What Are Hybrid Jobs and Why Do They Matter?

Hybrid jobs are multi-disciplinary, specialized roles that require a wide array of skills from different fields. For instance, digital marketing managers need to combine creativity with data analytics. Successful software engineers need design instincts in addition to their technical skills. Hybrid jobs are growing twice as fast as non-hybrid jobs and they pay 20-40% more, according to a 2019 report by Burning Glass Technologies, a job market analytics company.  In order to prepare themselves for future job market demands (and…

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What is EFC (and Why Does it Matter)?

EFC stands for expected family contribution. It’s the amount that the government and colleges calculate you should be able to pay out of pocket toward college costs. It's also used to calculate the amount of need-based financial aid students qualify for. Many families don’t know that they have some control over their EFC. By understanding how your expected family contribution is calculated and used by colleges, you can learn EFC-reducing strategies that can increase your student’s financial aid eligibility and…

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Scholarship Displacement

Third-Party Scholarships and Outside Scholarships: How to Find Them And What to Watch Out For

Once you’ve filed the FAFSA and are awaiting financial award letters from colleges, students should take some time to pursue what are commonly referred to as third-party scholarships, or money awarded from organizations other than the colleges themselves. Third-party scholarships, also known as outside scholarships or private scholarships, can help fill unmet need that's not covered by your financial aid package. However, it's important to check colleges' policies on outside scholarships because different schools treat them differently. Here's what you…

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Career Exploration for High School Students: 3 Steps to Follow

“What do you want to do when you grow up?” This is the age-old question many adults ask children as soon as they can talk and show interest in certain toys. This question tends to turn into “What are you going to major in?” when they get into high school. In my experience as a high school counselor, I’ve found that these questions (although well-intentioned) can be very daunting to students who are unsure of their career interests. They can…

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10 Coursera Data Science Courses, Specializations, Certificates and Degrees

In recent years, data science has become one of the most popular and profitable professions. What makes a career in data science so lucrative? Today, every industry uses data to maximize their revenue. Data scientists have the skills to help companies make data-driven decisions. As industries continue to become more and more data-driven, the need for data scientists continues to grow. Here are 10 Coursera data science courses, specializations, certificates and degree programs to consider. » Looking for other online courses?…

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7 Soft Skills Courses From Coursera

Even the most technically strong team needs “soft” skills like leadership, communication, and critical thinking in order to succeed — especially given the growth of so-called "hybrid jobs." Here are our recommendations of soft skills courses that can help prepare new college grads for the workplace: 1. The Science of Well-Being Yale University This personal development course is designed to help students understand how to increase their happiness and productivity—and then put it into practice. This 10-week course takes about…

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I’m a College Senior — Here’s What I Wish I’d Known Sooner

As a competitive travel soccer player, I started thinking about college early on. By the time I was a freshman in high school, I was already reaching out to coaches and going on campus visits.   I eventually chose Trinity Christian College in Palos Heights, Illinois. I fell in love with the environment and the soccer program. Most importantly, Trinity offered an athletic scholarship as well as an academic one.  Now, as a senior on track to graduate one semester early,…

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Merit-based Aid

5 Ways to Maximize Merit-Based Aid

Merit-based aid financial aid (typically scholarships) is financial aid that colleges give to students based on their grades and test scores. Maximizing merit-based financial aid is particularly important for middle-income families who don’t qualify for most of the need-based aid that’s available. Here are five ways to increase your student’s chances of qualifying for more merit-based financial aid. « Learn more about scholarships 1. Get good grades in college prep classes Having good grades (and a good grade point average)…

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Coronavirus Student Loan Scams: How to Spot and Avoid Them

For years, student loan scams have been tempting borrowers with empty or misleading promises that they can have their loans discharged or forgiven. These unscrupulous companies charge fees to enroll borrowers in free Department of Education programs and services including income-driven repayment plans, deferment and forbearance. Now, amid the coronavirus pandemic, a new crop of student loan scams have emerged. Their tactic is the same, except this time they're attempting to charge fees for the protections that are already afforded…

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How to Graduate College on Time: 8 Tips

We think of college as being a four-year commitment. But the reality is, most students take years longer than that to earn a bachelor’s degree. At four-year institutions, only 41% of students graduate with their bachelor’s degree in four years, according to data from the National Center for Education Statistics. At the same institutions, 60% of students complete the same degrees in six years, the data shows.  Between overwhelming degree options, enrollment in the wrong courses, completing too few credits…

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