April is the month of the College Financial Award letter and a time of great confusion for parents. Many families are looking for College Award Letter help.
An interesting article found recently in the NY Times is tilted “What You Don’t Know About Financial Aid (but should) was written by Richard Perez-Pena. In his article, the author describes how difficult it is to understand and compare financial award letters from different colleges. He touches on need-based awards and states how each college handles these factors uniquely. The article addresses the net price calculators available through the colleges. It states that award letters can vary widely. Variables such as the goal of the college and the need of each family are a few factors that come into the amount each student receives. The link to his article is here:
As May 1st approaches students and families need to make a decision on their college for September. Before you make your decision, you should consider the follow items:
- Understanding of your student loan options
- Appealing the Award Letter
- Maximizing your tuition dollars
- Tax Scholarships
- Purpose of College
College Affordability has been promoting a program titled “Understanding Your Award letter”. We have held numerous free webinars with the goal of teaching parents how to improve their understanding of the financial aid award letter and the future costs of this college decision. We discuss the terms merit vs need based aid and also touch on the different types of loans available. There is still one more free future webinar and families can register on the EFC PLUS website under webinars.
College Affordability’s goal is to take the confusion out of your award letter so you can truly understand what the next four years will cost. The EFC PLUS College planning software, College Cost Analyzer has an award tool that helps with the comparison of the award letters.