The Cost of College

Hard Truth Alert: For most middle class or wealthier families, college will cost a fortune and tuition will increase faster than the yearly rate of inflation. A decent college option for your child costs a minimum of $25,000 per year, before any merit or financial aid. Since schools only keep 6 year graduation rates, we follow their assumption that it will take 6 years to matriculate. The cost is $150,000 for those 6 years. Your investment, however, is not for the 6 years but also for the additional 40 years of work your child most likely will put in. The math will tell you that the investment for those 46 years works out to be approximately $9.00 per... Read More »

How To Prepare New College Freshman For Academics and Life On-Campus

As you may have read in the media, like this from the Washington Post, most high school students are dramatically unprepared for life as a college student.  There are 3 weak-spots that standout as key indicators of a coming struggle in the first year(s) college.  First, as per the ACT survey of Educators: your high school faculty and staff are telling you that your child is well-prepared, but the truth is much different. Only 26% of college professors believe that their students are well or very-well prepared for college-level academic work!!  In practice, even less than that 26% are actually studying efficiently and achieving grades equal to their talents. Contrast... Read More »

It’s a Rough Job Market for College Grads in 2014

Accenture, a global leader in management consulting, has published their 2014 College Graduate Employment Report. The employment prospects for recent college grads are still quite bleak.  Even amongst those who graduated in 2012 and 2013, steady and fruitful employment has not yet been acquired by most. Here are some of the highlights:
  • 26% of 2012/2013 college grads are making less than $19,000
  • 13% of 2012/2013 College Grads have been unable to find a job since graduation
  • 46% of 2012/2013 grads are underemployed in 2014, a 5% jump since last year
  • 42% of 2012/2013 college grads are living at home w/parents
  • Only 21% of employed 2012/2013 college grads are earning more than $40k
Clearly, the lingering affects of... Read More »

Higher Expectations: Is a Master’s Degree a Requirement for a Middle Class Salary? has a fascinating look into the changing domain of secondary and tertiary education over the last 50 years in the new post, "Master's Degrees Are as Common Now as Bachelor's Degrees Were in the '60s."  The post summarizes research done by the U.S. Department of Education on the rise of the Master's degree over the end of the 20th and beginning of the 21st centuries.  Here are some of the highlights:
  • 8% of Americans, approximately 16 million people, hold a Master's degree as of 2012, a 43% increase since 2002.  Is some of this educational attainment occurring as college graduates and young workers seek shelter from the poor labor market? One would suspect so, but increased domestic... Read More »

    How to Research A College Online

    Lots of students and parents are bemused by the beautiful and complex websites that colleges and universities offer. Many college websites are plagued by information and image overload, perhaps as a specific marketing strategy aimed at capturing a viewer's attention immediately. American colleges spend beaucoup dollars researching the behavior of website visitors and focus much of their marketing muscle on creating an image of prestige and abundance with pictures of impressive facilities, student success stories, and faculty achievements.  However, all of this information and imagery does not tell one about what actually happens to real students at this particular college or university.  Fortunately, your friends at NACAC,  the National Association for College Admission Counseling, have shared some insights about how to get to the most relevant and unofficial information about... Read More »

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