College Planning Jobs for Parents

When it comes to planning for and getting into college, parents naturally want to help.

Unfortunately, many parents have no idea how to help.

The landscape’s completely different than it used to be (20-30 years ago!), confusing, bewildering, even more than a bit overwhelming!

Now, while getting into college is the student’s job, there are a few key areas in which a parent can play a role (without screwing things up!)…

Cheerleader-in-Chief

Schools value students who commit to an interest, while showing initiative and leadership. Whether through bake sales, carpools, or from the bleachers, parents help by supporting that commitment. And, when disappointment rears its ugly head, parents both can provide reassurance when needed and be ready to celebrate the arrival of good news.

Chief Financial Officer

Parents must understand their finances, knowing what they can afford to pay and what they can expect their student to pay. Most parents have absolutely no idea what they can and can’t afford.

And, they must keep that number handy as their student considers both where to apply and where to attend.

Parents also must know what financial aid they might receive from, as well as the potential net price of, any potential school. “Sticker price” and net price often are two very different numbers.

Travel Agent

No brochure or website can truly capture the feeling of a particular school. An on-site visit may be one of the greatest gifts a parent can give. Such a visit can be all the difference in making a successful college choice.

Database Administrator

Parents can assist through researching key college data, as well as through tracking deadlines to maintaining lists of potential schools.

Copy Editor

Parents should offer an editorial eye, checking for proper grammar, errors, and coherence, helping to ensure a well-written, evocative essay that just may impress an admissions officer.

College Parent

Perhaps, most of all, parents should be parents.

Tackle the freshman paperwork – the enrollment forms, housing applications, tuition invoices.

Assist in the move-in, setting up the dorm room, offer practical advice; but, don’t be over-bearing.

And, most importantly, work with your student to discuss establish a budget, set up a bank account, and acquire a credit card for emergencies (and be sure to establish exactly what qualifies as an emergency!).

Overwhelmed?  Could use some assistance with planning?  Contact our Professional College Planners to schedule the first meeting in your family’s college planning campaign.

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