Author Topic: Kids and College-Will you pay?  (Read 47675 times)

MaybeBabyMustache

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Re: Kids and College-Will you pay?
« Reply #150 on: June 07, 2021, 04:10:34 PM »
Amen, @CrustyBadger . On top of that, if you have executive functioning issues, often that type of time & organizationally intense projects results in kids shutting down. It's not a great solution for all types of kids.

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Re: Kids and College-Will you pay?
« Reply #151 on: June 07, 2021, 06:41:52 PM »
This topic came up in my household over the weekend. It is quite likely that our two kids will inherit a fair sum of money from grandparents in their early 20s and I proposed that we set up a trust that will pay them a basic income each year - my logic I was that this would provide a safety net for them, but still require them to earn the luxuries of life. I thought this was an elegant solution that is inline with current thinking about universal basic incomes, etc.

My wife thought that was a terrible idea - her view is that the struggle and juggling to make ends meet is an essential part of growing up into being a fully functional adult. If we pay for everything then we are more likely to more harm than good. We both worked right through college (about 16 - 20 hours a week, although my parents paid my tuition).  I agree with her, all that hard work gave us a strong work ethic, budgeting skills, and made us much more employable upon graduation.

Our kids are still small, but I can see it being hard to find the sweet spot between being the backup they need, while not ‘over providing’ when they start adulting.

scantee

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Re: Kids and College-Will you pay?
« Reply #152 on: June 07, 2021, 07:15:01 PM »
Amen, @CrustyBadger . On top of that, if you have executive functioning issues, often that type of time & organizationally intense projects results in kids shutting down. It's not a great solution for all types of kids.

Young adults with executive functioning challenges are often well-served by taking a gap year to mature, work, and take their time with college applications. At least that is my observation from seeing some very bright kids go off to college and totally flame out. An extra year or two to mature and they usually go back and are successful. They just weren’t ready at 18.

It can be really hard for some high-achieving parents to accept this alternate approach (or any alternate approach). We’re so trained to believe there is one very rigid path to success and any deviation from that path will certainly lead to failure. I personally feel like that’s silly but I understand that it’s hard to let go of the idea that there is only one true way to be successful.

MaybeBabyMustache

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Re: Kids and College-Will you pay?
« Reply #153 on: June 07, 2021, 08:26:44 PM »
Amen, @CrustyBadger . On top of that, if you have executive functioning issues, often that type of time & organizationally intense projects results in kids shutting down. It's not a great solution for all types of kids.

Young adults with executive functioning challenges are often well-served by taking a gap year to mature, work, and take their time with college applications. At least that is my observation from seeing some very bright kids go off to college and totally flame out. An extra year or two to mature and they usually go back and are successful. They just weren’t ready at 18.

It can be really hard for some high-achieving parents to accept this alternate approach (or any alternate approach). We’re so trained to believe there is one very rigid path to success and any deviation from that path will certainly lead to failure. I personally feel like that’s silly but I understand that it’s hard to let go of the idea that there is only one true way to be successful.

I'm unsure if this is directed at me, since you quoted me, but I agree. I noted above that a gap year, or first attending community college was something we were considering for one of our kids. Ultimately it's his decision, but at the current rate (he's 15), I do not seeing going off to a four year school in three years as a successful plan.

scantee

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Re: Kids and College-Will you pay?
« Reply #154 on: June 08, 2021, 08:01:44 AM »
Amen, @CrustyBadger . On top of that, if you have executive functioning issues, often that type of time & organizationally intense projects results in kids shutting down. It's not a great solution for all types of kids.

Young adults with executive functioning challenges are often well-served by taking a gap year to mature, work, and take their time with college applications. At least that is my observation from seeing some very bright kids go off to college and totally flame out. An extra year or two to mature and they usually go back and are successful. They just weren’t ready at 18.

It can be really hard for some high-achieving parents to accept this alternate approach (or any alternate approach). We’re so trained to believe there is one very rigid path to success and any deviation from that path will certainly lead to failure. I personally feel like that’s silly but I understand that it’s hard to let go of the idea that there is only one true way to be successful.

I'm unsure if this is directed at me, since you quoted me, but I agree. I noted above that a gap year, or first attending community college was something we were considering for one of our kids. Ultimately it's his decision, but at the current rate (he's 15), I do not seeing going off to a four year school in three years as a successful plan.

Mostly it was a general comment on EF as it relates to preparedness for college. Tying it back to the original topic (will you pay?): the parents of these kids expressed some regrets that they didn’t give their kids more space to mature before starting. A few of them shelled out pretty big $$$ only to have that first year be sort of a ‘lost’ year.

I do plan to pay for at least part of my kids’ college so my takeaway from all of this is that I want to really make sure that they’re ready. Because man would it suck to spend a quarter of their college fund only for them to have redo those classes because they failed out.

MaybeBabyMustache

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Re: Kids and College-Will you pay?
« Reply #155 on: June 08, 2021, 08:07:37 AM »
Amen, @CrustyBadger . On top of that, if you have executive functioning issues, often that type of time & organizationally intense projects results in kids shutting down. It's not a great solution for all types of kids.

Young adults with executive functioning challenges are often well-served by taking a gap year to mature, work, and take their time with college applications. At least that is my observation from seeing some very bright kids go off to college and totally flame out. An extra year or two to mature and they usually go back and are successful. They just weren’t ready at 18.

It can be really hard for some high-achieving parents to accept this alternate approach (or any alternate approach). We’re so trained to believe there is one very rigid path to success and any deviation from that path will certainly lead to failure. I personally feel like that’s silly but I understand that it’s hard to let go of the idea that there is only one true way to be successful.

I'm unsure if this is directed at me, since you quoted me, but I agree. I noted above that a gap year, or first attending community college was something we were considering for one of our kids. Ultimately it's his decision, but at the current rate (he's 15), I do not seeing going off to a four year school in three years as a successful plan.

Mostly it was a general comment on EF as it relates to preparedness for college. Tying it back to the original topic (will you pay?): the parents of these kids expressed some regrets that they didn’t give their kids more space to mature before starting. A few of them shelled out pretty big $$$ only to have that first year be sort of a ‘lost’ year.

I do plan to pay for at least part of my kids’ college so my takeaway from all of this is that I want to really make sure that they’re ready. Because man would it suck to spend a quarter of their college fund only for them to have redo those classes because they failed out.

I think your macro point is also true. My husband & I were both fantastic students, and very self motivated. We've had a lot of adjustments on our expectations, particularly when it comes to our older son. We crossed that bridge largely in 8th grade, but still have moments where we have to remind ourselves that there is nothing wrong with taking more time, starting slower, etc. It would be much worse to pay for a four year school & then fail out right away. We know multiple parents that this has happened too, and they are angry/upset/disappointed. Worse, the kids often are so ashamed & frustrated that they don't always want to continue schooling at a community college or ever. It's a terrible situation.


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Re: Kids and College-Will you pay?
« Reply #156 on: June 08, 2021, 12:46:09 PM »
Amen, @CrustyBadger . On top of that, if you have executive functioning issues, often that type of time & organizationally intense projects results in kids shutting down. It's not a great solution for all types of kids.

Young adults with executive functioning challenges are often well-served by taking a gap year to mature, work, and take their time with college applications. At least that is my observation from seeing some very bright kids go off to college and totally flame out. An extra year or two to mature and they usually go back and are successful. They just weren’t ready at 18.

It can be really hard for some high-achieving parents to accept this alternate approach (or any alternate approach). We’re so trained to believe there is one very rigid path to success and any deviation from that path will certainly lead to failure. I personally feel like that’s silly but I understand that it’s hard to let go of the idea that there is only one true way to be successful.

I'm unsure if this is directed at me, since you quoted me, but I agree. I noted above that a gap year, or first attending community college was something we were considering for one of our kids. Ultimately it's his decision, but at the current rate (he's 15), I do not seeing going off to a four year school in three years as a successful plan.

Mostly it was a general comment on EF as it relates to preparedness for college. Tying it back to the original topic (will you pay?): the parents of these kids expressed some regrets that they didn’t give their kids more space to mature before starting. A few of them shelled out pretty big $$$ only to have that first year be sort of a ‘lost’ year.

I do plan to pay for at least part of my kids’ college so my takeaway from all of this is that I want to really make sure that they’re ready. Because man would it suck to spend a quarter of their college fund only for them to have redo those classes because they failed out.

I think your macro point is also true. My husband & I were both fantastic students, and very self motivated. We've had a lot of adjustments on our expectations, particularly when it comes to our older son. We crossed that bridge largely in 8th grade, but still have moments where we have to remind ourselves that there is nothing wrong with taking more time, starting slower, etc. It would be much worse to pay for a four year school & then fail out right away. We know multiple parents that this has happened too, and they are angry/upset/disappointed. Worse, the kids often are so ashamed & frustrated that they don't always want to continue schooling at a community college or ever. It's a terrible situation.

This is more or less what happened to me and my two sons.  We all started out great at our various schools, but none of us were really mature enough or directed enough, so we lost a year or two in various ways.  At the end of the day, I graduated at 23 and had a good career from which I was able to FIRE at 46.

The nice thing about it is I can tell my sons that what they went through is totally fine and things will probably work out for them too.  The older son switched schools and majors, graduated with basically straight A's and got a good job right out of the gate.  The younger son was fortunate to take a gap year that coincided with COVID, and started back this week in summer school.

It does seem from my limited perspective that on average young men may need another year or two.  Young women are more likely to be ready.  My youngest had a better freshman year than their brothers.  But even they applied to switch schools, something we're now waiting to find out how that's going to turn out.

Chris Pascale

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Re: Kids and College-Will you pay?
« Reply #157 on: June 24, 2021, 06:16:32 PM »
My oldest just finished her first semester at a public college. I paid $5,000, she paid $500.

It worked out well enough so we'll do it again.

ncbill

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Re: Kids and College-Will you pay?
« Reply #158 on: July 12, 2021, 10:39:58 AM »
Sort of late on this thread but my kids used the military to pay for their undergraduate degrees.

One from a military academy and the other via a ROTC scholarship (campus-based) to a $$$ out-of-state private school.

The latter plans to come back home to fulfill their military obligation in the Guard. Our state also covers graduate tuition for military members at its public schools.

Here in the USA there is a lot of military money for college...ROTC scholarships, military academies, enlist & use the GI Bill afterwards, even joining the Guard covers tuition in many states at public schools.

easternblockbabe

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Re: Kids and College-Will you pay?
« Reply #159 on: August 09, 2021, 10:04:25 AM »
"I just watched my son go through the college application process last year, and saw what was required in hunting down and applying for scholarships.  It requires intense organizational skills and good writing ability, as well as a good dose of self esteem.  Kids who do not have string writing skills can get overwhelmed with the amount of essays required in applying for colleges plus the extra scholarship applications, especially if they are applying to multiple colleges because they are chasing merit aid.   "

I agree, getting to college can be extremely hard for a child that lacks self esteem, or suffers from anxiety.  We can't even talk about college with my high schooler, she gets anxious and flustered. I fear it'll be extremely hard to get her to apply for scholarships, which would ultimately help US in funding her college.  Because yes, and many posters may disagree, paying for your child's college IS a parent's obligation to help them get a good start in their career.  Anyone who is comfortable with your child starting out with a 100+k student loan -  I don't know how you can sleep at night.  You may argue that there are cheaper educational choices out there  - but excuse me, having a good college name on your resume does give you a tremendous advantage in the job market, and even more do the academic and social connections that you make while at school. 

What I want for my child is that she can graduate from a good college with no debt.  We've been saving in a 529 fund and plan on paying for full 4 years at the flagship state university here; if she's lucky to get into an even more desirable school - well, we'll be super proud and we'll figure the finances out.

caleb

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Re: Kids and College-Will you pay?
« Reply #160 on: August 10, 2021, 06:41:10 PM »
Just a side comment from someone who works with undergrads daily.

Probably the greatest college-related financial gift a parent can give a child is to raise an adult who can stand on their own two feet when they're 18.  Don't be their best buddy, and don't enable their teenage impulses.  Teach them to navigate the world and have some grit.  Babying a teenager is a parent consuming a child's future.

If a parent does the work of raising an adult, they can send them to the state flagship where full pop tuition is likely $15-20k, and they're never going to be seriously disadvantaged by that degree (bonus points if you happen to live in Michigan, California, etcetera).  It's a sink-or-swim environment, but a kid who's ready for it can thrive and graduate in four years.

The alternative is to not do the work to raise an adult, and that puts a bunch of the burden for becoming a self-sufficient adult on the kid after they leave the house.  Some flame out in state school.  Some take seven years to graduate.  Some go to a place with all manner of supports where the sticker price tuition is $50k+/year.  All of these are extremely expensive options necessitated by people not raising their kids to function as adults.  It translates a bunch of non-monetary costs for the parents during high school (conflict, angst, doubt, familial discord) into monetary costs for the child (student loans).  Parents are essentially having colleges raise their kids to adulthood (i.e. parenting) at the child's expense (rather than their own), often crippling that child's financial life for the foreseeable future.

The point here is that "paying" for a child's education can be financial, but it can also be in the form of doing all the unpleasant stuff to get a kid ready for the world.  Raising an independent kid who can hack it in a sink-or-swim environment can easily be worth 100k+ to that child.

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Re: Kids and College-Will you pay?
« Reply #161 on: August 10, 2021, 06:54:32 PM »
We will be covering two years of community college, anything else will be funded by our child working and paying cash.

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Re: Kids and College-Will you pay?
« Reply #162 on: August 28, 2021, 01:18:20 PM »
I'm just checking in to gloat. We work at an expensive private university and get tuition remission as part of our benefit package. A small part of me has been worried for years that something would go wrong, or our kid wouldn't get accepted, or the university would say we don't qualify or who knows what. But, I just logged into my son's account to check the bill and there is a big fat -25,000.00 listed for the Fall 21 semester! And it's tax free!

MaybeBabyMustache

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Re: Kids and College-Will you pay?
« Reply #163 on: August 28, 2021, 03:17:36 PM »
Wow, @Spiffy - that is amazing! Definitely worth a gloat :-)

Chris Pascale

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Re: Kids and College-Will you pay?
« Reply #164 on: August 28, 2021, 10:11:26 PM »
I'm just checking in to gloat. We work at an expensive private university and get tuition remission as part of our benefit package. A small part of me has been worried for years that something would go wrong, or our kid wouldn't get accepted, or the university would say we don't qualify or who knows what. But, I just logged into my son's account to check the bill and there is a big fat -25,000.00 listed for the Fall 21 semester! And it's tax free!

Awesome news. This is the way to go.

PepperPotts

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Re: Kids and College-Will you pay?
« Reply #165 on: September 04, 2021, 04:33:33 PM »
Trying to convince my son to go to a lower-ranked but still a state flagship University with a full ride National Merit Scholarship rather than pay a balance of $80K after scholarships at a higher-ranked state flagship University. We have the funds in his 529, so it's a matter of opportunity cost, no debt involved.  He wants to study computer science.  Any thoughts? Or convincing arguments?

MaybeBabyMustache

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Re: Kids and College-Will you pay?
« Reply #166 on: September 04, 2021, 04:49:41 PM »
@PepperPotts - how is the difference between CS programs at both schools? Can you leverage some of that info to convince him? Congrats to him, btw, on the National Merit Scholarship! I also received one, & it changed my life. Ironically for this thread, it helped me attend a smaller private ($$$$) college vs our giant state university, and that was definitely the right step for me.

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Re: Kids and College-Will you pay?
« Reply #167 on: September 04, 2021, 06:49:40 PM »
We planned on saving for college as soon as our two children were born. They both have BAs they got in four years and have no debt. They are 30 and 33 and employed and grateful. I have seen their peers struggle with massive loan debt. My son took out a loan for a summer program and my daughter took out a small loan for her masters. For today’s youth, who knows what college financial aid will look like? We insisted that they maintain a B average and they did that with no problem. They also handled the admission process themselves and received good merit scholarships at smaller private schools that made the cost comparable to state university. For my daughter, we were able to negotiate a higher aid package by showing her preferred school a competing offer. Often the community or corporate scholarships you get are deducted from the total financial aid offer.




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Re: Kids and College-Will you pay?
« Reply #168 on: September 05, 2021, 01:37:33 PM »
Trying to convince my son to go to a lower-ranked but still a state flagship University with a full ride National Merit Scholarship rather than pay a balance of $80K after scholarships at a higher-ranked state flagship University. We have the funds in his 529, so it's a matter of opportunity cost, no debt involved.  He wants to study computer science.  Any thoughts? Or convincing arguments?

I'd advise to also research how competitive the CS majors are to get into, as well. My son has a quite a few friends that ended up having to switched universities after a couple of years because they couldn't get into the major because it was so competitive, even though they had the grades and pre-reqs. Another got into the major, but it's so hard to get a seat in the required CS classes that he ended up doing two super-senior years in order to get all the required credit hours to graduate (pandemic likely played into the need for a year six a bit, as well, but still good to keep in mind).

PepperPotts

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Re: Kids and College-Will you pay?
« Reply #169 on: September 05, 2021, 04:54:19 PM »
Trying to convince my son to go to a lower-ranked but still a state flagship University with a full ride National Merit Scholarship rather than pay a balance of $80K after scholarships at a higher-ranked state flagship University. We have the funds in his 529, so it's a matter of opportunity cost, no debt involved.  He wants to study computer science.  Any thoughts? Or convincing arguments?

I'd advise to also research how competitive the CS majors are to get into, as well. My son has a quite a few friends that ended up having to switched universities after a couple of years because they couldn't get into the major because it was so competitive, even though they had the grades and pre-reqs. Another got into the major, but it's so hard to get a seat in the required CS classes that he ended up doing two super-senior years in order to get all the required credit hours to graduate (pandemic likely played into the need for a year six a bit, as well, but still good to keep in mind).

I'm worried about this.  His favored school, Texas A&M, requires a 3.75 GPA for the freshman year to guarantee the first choice major, and CS is the most popular major, so it's competitive.  The engineering school is also huge, and growing. 
« Last Edit: September 05, 2021, 04:56:13 PM by PepperPotts »