The cost of going to college increases substantially each year. Students try to keep costs down with scholarships, loans, etc. A great way to do this is through work study programs. Most colleges will let students work at the school in various capacities (dishwasher, library assistant, research assistant, housekeeping...) and instead of giving a salary, the college will deduct costs from the students' tuition. This can be a great opportunity to meet new people on campus, get to know a different part of the college, and perhaps make out-of-classroom connections with professors. Even the connections you make when working in dining halls can be invaluable. People often return to their dorms after work study in the cafeterias with trays of left over cookies, and we all know that in the college environment cookies can be a savior.
Most college websites should have information on work study programs. Check it out! And if you are still applying to schools, consider work study when thinking about those unbelievable tuition costs.