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The Student Debt Burden…Who is to Blame???

by Lawrene Bottorf

Who is to blame for the massive student loan debt? The first lesson to teach a college student is BEFORE college, and that is that we are all responsible for our OWN actions.

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Should You Wait Until Your Senior Year To Learn About Financial Aid?

by Tom Bottorf

Question: Our daughter’s high school counselor says there’s nothing we need to do regarding financial aid until her senior year. Is this correct? Answer: Unfortunately, this is what most school counselors say. They tend to focus on college admission requirements and SAT/ACT preparation, but they miss the College Funding element almost entirely. High schools (especially …

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401K Tax Strategies for College

Should I Increase My 401K Contribution To Get More Financial Aid?

by Tom Bottorf

Question: Our son is a junior in high school. I’ve heard that lowering the Adjusted Gross Income we declare on the FAFSA form should help our financial aid eligibility when he begins college. Is increasing my 401K contribution therefore a good strategy for getting more financial aid? Answer: NO! In fact increasing your 401K contributions …

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Student Loan Bubble… Worse than the Mortgage crisis?

by Lawrene Bottorf

WOW…the news just keeps getting worse. Yet the number of students we see from government schools who are completely ill prepared, not only academically, but financially continues to grow. National Center for Education Statistics • The growth of federal student loans outstanding in the past decade ($583 billion) is larger than the size of the …

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Quick Tips College Preparation Timeline and Tips for Juniors

Final College Lists Should Integrate EFC

by Tom Bottorf

Before a senior’s College List is complete, mom and dad SHOULD have a working knowledge of EFC (Expected Family Contribution) as well as the Financial Aid “Packaging Policies” of all the colleges under consideration. In fact, I’ll take it even a step further and suggest that… unless money is absolutely NO object whatsoever… understanding EFC and …

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The Numbers Are In: Unemployment for Many Professions At All Time High

by Lawrene Bottorf

Check The Numbers For those students who think they know what they want to do… please check to see if you will be able to put food on the table with your chosen field of study. For some professions, a 4-year degree is unnecessary. Many students are being admitted to grad school who are unlikely to …

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Summer College Enrichment Programs: Do they help??

by Lawrene Bottorf

We are often asked about the summer enrichment programs for students, as they relate to “getting the student into the college of choice”.

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Completion of 1st-Draft Essays… by WHEN?

by Tom Bottorf

When we work with high school sophomores and juniors, they’re often shocked when we tell them that we want them to complete ALL 1st-draft college applications AND essays by Labor Day of their senior year. This is contingent, of course, upon their College List being finalized by the end of their JUNIOR year. For those …

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