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When do you pay college costs?

I’d put this question on my top 10 list of frequently-asked questions. When are college costs actually due, and how do you pay them? Is that actually two questions? Your first college payment is the deposit which is paid when you accept admission on or before May 1. Usually this is a nominal (relative to college costs) amount, typically ranging…

Choosing a College, Sight Unseen

I would imagine that for many graduating seniors, one of the trickiest aspects of deciding which college to attend is that students have few, if any, opportunities to set foot on campus to get a feel for the school before they need to decide. And even if you are off doing spring break tours, what you’re seeing is not exactly…

Comparing Financial Aid Awards

We’re almost there: acceptance letters are arriving and the May 1 decision day is right around the corner. For most families, how much schools cost is part of the decision making process. But comparing award letters from different schools might seem like comparing apples to taco salad. The good news is, all offers need to show total cost of attendance,…

Common App Essay Prompts

This year has seen a lot of change, and the Common App is part of that. For the first time in years, the Common App has a new essay prompt: “Reflect on something that someone has done for you that has made you happy or thankful in a surprising way. How has this gratitude affected or motivated you?” According to…

Trends in Public University Tuition

Talking about broad topics is fraught with peril. As I mentioned last week, college applications are up, except that they’re only up at some schools and a lot of the increase comes from students submitting more applications, not more students submitting applications. Today I’m going to tackle public university tuition directions for the coming year. Before going there, I need…