If you cannot pay cash, then I would consider going to a public library or community center until you can afford one. The other option would be to get a job or try to pick up more hours and save for a computer.
Also please be careful with your "school checks", do you know where this funding is coming from, it is extra loans? Dont' forget to borrow responsibly.
I am a financial aid professional and I have started a financial aid blog as a project for a college course. Please check out the link below to read more of my insights into financial aid which you may find extremely helpful.http://financialaidwritings.blogspot.com/