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Old 12-29-2011, 04:59 PM
 
175 posts, read 244,773 times
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Bankrate.com has GREAT advice for any earnings level on how to save efficiently for college. However, I have found that the greatest thing you can do for your child's future education is spend the money that you would have saved for college on extracurriculars and classes that expand their learning and make it more possible for them to get needed scholarships (that far outweigh anything you could save).

Another thing is to get your children into the best public school district you can afford to live in. My two oldest are in a program that will allow them to have two years of college (a full associate's degree) completed by the time they finish high school. Two years college completed at no cost to us...just awesome!

Then of course, is Kalamazoo, Michigan. They have full-scholarships available for any child in the district who completes high school after having been in the district for four or more years (the less years, the less scholarship, however, it is applied AFTER all other financial aid and scholarships!) This is to any state-funded college in the state, which includes quite a few excellent colleges.

Just saying, your college savings could get creative, and possibly work better for your child and you in the end. Good Luck!
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Old 12-29-2011, 05:08 PM
 
Location: here
24,476 posts, read 28,773,973 times
Reputation: 31056
Quote:
Originally Posted by thebpseven View Post
Bankrate.com has GREAT advice for any earnings level on how to save efficiently for college. However, I have found that the greatest thing you can do for your child's future education is spend the money that you would have saved for college on extracurriculars and classes that expand their learning and make it more possible for them to get needed scholarships (that far outweigh anything you could save).

Another thing is to get your children into the best public school district you can afford to live in. My two oldest are in a program that will allow them to have two years of college (a full associate's degree) completed by the time they finish high school. Two years college completed at no cost to us...just awesome!

Then of course, is Kalamazoo, Michigan. They have full-scholarships available for any child in the district who completes high school after having been in the district for four or more years (the less years, the less scholarship, however, it is applied AFTER all other financial aid and scholarships!) This is to any state-funded college in the state, which includes quite a few excellent colleges.

Just saying, your college savings could get creative, and possibly work better for your child and you in the end. Good Luck!
I'm not sure I agree. Giving them experiences and opportunities to learn is good, of course. But there is no guarantee they'll get a scholarship. I'd hate to have spent all that time and money and not end up with a scholarship.
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Old 12-29-2011, 05:16 PM
 
175 posts, read 244,773 times
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I would hate to have my children study something in college that they think they want to do in life, only to enter that field, fail miserably, come back home, and ask me why I never got them music lessons (or something similar).

There is much to be said about life-learning that I feel has been thrown to the wayside for just tossing money at a problem like college tuition.


And while you are right, there are no guarantees for scholarships, the odds are MUCH greater of getting one if you can show you have a well-rounded education that shows to be a compliment to the college of their choice, rather than a limited in-school education.
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Old 12-29-2011, 06:02 PM
 
Location: Whoville....
25,393 posts, read 29,736,370 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thebpseven View Post
I would hate to have my children study something in college that they think they want to do in life, only to enter that field, fail miserably, come back home, and ask me why I never got them music lessons (or something similar).

There is much to be said about life-learning that I feel has been thrown to the wayside for just tossing money at a problem like college tuition.


And while you are right, there are no guarantees for scholarships, the odds are MUCH greater of getting one if you can show you have a well-rounded education that shows to be a compliment to the college of their choice, rather than a limited in-school education.
I got mine music lessons and she wants to know why we didn't save that money for college. She's naturally talented but has no desire to have a career in music. We parents cannot win here..

I've told her to go to college as a music minor that maybe she can win some scholarship money that way. Do they give out scholarships for piano? Fortunately, it looks like dd will maintain about a 3.8 GPA in high school. I'm hoping that's good enough.
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Old 12-29-2011, 06:28 PM
 
5,106 posts, read 6,075,701 times
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You sound like a good dad who wants the best for his children.

An approach here, tell your children from day 1 that they can do whatever they set their minds to if they put the necessary effort into it. tell them that education is the key to a good life and it is UP TO THEM to get that education. Encourage good study habits, sports, activities, skills, and talents. And let them find their way.

put your $ into retirement planning for yourself, your spouse, heck even the children if you want. They will thank you at 59 1/2.

child's assets count against the 'approved financial need' for scholarship calculations. (not talking sports, etc coz i don't know about that). Scholarships go first to the identified needy and you will be stuck with a stafford loan. In FAFSA parental income and support counts toward expected need until the student is 24? 26?

good luck
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Old 12-29-2011, 07:04 PM
 
144 posts, read 244,445 times
Reputation: 162
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bakeneko View Post
I think most finanical planners would agree that the Gerber plan isn't the best deal for most parents.

I know that you are really young so this isn't on your radar - but you really should only be worrying about funding your own retirement before funding her education. Sound selfish? The truth is that she will be able to get scholarships, financial aid and loans for her education..... none of those thing exist for retirement!
+1 on that . Definitely take care of your kids best you can, But you gotta make sure you look after your own future as well. Put back what you can for collage, and let your DD help take care of the rest.
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Old 12-29-2011, 07:49 PM
 
Location: BK All Day
4,480 posts, read 8,327,999 times
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Ohio, don't you work at a bank? Why not ask around your Job...
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Old 12-30-2011, 08:15 AM
 
20,793 posts, read 52,433,355 times
Reputation: 10476
Quote:
Originally Posted by thebpseven View Post
Bankrate.com has GREAT advice for any earnings level on how to save efficiently for college. However, I have found that the greatest thing you can do for your child's future education is spend the money that you would have saved for college on extracurriculars and classes that expand their learning and make it more possible for them to get needed scholarships (that far outweigh anything you could save).

Another thing is to get your children into the best public school district you can afford to live in. My two oldest are in a program that will allow them to have two years of college (a full associate's degree) completed by the time they finish high school. Two years college completed at no cost to us...just awesome!

Then of course, is Kalamazoo, Michigan. They have full-scholarships available for any child in the district who completes high school after having been in the district for four or more years (the less years, the less scholarship, however, it is applied AFTER all other financial aid and scholarships!) This is to any state-funded college in the state, which includes quite a few excellent colleges.

Just saying, your college savings could get creative, and possibly work better for your child and you in the end. Good Luck!
In MI, the CC classes transfer to a state school but don't count on them transferring out of state or to any private school. It's a nice option to have if you know your child is going to an instate school, but don't bank on being able to use those credits. Most states have a similar plan available, our state the classes are run through the University, not through community colleges, even with full university credits they don't always transfer. We are in the college selection process right now and we have heard this from pretty much every single admissions counselor we have talked to. Some credits MIGHT transfer and that is the best they can give us. Most of the schools we have talked to do NOT take credits in the students intended major however.

As for getting scholarships for extracurriculars, don't bank on that AT ALL. The chances of getting a full ride scholarship for anything is basically zero. IF your child has the natural talent to be competitive in a sport, in music, etc. the most you can usually hope for is a 1/2 scholarship--which still helps but it is very rare to get a real full ride scholarship, especially for women. Some sports, like golf, are easier to get scholarships in, but the are almost never full rides. Our DD is a top golfer so we are also going through this with her along with the college selection process.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ivorytickler View Post
I got mine music lessons and she wants to know why we didn't save that money for college. She's naturally talented but has no desire to have a career in music. We parents cannot win here..

I've told her to go to college as a music minor that maybe she can win some scholarship money that way. Do they give out scholarships for piano? Fortunately, it looks like dd will maintain about a 3.8 GPA in high school. I'm hoping that's good enough.
Many smaller, especially private schools, have music scholarships for non-music majors. At one school our DD is looking at they have offered her a $4000/year scholarship (and pretty much any student that chooses that school from certain band programs in our state, but not all). One school in our state is offering a full-ride scholarships for non-music majors that participate in their fine arts program (students from our state only). It can be done but there is a lot of competition for that money too. We have a nationally recognized band program at our high school and some incredible musicians. In the past 6 years, not one single kid from our band program has been offered a full ride anywhere. The school I mentioned above that is giving out the full rides just started those because they want to increase their fine arts department. Now, many of the kids have gotten sizable scholarships, especially those going into music performance, again, it helps.
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Old 12-30-2011, 08:40 AM
 
1,067 posts, read 1,378,608 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ohiogirl22 View Post
Ohio, don't you work at a bank? Why not ask around your Job...

I did, but though I may disagree with some if not most of you guys on here at times I really value everyone's opinons and wanted to make sure I was taking the right steps.

When I asked at work they said to open a cd but I dont know if I like that idea. You cant add money to a cd so it's a good way to earn interest but not really save.
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Old 12-30-2011, 08:42 AM
 
1,067 posts, read 1,378,608 times
Reputation: 1070
Quote:
Originally Posted by theoldnorthstate View Post
You sound like a good dad who wants the best for his children.

An approach here, tell your children from day 1 that they can do whatever they set their minds to if they put the necessary effort into it. tell them that education is the key to a good life and it is UP TO THEM to get that education. Encourage good study habits, sports, activities, skills, and talents. And let them find their way.

put your $ into retirement planning for yourself, your spouse, heck even the children if you want. They will thank you at 59 1/2.

child's assets count against the 'approved financial need' for scholarship calculations. (not talking sports, etc coz i don't know about that). Scholarships go first to the identified needy and you will be stuck with a stafford loan. In FAFSA parental income and support counts toward expected need until the student is 24? 26?

good luck
I'm a woman. . But your right about the parents income, you have to be 25 have a child or be married to not have your parents income count. Sucks.
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