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Educational Consultants
1001 Ogden Ave.
Suite 204
Downers Grove, IL

Financial Consultants
1717 North Naper Blvd
Suite 200
Naperville, IL

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Income Share Agreements: Better than Loans?

For families struggling for a way to pay for college without saddling themselves or their children with decades of debt, Purdue University in West Lafayette, Ind., is offering a new option—the Income Share Agreement. Already in use in countries outside of North America, Income Share Agreements  (ISA) are beginning to take hold in the United States, with Purdue’s Back A Boiler program (referencing its team nickname, the Boilermakers) among the first. With an ISA, students receive money up front for their college education. But this…

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Smart Sophomores Make College Visits

If you want to get a step ahead in your college application, then you're being really smart to make some college visits this summer.  Even"rising" high school sophomores, and certainly rising juniors can take a lot of stress off their college decisions by starting now. Here are 4 ways to check out your "smart quotient": 1. You See College As an Adventure Some kids want to go where all their friends are going, and that might sound pretty comfortable at age 15.…

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Balancing Student Loan Debt with Retirement Savings

Welcome to post-graduate life and, with any luck, professional success. Once you’ve bridged the chasm between what you want to do with your new disposable income and what you think you should do, you will find yourself with some life-impacting decisions. Should you put your efforts towards saving for retirement or would they be better allocated to the expedient repayment of student loans? Wanting to make smart decisions with your money is only the first step. A decision made with the most prudent of intentions…

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Digital Badges in Education Improving Job Prospects

  Ever worry you’re not telling your full story when applying for jobs?  Your resume shows your work history and the degree you may have earned, but what about all the skills you’ve amassed along the way? And what about your rich variety of experiences that have taught you so much?  Old-school resumes simply don’t leave much room for that type of multi-dimensional information. For everyone who’s ever wished there were a way to display achievements like new skills acquired or milestones reached, there’s…

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PSLF Public Student Loan Forgiveness

REPAYE: New Student Loan Forgiveness Program

Federal student loans are some of the most forgiving and debtor-friendly loans that you are likely to come across. In spite (or arguably because) of this, student loan repayment has declined considerably over the years. In an effort to combat the problem, the Federal government has instituted plans to make repayment even easier. Student Loan Forgiveness Program PAYE In an attempt to curtail the rise of borrowers failing to repay their loans, the Federal Government created student loan forgiveness programs to aid and incentivize borrowers…

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Writing Winning Scholarship Essays

By Guest Blogger Audrey Jenkins Audrey Jenkins is a skilled freelance blogger covering a range of topics from careers to travel and leisure, along with everything in-between. Writing Winning Scholarship Essays The scholarship application process can be a headache in and of itself, so the last thing you want to see in addition to an application form is an essay prompt. Instead of viewing scholarship essays as a hassle, think of them as an opportunity to set yourself apart. After…

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Savvy College Funding

It’s no secret that most Americans find college to be an expensive venture. Even with years of planning and saving, families who can pay the full cost of a four year education out-of-pocket are the minority. Since it’s unlikely that most people have hundreds of thousands of dollars lying around, there are some tried and true methods to pay for an education. The best options require diligence and foresight. However, you shouldn't overlook alternative and creative college funding options. Common College Funding Options Outside Scholarships One…

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What the New Fiduciary Responsibility Law Means

When you meet with a financial advisor, you hope that you have found someone you can trust. There is a new fiduciary responsibility law on the table in Washington, because some advisors are, unfortunately, not trustworthy. They may not have your best interest in mind when recommending certain financial products and that may affect your family's college savings. Are you wondering what this new law means for you? It will affect how financial advisors recommend different investments and how they charge their…

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Balancing Your Tuition and Retirement Savings

If you’re working to pay your child’s tuition, retirement might be the last thing on your mind. With a six-digit tuition hanging over your head, it’s easy to put your savings on the back burner. But it would be a mistake to put off these contributions, because the power of compound interest is still working hard on your contributions. If you put off investments for just a few years, you’re potentially losing out on tens of thousands of dollars. Never sacrifice your retirement to…

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Navigate FAFSA Verification Like a Pro

Have you been chosen for FAFSA verification? Not to worry! According to U.S. News, over one-third of FAFSA applicants are chosen for this type of audit. Some small colleges even elect to verify 100% of their applicants. As deadlines have passed and you have filed your FAFSA, now comes the time when financial aid offices may be contacting you or your student about the verification process. Essentially, it’s an audit that colleges do to verify the numbers you submitted in your original filing. While this…

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