Viewing entries tagged
financial aid


April - Why I have a love/hate relationship with this month.

Many students are finding out across the country if they have been accepted into the college of their dreams. Also, they see if the awards and scholarships from these colleges will make those dreams a reality. If the average family needs to spend $60-$70K a year to go to a college, they are not going. They can't. This is why April is so important to many students. It is time for reality to sink-in. The fact of the matter is that college has never been more expensive. So how did our families do? I want to thank Al Hoffman from the College Funding Service Center for teaching me that this time of year is a double-edged sword. On one end of the sword, we share with the family's successes. On the other end, we can only reflect on the results of when a family stops listening.

The families that are enjoying success listened to the research and accepted our guidance. They found the schools that were an academic fit. They found the schools that placed an emphasis on academics and timely graduation. They found the schools that have a history of awarding their students with grants and scholarships. When these families considered all of the possible options, they were left with nothing but great choices. They also discovered a roadmap to cover the costs of these colleges. They followed our financial recommendations so the money would be there when they needed it.  It's very satisfying to see many $50K-$70K a year colleges come down to in-state pricing.

Tomorrow, I am meeting with a family that did not follow our process and we need to figure out how they are going to finance a 6-year education at a cost of $300K. That's the cost of three educations for one student. This student was accepted to 1 of only 2 colleges where they applied. I honestly do not know how this family is going to pay for this. There is always a small fraction of the families that work with us but eventually ignore the guidance and research we provide. Instead, they develop a criteria of school selection that was more focused on the college's athletic team and social reputation. Some of the times it's a boyfriend or a girlfriend that can inflluence college choices. In the end, these families often find themselves with few viable alternatives. Maybe this blog will reach out to more families and help them understand that college can be expensive and can potentially destroy a family financially. Maybe more families will take a little more time before they consider their college choices.