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Monday, July 2, 2012

The Cost of College


Don't panic- but here is how much it will cost...

We will have two kids in college next year at Purdue University.
For each of them, this next school year could cost:
  • $9,900 for in state tuition ($28, 702 for out-of-state)
  • $10,000+ for room and board
  • $ 1000+ for books

It is expensive, to say the least – and this is a state university. Some of you planning on sending your child to a private university could be looking at spending anywhere from twice this to 5 times this amount for tuition.

Ways to make it more affordable?
If you have a child you hope will go to college one day – either soon or in the next 18 years, check out the 529 savings plan  or Kentucky Education Savings Plan Trust. We have used 529 Savings Plans for all our children, and it offers great tax savings as well as a way to save specifically for education.

Even shopping or eating out can help you save for your child. Through an organization called Upromise, you can save 5% of purchases you buy online for your child’s education.

Make sure you do know about scholarship options. Many of the large universities offer a standard scholarship for a high GPA and certain scores on ACT or SAT.

There are many other scholarships available from local places and organizations. Read more about this in our August issue of Today’s Family.

Student loans and work study opportunities (the kid works at the university for part of their assistance) are aplenty, and there are many options available depending on your income level and other factors.

Don’t Panic – If you don’t even have children close to the college age, then your main thing is to start saving a little using a 529 plan and possibly the upromise program. Who knows… maybe your child will get a full scholarship – it happens all the time – but they need to keep their grades high and be active in community service.

Contributed by Anita Oldham, Editor of Today's Family magazine

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