Ep. 56 Colleges that Meet 100% Financial Need

Financial need picToday’s episode is a discussion about “financial need” and the colleges that meet that for you. This term means different things to different people.  To you, it may mean the total amount you will be responsible for in terms of college costs or expenses. To a college or university, financial need means the balance left after your EFC (expected family contribution) has been applied against the NET PRICE.

We call it – “THE GAP”.

Having a basic understanding of how colleges arrive at your need is critical.  Here are the formulas that are important to note:

TUITION + ROOM/BOARD + FEES= NET PRICE

NET PRICE – EFC (Expected Family Contribution)= FINANCIAL NEED

The blog – College Greenlight – has a list of the college that I mention in this episode that meet financial need.

Links mentioned in this episode:

College Greenlight @cggreenlight

FAFSA

Net Price Calculator

SAT Test Dates

ACT Test Dates

U.S. Dept. of Education College Affordability & Transparency Center

College Tennis Scholarship Stats

Related Episodes:

E. 52 The College Money Puzzle Part. 1: EFC & Net Price Calculator

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Ep. 52 The College Money Puzzle Part 1: EFC & Net Price Calculator

The College Money Puzz;e 1The College Money “PUZZLE” consists of four pieces – EFC (expected family contribution), Net Price Calculator, Financial Aid and Scholarships that when used “strategically” can help you figure out how to pay for college. This begins our two-part series to talk in depth about these pieces of the puzzle that are uniquely intertwined and interconnected. We will begin with Expected Family Contribution and Net Price Calculator.

 According to this January 31, 2014 Forbes article by Tony Onink, you
can have a household income up to $425,000 and still qualify for some financial aid.
  It is just a matter of the number of dependents and type of school that you apply to, either public/private as well as two-year vs four-year college or university.

In this episode, we discuss why you should know your EFC (expected family contribution) and use the Net Price Calculator to find out the “true cost” of the college that you are looking at.  Every college and university has some sort of calculator on their website, you just have to find it.  They don’t really want you to know what it will cost.  The “real cost” consists of tuition + room & board+ fees – EFC- Merit Aid/scholarships= balance or gap.  This gap is what you have to be worried about.

Your EFC will usually not change from year to year.  If you have more than one child in college, your EFC is split between the children.  That is a good thing because you will likely receive more financial aid as a result.  Stay tuned for Part 2 next week: Scholarships & Financial Aid.

Links mentioned in this episode:

Ep. 25 FAFSA Pt. 1: Getting Organized

Ep. 26 FAFSA Pt. 2: EFC & CSS

Net Price Calculator

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ACT Registration

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Ep. 20 Road Trip: Philadelphia College Fair

This episode is a recap/debrief of our recent road trip to the College Fair in Philadelphia.  The college fair is sponsored by NACAC – National Association of College Admission Counselors. They have a complete listing of college fairs across the country for the fall and spring season every year.  This was my first experience and my brother’s second with his family. There were well over 800 colleges in attendance at the Pennsylvania Convention Center.College Fair

I try to describe it for you but you must attend one local to you atlas 2-3 times between sophomore and senior year of high school. The first time attending a college fair with a sophomore (or younger) is just to get them used to the concept.  The second time you attend with your child should be between 10th and 11th grade.  They most likely have more of a focus or an idea of what they want to major in. If they are interested in sports, they will be attracted to those schools and teams that they have heard and/or seen on TV.  By senior year, they will be laser focused when attending and only visit the top 5-10 schools of their choice and spending more quality time with the admissions person to show their genuine interest.

There is a lot of literature, brochures, cool stuff that they give away.  The schools that caught our interest were:

Rutgers (of course!)

Arcadia University

Virginia Tech

Rowan University

We also discuss the various workshops that we each attended.  There were representatives from the Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency (PHEAA).  They answered questions about financial aid, FAFSA, scholarships etc…

Other financial aid resources:

FAFSA.gov

studentaid.ed.gov

StudentLoans.gov

FAFSA4caster.ed.gov

collegecost.ed.gov

nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator

Scholarship resources:

EducationPlanner.org

FinAid.org

fastweb.com

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Ep. 14 When & HOW to Start Saving for College?

 

Saving for College

Saving for College

In today’s interview, we talk with Felicia Gopaul, a certified financial planner, about when and how to start saving for college. We discuss saving vehicles or instruments such as 529 Plans as well as other funding resources.

Ms. Gopaul talks about how traditional financial planners might be familiar with saving for college but don’t usually have the expertise in college admission and many are retiring themselves.  Find someone who has taken additional training to gain specific knowledge and experience in this area.

She talks in great detail about 529 plans, stresses the importance of saving for college and gives these tips:

  1. Ensure that when you withdraw the funds that you are using the monies for necessary expenses such as tuition, books, computer etc… or face the possibility of a 10% penalty;
  2. Ask you tax professional about other education deductions or download the IRS Publication #970;
  3. Although the 529 plans are made payable to the student, anyone can start a 529 plan;
  4. If you are a grandparent who started a 529 plan and don’t use the funds for necessary expenses, the income can be viewed as a “gift” to the child and may hurt their chances for financial aid.
  5. In order to minimize the impact, it is all about the timing.  If you are someone other than the child’s parent, pay for the last year of college.
  6. It also depends on what type of school the child is applying to.  Some colleges require additional information about assets of other family members on the CSS Profile (which is in addition to the FASFA form).

[spp-tweet tweet=”If you don’t Save it, you will have to BORROW it!”]

Felicia has two podcasts: The College Experts Talk Podcast and Career 100 Podcast.  She leaves us with a few words of wisdom for those students and parents looking for scholarships for college:

  • Start looking early, such as junior year;
  • Look for scholarships like it’s your job;
  • Use the net price calculator on each school’s website or a universal one – CLICK HERE;
  • Start having the conversation with your child about what you can actually afford before they start looking at colleges.

[spp-tweet tweet=”Look for Scholarships like it’s your JOB!”]

How to contact Felecia Gopaul:

Twitter – @FeliciaGopaul

Linked In Profile

Facebook Page – College Funding Resources

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Ep. 8 Have You Calculated ALL Your College Costs?

College Costs

 

This is the first of many conversations that we will have on the subject of college costs. We define common terms as well as give real-time examples from specific institutions about “hidden” college costs.

We also talk briefly about what you may bring with you as a first-year student and what expenses to watch out for. The sample schools that we discuss are:

Kean University Net Price Calculator

Penn State University

Rutgers University Office of Financial Aide

Seton Hall University

Other Links:

College Board’s Net Price Calculator

U.S. Department of Education Net Price Calculator Center

U.S. New & World Report Net Price Calculator

Federal Student Aid – U.S. Department of Education (Expected Family Contribution)

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