Most students do not have a college education handed to them. They have to figure out where they are going to obtain college funding for housing and other needs, and college tuition for the schooling itself. Many students have saved money for college during their high school years by working. Many parents give their children some funding towards college. But there is usually a gap between what funds the student has and what he or she really needs to attend college, whether it is a local school or not.There are two main sources for education financing. One of these resources is federal financial aid, provided for students whose families are not able to afford the expenses of a college education. This financial aid must be repaid, but there is no interest on the loan unless the student does not repay it after the grace period expires.Another resource is financial aid or federal student loans that are provided for students whose families can reasonably afford to pay for college. These college loans have interest attached to them, but at a reasonable rate, usually lower than private loans. There are also private loans, usually through a bank or financial institution, but the interest rates are higher than federal student loans.Some students find that their first student loan did not cover all their years of schooling and all their needs during that time. They may opt to take out another student loan at a later date. That leaves them with multiple loans to repay after they finish college and can be overwhelming. After they finish college and it comes time to repay the loans, the federal government offers to allow them to consolidate student loans, sometimes at a lower rate than the original loans.