Paying for College

/Paying for College
­

What I’m Reading This Week (ending June 9th)

  • What are the ramifications of an aging population around the world (Visual Capitalist
    infographic
    )? Among other elements, it has neat map showing percentage of population in each state over
    the age of 65: 
  • Hat tip to Hari (newest NGPF team member) for pointing out this article and interactive about robots taking over
    the workplace (Daily
    Mail
    ):

Researchers have warned that

What’s The Catch?: Student Loan Forgiveness Or…

What if you were a student loan borrower struggling to make your monthly payment and saw this ad pop up on your computer screen one day:

Or maybe this one: 

Student Loans: You Better Know What You’re Signing Up For!

As your seniors head off to college in the fall, you better arm them with the information they need to succeed financially during and after college. The biggest issue they will deal with in college: Student Loans. They will be required to go through an online “counseling” process which I would describe as “too little, too late” just before their loan is disbursed. I was trying to come up with a fun way (Ok, I might be stretching it here) to get them to review what in industry parlance is known as the “MPN” or Master Promissory Note for their student loans.  It is 7 printed pages long so rather than have them read straight through, how about a Scavenger Hunt where they will review the Note so they can complete this FAQ (frequently asked questions).  Each of the questions below can be answered within the note:

Question: What Are The New Interest Rates on Federal Student Loans?

Answer: 4.45% for federal direct student loans effective July 1, 2017 (up from 3.76% for 2016-17 school year).

Why the increase? Student loan interest rates are now tied to the 10 Year Treasury Bond interest rate.

From Bloomberg:

New undergraduate loans from the Department of Education are due to carry an interest rate of 4.45 percent, up from 3.76 percent for the academic year ending in June. Rates on some graduate loans are set to rise from 5.31 percent to 6 percent, while rates on loans to parents and guardians are due to experience a jump from 6.31 percent to 7 percent.

Question for students:

One Strategy to Keep College Costs Down: Graduate In 4 Years

As your seniors are heading out the door this spring to pursue higher education, this would be a valuable required reading.

“Six Reasons You May Not Graduate On Time (And What To Do About It)” From NYT:

Graduating from a four-year college in four years may sound like a fairly straightforward venture, but only 41 percent of students manage to do it.

That matters. The longer it takes, the less likely a student is to make it to graduation: A quarter of students drop out after four years, according to the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center, and most say it’s because of money. Cost, indeed, is a major issue for many families — in-state tuition and fees run $8,940 on average at public institutions, $28,308 at private ones. Many of those who finish in five or six years have either unnecessarily drained their parents’ bank accounts or end up in a lot more debt.

Yes, I know they will look at you and say, “But I plan on being one of the 41%!” But like Lake Wobegon, they can’t all be above average. So, have them identify what they think their risk factors are among these six:

By |May 2nd, 2017|Article, Current Events, Paying for College, Research|

Article: This Is One Case Where A PLUS Is Not So Positive

WSJ article out today warning of the dangers of Parent PLUS loans. I thought this was particularly pertinent as high school seniors pore over their financial aid award letters before making a May 1st decision. Here’s the lede:

Millions of U.S. parents have taken out loans from the government to help their children pay for college. Now a crushing bill is coming due. Hundreds of thousands have tumbled into delinquency and default. In the process, many have delayed retirement, put off health expenses and lost portions of Social Security checks and tax refunds to their lender, the federal government.

What makes this even more disconcerting is the financial aid “packaging” that often occurs where the PLUS loan becomes the

By |April 24th, 2017|Article, Current Events, Paying for College, Student Loans|

What Do High School Seniors Think About the Financial Aid Process?

It’s April so I thought I would do a temperature check for my AVID class just before we dove into an activity analyzing aid award packages. Here’s the word cloud that came from their individual responses (with some mentor comments sprinkled in which tended to be more on the positive side):

Screen Shot 2017-04-07 at 12.56.44 AM

Why did I do this?

From March Madness to April Anguish…

Yes, it’s that time of the year..thin envelopes, thick envelopes, cost of attendance, financial aid, subsidized loans, unsubsidized loans and the dreaded PLUS loan plug (for the uninitiated, the Parent PLUS loan is often the way that financial aid offices get their offers to balance out). Here are three activities from our Paying for College unit that I used recently with AVID students at Mountain View High School to lessen the anguish of this process and prepare them to analyze their own award letters: 

By |April 2nd, 2017|Activities, Current Events, Paying for College, Student Loans|