Girls, Your Mad Selfie Skills Could Win You Money for College. Here’s How

woman in her home taking a selfie while holding a dog
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College is expensive enough without the added costs of housing, textbooks, transportation, study courses and other odds and ends.

More than half of college students who said they felt unprepared to handle the financial burden of attending school were women, according to a recent study.

Only 39% of men surveyed said the same.

“Women are more influenced by financial standing from start to finish of the college process and are significantly more likely to quit school entirely due to lack of money,” the study states.

That’s why the 1,000 Dreams Fund, a scholarship fund aimed at young women and the group that commissioned the study, is offering more than $10,000 in grants.

Here’s the best part: All you have to do is snap a selfie for a chance to win.

To enter the #MyCollegeCosts Challenge, simply take your best selfie and upload it to the 1,000 Dreams Fund website along with a short explanation of the college cost you need covered — besides tuition.

Examples already posted include college application fees, nursing school supplies and the cost of leadership societies.

You will have to provide your first and last name, zip code, birth date and the name of the school you attend. The contest is only open to female U.S. residents who are at least 16 years old.

The deadline to apply is 11:59 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 7, and the organization will choose the top 10 finalists eligible for grants. Users will then have the chance to vote for their favorite entry to determine the final ranking.

The organization will give the top five finalists $2,250 each. The next five finalists will each get a $250 grant.

The 1,000 Dreams Fund will announce awards Nov. 16.

Oh yeah, and for all you selfie purists out there, it doesn’t have to be a traditional selfie, just an image of yourself.

Besides the #MyCollegeCosts Challenge, the organization offers $1,000 scholarships through its 1,000 Dreams Scholarship Fund.

What You Can Do When College Grants Aren’t on the Table

The hidden college costs will remain a hurdle for the thousands of other girls who don’t win this contest (and likely for the ones who do). But there are plenty of tricks for stretching your pennies further while you’re in college.

For one, don’t splurge on food. You can always make your own coffee, and meal planning is a major key to financial success in college. You should also decide whether one of those unlimited meal plans is actually worth the cost.

You can even eat healthy on a budget!

You should also avoid credit cards and use cash as much as possible.

Oh, and if you’re going to subject yourself to the financial burden of college, you might as well make use of that student ID for discounts at all sorts of businesses.

It’s the second best perk of college, besides, you know, being able to get a job.

Alex Mahadevan is a data journalist at The Penny Hoarder.

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