How to obtain Premium Software and Services for Free as a Student

A global economic depression

The world today is experiencing a continual financial depression and this is affecting almost every area of the our lives. For instance, higher education institutions are constantly raising their tuition fees. Many parents keep changing career and/or adding new jobs just to make ends meet. More students are dropping out of school, and others are being denied admission due to their inability to afford tuition fees.

The high cost of running higher institutions

The truth is that it costs nothing less than a fortune to establish and run standardized higher institution facilities. These ranges from universities to polytechnics and colleges among others. And, it explains why private institutions are very expensive and may not be affordable for low to middle income earners. Government owned institutions on the other hand are usually less expensive. These public institutions leverage on funds and subsidies from government budgets and allocations. However, students’ admission to government institutions are usually very rigorous and highly competitive.

Maximizing higher education studies

Please consider yourself blessed if you are enrolled in higher education already; be it a university, polytechnic or college. You should understand that some other individuals also desire to; but have not had the privilege. This is the more reason you ought to maximize your higher education studies. Asides from studying well at all times, you should also pay attention to developing critical soft and hard work-place skills. These skills are useful while in school and most especially after graduation in a professional workplace environment.

Acquiring work-place skills as a student

One of such skills you should pay attention to, is developing your Problem-solving skill. You can read more about this in one of our previous posts. More so, you should try to learn at least one software package being used in the industry or typical work place environment of your profession. This will help you to be better prepared for work and give you edge over many of your peers. Employers always prefer those who were versatile with mainstream industry software packages as students.

High cost of premium software packages

However, if you have ever attempted purchasing a software before, you might have found that these software are very expensive. This makes premium software usage, a no go area for many students. And this might give you a concern since you’d probably spent a lot already on your tuition, accommodation and other fees. More importantly, you might not like to crack a premium or enterprise software for values or ethical reasons. If this describes your situation, you are not alone. I had a similar experience in school and I will like to show you a practical work-around.

Usually, many students resolve too easily into using a cracked version of the software. While this is not a best practice professionally speaking, it also raises questions on critical personal values and business ethics. To me, using a cracked version looks like a subtle fraud and should not be encouraged. Is there any way out?

Company provisions for Students accessing expensive software packages

A lot of software companies and industries understand that many students might not be able to afford their premium software packages. As a result, they make provisions in various capacities for verifiable students to have access to special versions of their software packages. While these versions may have some limitations or restrictions, they usually have adequate features and support for students or educators intending to use the software mainly for academic and learning purposes.

For instance, in my third year in school, I was able to get a student license to Autodesk software suite for civil engineers. The software package contained a total of eight software used by professionals at various stages of every civil engineering projects. I wasn’t interested in using a cracked version, so I reached out to their official website. After signing up, I was sent a link to download the whole Building Design Suite Ultimate 2016.

The total download package had a size of 44gb. I wasn’t able to download the package due to inconsistent internet network. So, I reached out to the Autodesk Support Service to explain the network challenge. To my utmost surprise, the support agent helped me divide the whole software package into about 7 different compressed files (approx 2gb each). This made the download process much easier. Thus, I was able to download and use the whole software suite on my personal system. The license allowed installed on two PCs and was valid as long as I remained a student. Here is a screenshot of the mail I sent to the support agent.

Company Requirements for accessing student license for software packages:

  • You must be currently be a student in an accredited institution
  • You must be able to verify your identity as a student at the acclaimed institution.

Student Verification Process

Most companies usually require students to register using their student mail address. This is different from free email account such as john@gmail.com or segun@yahoo.com. Assuming your school’s website is https:www.oauife.edu.ng; and your name is Johnson. Your student mail address is going to be johnson@oauife.edu.ng. Such email proves that you are a bonafide student of Obafemi Awolowo University.

Challenges students encounter in accessing premium software license

First, many schools might not provide email addresses to their students. When they do, they might not provide students with access to the email inbox. This makes it practically impossible for the students to access any mail sent to their inbox. One then wonders, what is the essence of giving an email address with inaccessible inbox to students?

Other companies only requires that the students scans and sends a copy of their identity card or any other official document proving that they are truly students of the acclaimed institution. If you find a reputable company requesting for any such document, please feel free to send. However, should you have any doubt, you can reach out to appropriate quarters for necessary clarifications.

Another challenge you might encounter is that the company might ask you to select your school from the list of approved schools. However, you might realize that your school is not among the list of approved schools. Ultimately, you find out that you are not opportune to benefit from such free licensed educational software packages or subsidized subscription services for students. If you find yourself in this shoe, please don’t be discouraged. Rather, keep on looking out for other opportunities including affordable alternatives to your desired software packages. Extra Tip: Search for Free and Open Source Software (FOSS), while attaching the name of the software in the search.

Summarily…

There is no total assurance that all companies provide or will provide student licenses for their software packages. However, more companies would likely be willing to offer (limited or restricted) access to students or disadvantaged individuals passionate about their learning and professional development for social good. Just be confident enough to contact company support in case you need help.

If you need help getting a student version of a software, please feel free to reach out in the comments section. I will try as much as I can to lend a helping hand. Meanwhile, you can check out our sister company; The Cirucmpsect. There, we help to connect students to industries. Ensure you fill out the form on the homepage of the site and we will get back to you soonest.

In closing, always remember that: everything is possible to him that believes. Do not have a mindset that you have to do things in the wrong way, just because that’s the norm in the society. Always strive to do your best, and the sky will be just the starting point on your journey to success.

Innocent Oyebode

I am a Civil Engineering graduate, Writer and Tech Enthusiast' with passion for Quality Education. I believe that we must do unto others, whatever we would like others do unto us.

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