fun outings or additions to our closet. It’s sad but true, ladies. Fortunately for us lucky Florida Gators, UF provides numerous opportunities to save money on the things that matter.  You are paying the tuition; why not get some free (okay, cheaper) stuff out of it?

Personally, I have not been to a doctor or dentist in years (literally) because I don’t have medical insurance or the bottomless funds required to go to a doctor or dentist. However, here at UF, we have the option to go the wellness center, the health clinic, or the dental clinic.

The health clinic is the perfect place to get basic medical assistance for a cold, a check up or just to get something looked at. This is also the place to go for questions about sexual health. The health clinic provides free consultations paid for by the medical fee in your tuition statement. All visits are free, but some labs and specialty consultations can incur charges. However, the university subsidized all tests and they run around $30 a lab, compared to $300. Free condoms are also given out at the health clinic, which is something we all need to think about to keep ourselves safe.

The School of Dentistry provides dental services to students at 30-50 percent less than in a private practice. This means you can get cleaning and dental work done right on campus. However, be aware that dental students who are in training will do these procedures. As such, there is a prescreening process that will determine if you are what the school is looking for in a practice student.

Stress counseling: 
The university cares a lot about your mental and emotional health. The wellness center is happy to provide all students with stress counseling, time management help and mental health screenings. This service is essential in early diagnosis of mental health that usually begins showing symptoms in early adulthood. Keep your heart and your mind in check at the wellness center; it’s free and useful. Keep in mind that most medical insurances are accepted on campus and that most prescriptions can be filled on site at the pharmacy.

Most of our colleges require at least one piece of overpriced software. Although gadgets are fun to play with, the price tag can set you back on a rent payment. Luckily for us, the university has gone so far as to offer whole system upgrades for Windows and the latest versions of Microsoft Office. This means that you will not have to pay hundreds of dollars to keep your machines current as long as you are a University of Florida student.

But wait, it gets better!

UF also provides a free subscription to all students to, a tutorial website that teaches users to navigate all Adobe programs as well as some other tricky software. This is an invaluable resource for all students navigating the changing media landscape. Don’t have Adobe? Not a problem! Through a new program hosted by Adobe, having a .edu email address opens the opportunity to get a full Adobe Cloud for only $20 a month. That means access to Photoshop, Illustrator and InDesign, all super expensive but highly useful. If its hardware you need, the university rents out laptops, cameras, iPads and recording equipment with professor permission. All the things you will ever need to be successful in school are readily available to all students, paid for by your tuition.

Jump on the ball and claim what it yours. You’ve paid for the services, now go forth and use them!

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