Paying for college is a patchwork quilt approach – a tightly integrated matrix of funding sources to address most, if not all, known college costs. Learn about what options are available for your family to help your college-bound teenager afford a path to their brightest future.
A Framework for Affording College With Scholarships & Financial Aid
In this episode we’ll talk about…
- The difference between merit and need-based financial aid
- Types of family financial profiles
- A comprehensive framework for affording college
- Strategic tips for applying to scholarships
This is the second half of our two-part series on college finances! We’re joined again by Raymond Van Buskirk, the Financial Expert at Bright Futures Consulting, to walk us through the important details on financial aid opportunities and eliminate the “I wish I would have known”.
For the blog version of this episode, click here.
[02:43] The difference between merit and need-based financial aid
[06:33] Subsidized versus unsubsidized loans
[08:26] Should families consider both merit- and need-based aid?
[09:27] The difference between scholarships and financial aid
[11:23] Types of family financial profiles
[19:30] A framework for paying for college
[21:20] Responsibly approaching student loans
[26:48] Tax strategies
[30:10] Types of scholarships
[31:31] Save on tuition by saving time with dual-credit or AP courses
[32:48] Tips for applying for scholarships!
[37:43] Asking family for financial assistance
We can’t talk about college admissions and transitions without giving you homework. In this episode, Dr. Beth Dennard gives you these tasks:
- Have the hard financial talks with your teenager. If you haven’t already, listen to part 1 of this series on college finances where we share 4 tips for parents having the college money talk with their teens.
- Estimate the exact cost of college before you create a framework for paying. Calculate both the cost of tuition and the total cost of attendance through your university’s net price calculator. Click here to access a library of net price calculators.
Related Articles, Resources, & Content
- Here’s an example of a net price calculator for University of Texas, Austin and another from Texas A&M University.
- Find scholarships and track their deadlines with Naviance.
The 27 types of family financial profiles consist of 3 levels (high, medium, and low) on each of these dimensions. Use the chart below to begin to begin to determine your family financial profile:
- Does your student have a strong record of performance academically and/or do they have a unique or special talent?
- Do you have funds outside retirement, investment properties, CDs?
- It’s hard to assign actual income brackets here because there are a number of factors at play. For example, if your income is over $150,000, but have 2 children in college at the same time, you might actually be considered medium or low.