While searching for financial aid advice to pass on to students I recently stumbled across an extremely interesting article titled "Beware of the College Bait and Switch” by Lynn O'Shaughnessy on her blog, The College Solution. We all know the old bait and switch: an amazing product is advertised at an unbelievable price, and once the consumer is hooked an inferior product is delivered much to the consumer’s surprise and chagrin. In her short piece, O'Shaughnessy identifies a trap that many college bound students and their families unknowingly fall into -- the "college bait and switch" involves a school offering a very generous financial aid package to an incoming freshman, then dramatically decreasing financial support for the following years of enrollment.
As a College Prep Specialist I know that tuition and financial aid packages are often the deciding factors for students in choosing where to matriculate. In the upcoming months as students begin to receive acceptance letters and financial aid packages I will actively advise my students to be aware of this possibly disparity in financial aid by year, as well as make sure they fully understand the conditions of any scholarships and awards they receive. For example, many scholarships require that students reapply each year, maintain high GPA, or register for a certain number of credits to continue receiving the award. It is nuances like these that eager college bound freshman may be temped to overlook but can make or break a college career further down the line.
Read the full article here:
College Prep Specialist - Strawberry Mansion High School
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Free Library of Philadelphia
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