Working Students Get Better Grades

Working Students Get Better Grades

Many parents are reluctant to require their students to work during their college years.  They don't want work to distract from the main task at hand--studying and maintaining a good grade point average. There are recent studies, including one published last year in Inside Higher  Ed , however, that contradicts this assumption.  The study concluded that the more money parent pay for their children's college expenses, the worse the children perform. According to a recent article in U.S. News  even students who…

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The Base Years Change Everything!

The Base Years Change Everything!

As a tax accountant and financial planner for over 25 years, on many occasions I have found that my usual tax and financial planning recommendations are significantly affected when I learn that my clients are approaching the base years for their college-bound children. (The base year is the calendar year immediately preceding the year in which their child will begin college.) Here are a few examples of the typical tax and financial questions I ask clients who do not have…

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Which Path Will Your Student’s ACT Tutor Take?

Which Path Will Your Student’s ACT Tutor Take?

Your ACT Tutor:  The Straight Shot or the Scenic Route? Whenever you or I embark on a trip, there are times when adding a few hours onto our travel times is a welcome trade-off for enjoying the view. Of course, there are other occasions when we just want to get our destinations as quickly as possible.  Such is the path your student should take with an ACT tutor. When trying to determine which route your ACT bound student should go,…

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How To Decline A College Acceptance

How To Decline a College Acceptance

You're Admitted--How to Tell Your Colleges "No Thanks" You've received lots of college acceptance letters and have made that perfect choice.  Now that you’ve decided on the college you DO want, how do you politely decline those other offers of admission?   The most courteous thing to do is contact the admissions counselors from the schools you are declining. When you extend that courtesy, it allows another student to fill your spot. A simple email would suffice. Just write a short email to each of…

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The Positive Side Of Federal Student Loans!

The Positive Side of Federal Student Loans!

Often parents tell me they want their students to graduate from college debt-free because they are aware of the large debt burden many students are carrying these days. These same parents, especially those who also don’t expect their children to get campus jobs, are also seriously underfunding their retirement accounts. Prioritizing your retirement funding over college funding doesn’t make you a bad parent. Many years from now your children will actually thank you for it when they don’t have to…

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Don’t Let College Costs Destroy Your Retirement

Don’t Let College Costs Destroy Your Retirement

I know this is the time of year when many of you are considering using some of your hard-earned retirement funds to pay for college and avoid student debt.  After all, the market has done quite well over the last three years, so why not? While it is true that most of what you read on this subject will agree that it is not a good idea to use retirement funds to cover college costs, these articles are not “ringing the…

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College Admissions: Looking Behind The Curtain

College Admissions: Looking Behind The Curtain

A blog by Rachael Fishman on the New American Foundation’s website entitled “The Dark Side of Enrollment Management" has created quite a storm in higher education. It has also angered a lot of parents. The article reported that George Washington University has been lying about its admissions practices for years. They have actually even admitted it. To make matters worse, other reporters on higher education are discovering that GWU’s deceptive practices are being emulated by many other private colleges across…

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IRS Code Sec 529 Plans Can Shrink Your Education Savings

IRS Code Sec 529 Plans Can Shrink Your Education Savings

Since many of you currently own or are planning to purchase an IRS Code Sec 529 plan, here are some important ownership, tax, distribution, ownership and investment issues which you need to be aware of: 1. Tax Issues Parents with sizable balances in their 529 Plans often make the serious mistake of paying the full amount of their qualified education expenses out of it. This could cause you to lose valuable tax deductions and/or tax credits. To qualify for the…

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