What most people do is visit in-state public as well as other schools where the campus fits or the prestige of the university appeals to them. But doing so without knowing what a particular school will co$t YOUR STUDENT or knowing your budget can leave students falling in love with a school they ultimately can’t afford. If they go ahead apply and are admitted, this leaves the student at risk for taking on significant debt at a school they really can’t afford without affordable and reputable options in the senior year. If you want to avoid the pit of debt, take these steps in visiting colleges.
One of LEAP’s goals is to prevent families from stepping on to campuses they can’t afford or doesn’t offer their major. John almost made a mistake on the first part.
Spring break was fast approaching, and John’s family planned to use the time for college visits. To assist in finalizing his schools to visit (he already had a start on his list), John and his parents attended LEAP’s College Selection Seminar. During the seminar, we uncovered for families the data that matters in choosing colleges and where to find it for FREE!
As a result, John’s family realized at least two of the schools on his list would break the bank. While John could likely be admitted to ALL of the schools they planned to visit, there were at least two where he is assured of little to no merit scholarships. Even though he’s academically talented, all of the students admitted to those two schools are as well.
What did John’s family do to realize they shouldn’t visit those schools where he’d assuredly fall in love (if I told you the names of the schools, you’d know most fall in love with these!)?
- On our advice, they met with their financial planner to determine college budget for not one, but both of their students. See they’ll have two in undergrad for at least two years overlapping. This needs to be accounted for.
- They found out what they can expect to spend on graduate school…..which was a lot.
- They learned through our seminar how to rather accurately calculate what each school would likely cost John to attend.
After taking these steps, mom contacted me in a panic, “I don’t think we can afford (those two schools).” Fortunately, they realized this before wasting time & money on the visits and risking John falling in love then living in debt upon graduation and not being able to afford graduate school (where he will most assuredly have some debt). What did they do to revise their journey?
- Using the resources LEAP pointed them to, they found schools where John is at or above the 75th percentile and likely to get significant merit aid bringing school the cost of school to well under the averages and in some cases tuition free for him.
- They made certain these schools were recognized as reputable for John’s undergrad major and future career goals.
If you want to avoid unnecessary college debt and still find a reputable best fit college, join us at College Selection Seminar the next time it’s offered.