NKU

Twelve Myths & Truths about College

It’s that time of year again… It’s time for 17-year-olds to make one of the biggest financial decisions of their lives. It’s time for these kids to decide what they are going to do for the rest of their lives. It’s time for seniors in high school to choose a college.

My daughter had to make these decisions last year. She began her freshman year of college at Northern Kentucky University last month. I’m going to tell you some of the things you are going to be told your child must do and then I’m going to tell you the truth based on our experience.

 

 

 

 

Things Other People, Including High School Guidance Counselors, are Going to Tell You and Your Children:

You should apply to five to seven schools to make sure you get accepted to one.
You should apply to schools you know you can’t afford.
There are plenty of scholarships out there and you’ll be sure to find one.
You can wait until after you graduate to make a final decision on which college you will attend.
Students with high GPAs and ACT scores will get a full ride.
You have to live on campus to get the full college experience.
You will find some way to pay for college, even if it’s loans.
College is really the only way to make something of yourself.
Books will cost at least $1,000 a semester.
Don’t fill out the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) if you know your child won’t qualify for free grants.
Your EFC (Expected Family Contribution) is what you should be able to pay toward your child’s college.
You can’t receive new scholarships after you started college.

 

The Truth Based on Our Experience:

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Choosing a College

You may remember a post I wrote last fall called How to Prep for Your Child’s Senior Year. Well, my daughter Andi’s senior year will come to an end in two months. We definitely weren’t as prepared as I would have liked to have been but I am much more prepared for my son Joey, who is only a freshman. After college visits, tons of research and lots of tears, Andi has chosen a college and a major.

Over the last two years, we have toured Illinois State University, Georgia State University, Thomas More College and Northern Kentucky University. We didn’t really consider cost when choosing which schools to tour, knowing that she would receive some merit money and hopefully receive other scholarships. Thomas More and Northern Kentucky University were obvious choices because of location. ISU and GSU were picked based on her interests.

Thomas More College

Thomas More offers a beautiful campus and although it is private, it can be very affordable. The school is able to offer a lot of scholarships, which actually brought the tuition down to about the cost of NKU. Andi wasn’t sure what her major would be when we toured but TMC does not offer what she ultimately chose. However, she ruled TMC out before even picking a major. Thomas More has about 1300 students, which isn’t much bigger than Andi’s high school. She wants something larger than that.

Illinois State University

ISU was our first college visit. We actually chose ISU because they offer a recreational circus program that Joey is interested in. You can read about this visit here. Andi really didn’t consider ISU but it was good to have something to compare other schools to and was a great family […]