The country's financial crisis has turned into an unsettling lesson in economics for many local college students.
Students often depend on their parents for financial help, and some of those parents have lost a lot of investment money on Wall Street.
American University freshman Angie Lewis said that between scholarships and her job she hopes to make it through these tough times. However, she knows other students who are not so lucky. They're planning to leave school.
"Even freshman are going to transfer to go to a cheaper school near their home and places like that," Lewis said.
American University recently e-mailed students to let them know there is help available if they are struggling financially.
"What we are really concerned about is our prospective students and as they look at schools, whether or not an institution that costs almost $50,000, whether that's going to be affordable," AU's director of financial aid said. "We want to make sure we're there to help them bridge the gap."
At George Washington University, the school recently eliminated the deadline for financial aid applications. Also, because of the economy, they're going to give an $8 million boost to the pool of grant money available next year.