Planning

The Gap Year: Better Later Than Never

I’ve talked about the so-called “Gap Year” before. According to aptly named PlanetGapYear.com, a Gap Year is “a period of time when students take a break from formal education to travel, volunteer, study, intern, or work. A gap year is also referred to as a deferred year, year out, year off, time out, time off. ...

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Buyer’s Remorse: Daughter Said Yes to the Wrong College

Question: It is 4 weeks before college starts and my daughter feels she has made a mistake in her college choice. She was very torn with her decision and we feel she is right. She made a choice based on what she felt we wanted and what would be better financially for us as a ...

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Student Summers: Siestas or Stimulation?

Summertime and the livin’ is easy. Well, maybe not anymore, with the pressures of life — even for high school and college students — here in the year 2012. I remember how I used to look forward to summers when I was in elementary, middle, and high school. My warm-weather enthusiasm was somewhat less in ...

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College Life vs. Bank Fees

The tide of simple and cost-efficient college life is going out. Fast. Remember Gordon Gekko? Remember his signature line from the movie Wall Street? “Greed is good!” Well, his affirmation has manifested itself in almost a thousand colleges throughout the land when it comes to forcing their students to conform to their procedure for accessing ...

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College Cost Bubble Trouble

I’ve touched on this topic before, but the situation continues to get worse. Now, even the major mainstream media are becoming involved. Here’s Lawrence T. Lesick, vice president for enrollment management at Ohio Northern University, quoted in no less a source than the May 14, 2012 New York Times: “We know the model is not ...

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Should We Hire a Private College Counselor?

Question: Our friends have hired an independent college counselor to help their son maximize his Ivy League admission chances. My own son (a junior with a B/B- average) has a college list that is far more modest, but the guidance counselor at his high school is new and doesn’t seem very well informed. We are ...

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Picking Your Professors

Okay, seniors. Most of you who have applied to college have received your acceptances, denials, waitlistings, or deferred enrollment notices by now. The time has come to make your decision about where you will attend, come this fall. As entering first-year college students, you’ll have much to learn, and that will involve a lot of ...

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College Visits for High School Juniors

As the first day of spring arrives, anxious high school seniors hold their breath and await the verdicts from the colleges to which they have applied. Sometimes the arrival of the mail (either the “snail” or “e” version) can be a traumatic experience. I recall when my son received his tiny envelope from his Early ...

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Tending Your Spring Break Budget

Spring breaks are breaking all over the place. Some began earlier this month while others won’t begin until April. The beaches of America (and their residents) are braced for the onslaught of super-serious partying. As I heard one college junior say, “Leave no bar unvisited!” Sounds like fun, if you’re into that scene. However, more ...

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