Jeannie’s writing and speaking helps parents set their kids up to graduate completely debt free and move directly into career they excel at and love. Her mission is to help students identify extraordinary goals and put together a road map to achieve those goals.
For example, a busy mother of a 10th grader will just fly to the chapter she needs right at that moment, note a few tasks that would be a good idea to do right then and not come back to the book for two months.
This episode of the podcast is a conversation with an experienced high school counselor, student athlete consultant and business owner, Sonya Duval of Achievement Matters Consulting. She talks in detail about her experience working with students, her passion of helping them become “student loan/college debt free”, scholarships and gives tips for the student athlete.
Top 5 Tips for the Student Athlete
Recruitment starts in the 9th grade for a student athlete (and even in middle school in some areas). Do well all four years of high school as well as on your SAT & ACT tests. Grades are very important in the college admission process. There is a difference in being looked at by coaches versus getting accepted into college.
Work on your athletic skills at the same time. Go beyond the everyday practice with the coach, put in the extra work to become stronger, better at the sport which shows your self-discipline.
Ask your student athlete what they want to do in terms of their career before the junior year (major).
Learn to NOT be a “REACTIVE” student athlete player. Instead, be PROACTIVE and seek out the schools and coaches that interest you. Don’t sit around waiting for someone to notice you.
Develop an EXPOSURE PLAN. This is a plan to get YOU in front of people who could potentially offer you an athletic scholarships. Put together a PACKAGE which contains your athletic profile, your letter of interest for that school and highlight film. This PACKAGE should be sent out in spring of their junior year (she gives an example of a email blitz of a student’s package to 70 coaches).
HELLO SENIORS! SUMMER IS HERE! What are you and your friends doing this summer? Are you maximizing your time to get ahead of the other seniors at the beach and prepare for the college admission madness? THIS IS THE ULTIMATE SUMMER GUIDE FOR SENIORS. Here is a general list of activities that we suggest your or your high school senior consider this summer:
Narrow down the college lists
Conduct your final college visits
Search for and secure that internship
Take another SAT/ACT practice test
Begin your college applications and essays
Are you considering early decision? THEN YOU MUST complete your applications NOW!
Consider observing someone you admire or that is a mentor in their job
Study all things college finances: FASFA, EFC, NET PRICE CALCULATOR, Compare costs of schools to see what your budget will allow
SEARCH FOR SCHOLARSHIPS NOW – DON’T WAIT!!!
Volunteer for more community service experience and opportunities to add to your “profile”
Tell us in the comments below what YOUR SENIOR is doing this summer!
Visit our new partners and help support this podcast!
It is graduation time, school is finishing up and are you wondering if your child has demonstrated leadership and excellence to become the schools newest citizen scholar? Does your child have the magic formula or profile?
The criteria is that the guidance counselors from each high school would nominate three students and the judges on the panel would make the final selections. The judges selected one person from each high school in Bucks County. There are about 34 students that are profiled in this insert section, each with a picture and summary of their background, accomplishments and future academic endeavors.
What we talk about in this podcast are the qualities, characteristics, behaviors that all (or most) of these students have that is noteworthy for students beginning their journey onward and upward. For example, many of the students:
Play one or more musical instruments
Participate in one or more school clubs or organizations
Have made community service a priority with consistent participation
Many are athletes that compete in different sports
All of excelled academically with a minimum GPA of 3.8+
And one student is in the JROTC program
High School can be really hard for some students. Those that excel find a way to get it all done. They are organized, passionate about what they do and focused on their goals of higher education. This is their time to explore different interests, showcase their talents & skills and find ways to give back to others. This is what makes for a great “profile” to college admissions and scholarship committees who are looking for well-rounded students that can handle challenges and have something to offer.
Have you considered taking a gap year? Today’s episode is a Q & A session with Mr. Thomas Holmes, a retired college financial aid administrator. We ask him several questions related to a student taking a gap year, how do alumni advocate for their students and what happens if a student loses their financial aid?
His responses to our questions provide insight into the mindset of college admission and financial aid administrators. He explains it from their perspective and gives you, the listener food for thought.
This episode is all about internships. We talk with an expert – Sharise Kent. She is the author of the book – The Internship Manual.
She talks extensively about her philosophy of how to “DO” college the correct way (i.e. get out in 4 years or less), use internships to design your career and dump the college debt.
Her journey includes having 6 internships as an undergrad student and 2 more as a graduate student. All of the above at the same time that you continue your studies and have fun.
Sharise talks at length about students being very deliberate in their approach to college and knowing how to play the game. For example, taking 15 credits instead of the standard 12 credits (as well as summer & winter sessions classes) will ensure that you graduate within 4 years but also saves you money.
When you first attend school, sometimes you have no idea what you want to study. Take the time the first year to explore topics. Changing your major choice more than once can be very costly (approximately $43k each time). The cost adds up in delayed graduation, additional tuition and lost employment.
There are a number of companies that have internships for freshman:
Scholarship Spotlight:Healthy Eating Scholarship – Sponsored by Nuts.com. They award three scholarships $500- $1500 to eligible high school seniors, undergrad or graduate students. Submit an essay. DEADLINE May 15, 2016.
This episode is a deep dive discussion about an online college degree and the value of this choice for your education. Our guest, Kimberly Wetter is the Marketing Director for SR Education Group and they publish the websites onlineu.org, guidetoonlineschool.com and grad reports.com.
We cover the whole gamut when talking about pursuing an online college degree, from financial aid, scholarships to lecture format to how they rate these colleges and universities.
We also discuss the differences between “for-profit” vs. “non-profit” colleges and the various types of accreditation. She provides some tips on how to distinguish which schools are a safe bet and which are “questionable”. Did you know that many well-known colleges have online degrees as well as brick & mortar buildings on campuses?
Here are a couple of universities that she mentions for you to consider – Western Governors University. Their concept revolves around the less time it takes you to complete your degree, the less money you have to spend.
Scholarship Spotlight – SR Education Group Scholarships – they offer two scholarships: $2500 for those attending community college (deadline July 16, 2016) & $5000 for teachers enrolled in a graduate program (deadline May 30, 2016)
Scholarship Spotlight – Babe Ruth League Scholarship – $1000 scholarship for high school seniors and current college students who have participated in a Cal Ripken Baseball, Babe Ruth Baseball or Babe Ruth Softball League during the ages of 4-18. Deadline July 31, 2016.
For current university, community college students and high school seniors in the US or Canada for the 2016-2017 school year who are interested in pursuing computer science or computer engineering degree. If you are a student from an underrepresented group in computer science (African American, Hispanic or American Indian. You will be required to attend Google Computer Science Summer Institute this summer 2016. Deadline March 3, 2016.
This is our first video on the College Money Maze Podcast (As a brother/sister dynamic duo, do you think we look alike?). We were experimenting with a new platform called ZOOM. Great for meetings, trainings, presentations, interviews, etc…
We have a special guest for this BONUS episode – Sia Knight, The College Savvy Coach. She is a former teacher, counselor, administrator turned entrepreneur (founder of The College Savvy Coach) and educational consultant. She brings us some “pearls of wisdom” about scholarship and college admission in general. She has a FREE webinar – SUPER SCHOLARSHIP WEBINAR on February 4th, 2016 8pm EST (check FACEBOOK page for additional dates). You can register HERE for the webinar.
We are very fortunate to have her as a guest. She gives us a sneak peak into the webinar and share some of those secrets with us such as how to maximize your HS counselor to your advantage, how to compose an application strategy for college and some of the biggest mistakes that lead to less money for college.
[spp-tweet tweet=”It’s not Who You Know, it’s really WHO KNOWS YOU!”]
Get to know your H.S. Counselor. When they need to recommend someone for a scholarship, let it be you.
Teach your child to be their own best advocate.
Start your child with an internship or leadership building activity in middle school or early high school.
Teach your student to foster relationships early with other volunteer organizations if you are not that academic super star (to leverage later for scholarships). An example would be Boys & Girls clubs, Urban League or youth groups of fraternal organizations.
How to be a GREAT student – Good isn’t good enough! Colleges are looking for GREAT students: Grades, References, Extracurricular, Avatar (online presence) & Test Score.
Take courses in high school that are rigorous enough to let colleges know you can handle challenging courses.
Get recommendations from school counselor and supplementary ones as needed.
Don’t rush senior year and load up on extracurricular activities. Plan for that earlier in high school.
Believe that college reps do look at your online (google, Facebook, instagram etc…) image!
Be aware of the upcoming changes to the SAT and ACT.
Today’s episode is with a retired Rutgers financial aid administrator who helps to debunk
college financial aid myths and gives valuable tips toward paying for college. Mr. Thomas Holmes retired from Rutgers University in 2010 and has started his own educational consulting business, Powerful Visions, LLC. This is somewhat longer than our usual episodes but well worth listening to from beginning to end.
Myth #1 Parents have to wait to file their taxes in order to complete the FAFSA.
WRONG. The FAFSA will be available beginning January 1, 2016 (and thereafter available as early as October) and you can use the previous years tax info to “estimate” what your tax liability will be.
Myth #2 You HAVE to take out a student loan to pay for college.
WRONG. An offer of a student loan can be part of the “financial aid award package” from the colleges that you apply for, especially if your need exceeds the cost of college admission (tuition + room/board/fees). You can actually turn down a student loan if you have secured enough money to meet your financial need from outside sources such as scholarships.
Thomas Holmes, Educational Consultant and CEO Powerful Visions, LLC.
$30,000 is the cost of college
$5,000 is your EFC (expected family contribution) subject from above =
$25,000 is your financial need
$20,000 is the max you may be offered from federal and institutional aid=
$5,000 is the amount you are short to meet the cost of college.
It is at this point you may be offered a subsidized loan (interest free until graduation)
Myth #3 I can’t or shouldn’t apply for financial aid because my grades are not that good. Grades are not a prerequisite for getting financial aid. They are important when maintaining credit and satisfactory progress while in college.
Myth #4 I can’t change how much financial aid that I am awarded.
WRONG (Sometimes). You have the ability to file an appeal with the school and have them reconsider the amount of aid that is awarded. They may not have any control over the “state aid” but given certain circumstances, may award you more federal or institutional aid.
Myth #5 We make too much money to get financial aid, plus it is too much of a hassle.
WRONG (Almost). Everyone is “probably” eligible for something even at higher incomes such as over $200k, depends on what kind of school you are applying to. The FAFSA is easier and simpler than ever to complete online.
Mr. Holmes’ tips for students/parents:
1. States may audit you and require additional info related to your assets before they award you financial aid.
2. Be smart about your assets, “[spp-tweet tweet=”if they can see, they will count it”.”]
3. Be aware of outside sources (scholarships) and how it will affect your award.
4. Start being intentional with your child’s academics and extra activities while they are in middle school to build up your “profile”.
5. Take your children on college tours while they are a freshman to get used to the concept.