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Discussion Starter #1
I have seen several people on here say their children will soon be going off to college.

Would love to talk about the college application process, scholarship search, questions when touring campuses, etc.

Just general - how are you dealing with it all.
 

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We've just begun all of this. My DD went to the college in the next town where she wants to go and took a tour. I think it kind of scared her. She just got her SAT scores back. We are just beginning to fill our application and scolarship forms. I am pretty much lost with all of this.
 

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As far as $$$ goes, start early! Try to get as many scholarships as possible! It is already costing a lot and our DS hasn't even started. His 1st semester starts this fall. Try to find as much as you can. there are books at the library that have everything under the sun (thousands!)
Do this NOW!!!
 

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I know I'm not a parent of a college student, but ... having just graduated college and currently being a grad student I'd be happy to help out with anyone's questions. I went to school on scholarships and grants, dealt on my own with SATs, FAFSAs, applications, other financial aid, etc.
 

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My daughter will be going to college the fall of 2008. We've already started working on scholarships, etc. There were some available to Juniors, and she's applied for those. She's taking some classes at the community college already, taking as many HS classes that will count as college credits (have to pay some $$ for her to take the AP test).
 

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Well to fill out federal aid forms got to www.fafsa.org this is a tedious application so have all the information handy when your ready.

There are also other websites that can help your child apply for scholarships/grants, etc... some require essays to be written and other stuff like that. Do a search on google for college scholarships it should bring up a ton of results.

Good Luck!
 

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*sigh* any help with this process, acidcookie would be greatly appreciated.

DD18 was accepted by the local university (Rowan) and the Fafsa has been filed. I just got a letter back from Rowan today telling us she qualified for subsidized loans and the work study program, which is awesome but I'm not sure what all that means.
 

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Subsidized loans are the ones where the federal gov't guarantees it (so they don't have to already have a credit rating) and the interest is typically very low and doesn't start accruing until they quit/finish college. Work study means they are eligible to apply for jobs on campus that the government provides funding for (the majority of student jobs on campus) - which does NOT mean they are guaranteed a job, nor that they will get one that they like. It just means that other students CANNOT apply for those. I did everything from waitressing to research to writing programs to perform very detailed statistical calculations as a work study. My sister was a dispatcher for the campus police (good position - paid well and was fairly inactive so it was ok to study while you waited for the phone to ring).
 

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Ods will be going to college in the fall. He will be attending Winona State University. They have already awarded him a $10,000 scholarship ($2,500 over 4 years. Its their Presidential Honors Scholarship. He interviewed with them this past Tuesday for their Foundation Scholarship which is a $16,000 scholarship, $4,000 a yr for 4 yrs. We are so hoping he gets this.
We filled out the FAFSA in January. We are military and according to them we can afford to pay $11,000 a yr of ods college expenses. Maybe if we shut off all the utilities and eat only every third day.
Anyway he has applied for lots of scholarships and is applying for more too. We know we will have to take out some kind of loans but we are determined this kid will go to college. He will be doing a double major of Computer Science and Mathmatics.
 

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We filled out the FAFSA in January. We are military and according to them we can afford to pay $11,000 a yr of ods college expenses. Maybe if we shut off all the utilities and eat only every third day.
Ha! I was always boggled too by what they considered available funds for college. Exactly, maybe if my mom didn't eat, bathe, or want to stay warm.
 

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My daughter will start Truman State University this fall; we are really slow to file our FAFSA (on paper on financial picture is good), but she did receive a merit scholarship of $2500/yr. We toured several schools, and she was pretty "meh" about all of them, but Truman was a fit for her right away. I am excited and scared at the same time!

My son will start college in Fall, 2008. He will take his ACT next Saturday. He tagged along on some of the visits with his sister, but he has different criteria than she does.

I am getting REALLY close to an empty nest :weeping: .
 

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Our 13 year old took the real ACT (not the practice one) when she was 11 and scored a 25. She has already been accepted to a university here that has a dual enrollment program for more advanced students. She is still homeschooled but she also attends the university. The class (or classes) count for both her college and high school credit. They offer each student under the dual enrollment program one class per semester at a GREATLY reduced rate of $90. The classes are normally $1200 each for instate residents. Dual enrollment students can take as many classes as they can handle, but only one per semester at the reduced rate, all of the rest are $1200 each. DD will be able to get 3 classes a year in for the next 4 years at the reduced rate....$14,400 worth of classes for less than $1100. She will already have her first 12 college classes under her belt when she graduates from high school.

She will continue to take the ACT each year to better her score and hopefuly qualify for scholarships. Her IQ is in the top 2%. She is very motivated and well rounded with her community service, volunteer work, and grades.

Whatever scholarships do not cover, Dh and I will take care of 100%. We will do the same for DS when the time comes.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
My son will be going to college in the Fall '08. Right now based on grades and SAT scores he qualifies for full tution scholarships at most of the state universities. At one, he qualifies for a "full ride". But we are not sure that we want him to go to a big university - so we are looking at a few private schools in NC. The problem with the private schools is that he won't get his "state money" from our state which will total nearly $28000 and these schools are very competitive so at the state universities he will be one of the top at the private schools he is just one of the MANY at the top.

We are in our search right now - so if anyone knows about the private schools in NC - I would love to hear.

We have a college fund of $50,000 but we are hoping that this money will go to graduate school or law school.

Unfortunately, or really I guess fortunately since we have a good income, we don't qualify for need based funding. I am totally against school loans if there is anyway we can swing it.

I look forward to hearing how you all progress through the process.
 

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I have one in undergrad at Dartmouth and another who graduated from Boston College and is now has to decide on Harvard, BC or Brown for grad school. Each giving a good package. Thank goodness they were both awarded huge academic scholarships and were National Merit Scholars. That was like hitting the lotto. Remember any scholarship money your child gets is subtracted from the amount of financial aid given. So try to get scholarships in the amount of entire tuition. Many people are under the impression that they get X amount of dollars for financial aid then can pay the rest of the bill with scholarships. Unfortunately it doesn't work that way. I worked many years in the admissions office at a large university in Boston and that was one of the biggest misconceptions. Also you get the same amount of financial aid if you apply to a state school, private or Ivy league. HTH
 

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Emily finishes her freshman year at Texas Tech May 9th.

These are OUR experiences and may vary for you and your students school!

Our Fafsa for next year is filled out and I have her tuition waiver from the state ready to present next Fall. She keeps in touch with rehab (she is hearing impaired) so they will continue to pay for her books.

She is leaving the standard 2 bed per room bathroom in the hall dorm for a 4 bedroom, 2 bath, kitchen, livingroom suite. It will cost more but much cheaper than an apartment and safer too!

If you decide to do something like this(change dorm rooms that is a major upgrade) be ready to pull about $800 out of the wazoo around january/february to HOLD the room.

We spent a fortune on her "stuff" last year. Microwave, tv, laptop, printer, mini fridge, towels, sheets, comfort,school supplies,h b and A's, storage and etc etc....there are lists online as well as college bundles if your child is willing.

Shop early, shop the sales, and if you can, layaway now!

Take the tours! They have seminars and checklists for parents. If you have not done something or done it wrong, this is when you fix it!

Remember college is 60% first semester and 40% second semester. It is not halfsies.

Make sure you sign up for parents online to pay her bill and to even view it as well as her grades on whatever school website your student plans to attend.

Make sure your student signs the paper that ALLOWS you assess to this info! You do NOT want to have 2 days to pay your bill only to find out you can't.

Make sure you have all your tax info before you go to fill out the fafsa. Keep your PIN and your student's. You will need it every year!

If you don't choose a meal plan before the deadline one WILL BE CHOSEN FOR YOU! It can get expensive that way.

Remember that first semester meal bucks roll over to the second semester but once the second semester is over you lose what is left. If your student eats 2 meals a day, don't pay for 3.

If possible try to open an account with a branch in your city and your childs city. You can just deposit the money in the account right there in your town and not have to mail a check! We didn't have this as there are no 2 banks alike for us.

I keep all info in 2 folders. Keep all your students info SSN, drivers lic number,copy of car insurance policy,the fafsa PIN as well as yours,etc all together. If you have to call the school it just makes life easier.

That is all I have right now.
 

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I have two going in fall of 2008. I didn't go to college, I went to a technical school and I am a wreck over the whole process. I am concerned about money and if we will get any help financially. They are taking the SATs in June. We are meeting with a financial advisor who specializes in this and he is very very reasonable and comes highly recommended.
 

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3 going and a soon to be fourth

My oldest daughter soon to be 24 did not like my restrictions on her partying while attending college. So I told her I wouldn't pay until she was serious about it.After taking a few years off she is back in College for a Biology degree and also taking tech school to train in what I do. My second daughter graduated early from her 4 year degree, she finished in 2years and 2 quarters. She went summers and took over 20 units at a time. I am also paying for her to go to tech school for what I do. as it is more flexible time wise than her major and the pay is better. My son just started UC Irvine. He could have had many free or partial scholarships to other colleges Carnegie,UNLV and some all over the country were interested in him, but he wanted UC Irvine. He was injured a couple weeks before tryouts so no soccer scholarship even though he still has a chance they asked him to come back and try out again in Jan.He wants to be a vet. He did get high placement for all the AP classes he had in High School.He had a high GPA and great SAT. No financial aid for anyone as we make to much money. I did get him $500 scholarship from my credit union, but that is about it. 27k a year from my pocket just for him. We did order My second daughters books on line thru amazon , so we saved a bundle on books that way.
 

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There is an article in this months Good Housekeeping magazine about paying for college. Lists some websites with grant and scholarship info.
Subsidized loans are need based loans and the interest is paid by the government while the student is in school.
Unsubsidized loans are for anyone, and you pay the interest. There is an option to pay interest while in school or wait till done. The interest is the same as a subsidized loan.
The federal stafford loans don't do credit checks, student loans through private lenders do them.
I don't know if all states have something similar to this. But in NC there is a college foundation; (cfnc.org) this site explains the different types of loans, has links for grants and scholarships, college test prep, and you can take virtual tours of schools in NC.
 

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Here in Virginia, if you are a resident and your child goes to a private college, they get a tuition assistance grant every year (the amount changes each year but it's usually $2000+) to help offset the costs. Be sure to see if your state offers something similar.

My DS went to a state school and DD went private. Between her scholarships and grants, we paid the same as if she went to a state school.

DD is in grad school now on total loans but it's a state school and reasonable as far as higher education goes.
 
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