Scholarship Mom Alert: Nurse Journal College Scholarship

Scholarships for those interested in medical field. Photo by Wendy David-Gaines

Scholarships for those interested in medical field. Photo by Wendy David-Gaines

Enrolled in a medical program and looking to win a scholarship to help pay for college? College Scholarship Expert Monica L. Matthews has found a great choice. The Nurse Journal College Scholarship is merit not income based. That means there is no income requirement students have to meet but a minimum Grade Point Average (GPA) is necessary.

Monica describes the application process and her excellent “Winning Tips” in her post:

Nurse Journal College Scholarship

Read Monica’s post and apply!

Good Luck!!!

Wednesday’s Parent: 4 strings attached to FREE financial aid

Strings attached to FREE financial aid. Photo by Wendy David-Gaines

Strings attached to FREE financial aid. Photo by Wendy David-Gaines

College-bound families looking for help in paying for college are on the hunt for financial aid but even free money grants and scholarships can have strings attached like loans that must be paid back. Grants and scholarships can come from federal or state governments, colleges, and private outside scholarship sources. Students must be prepared to check out the terms of any awards as carefully as if they are student loans.

FAFSA is the Free Application for Federal Student Aid released every January 1 for the following school year. If your student is attending college for the 2015-2016 school year, now is the time to file FAFSA. Although income and other tax information is required, estimate now and go back to update after submitting tax returns. You may be able to use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool that automatically fills in the numbers from the returns.

When the FAFSA is processed, the federal government applies certain complicated formulas to determine the student and his family’s need for financial aid and the programs they qualify for. The student and the colleges the student selects receive a numerical result called the Expected Family Contribution or EFC. Colleges use this figure and any other financial aid forms they require to calculate awards to admitted students from their own institutional funds. States and private outside scholarship sponsors have their own method of award calculations.

No matter the donor, there can be strings attached to financial aid gifts. Before accepting, students should discover if their awards have conditions and the penalties for failure to meet them. The punitive action may be minor or harsh like forfeiture of future aid or having to pay back financial aid money given.

Here are four string examples:

  1. Make the grade. Students must make Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) In order to continue receiving financial aid from many sources including federal and state programs. In other words, students have to make good enough grades. Each school has their own SAP policy so check the college’s website or call the financial aid office to find the minimum GPA (grade point average) that has to be maintained and how often the school will evaluate the student’s progress.
  2. Get enough credit. There is a big difference between college costs for part-time and full-time students and financial aid reflects this. When credits are lost from not completing a class or withdrawal, it could change the student’s attendance status and the eligibility for aid previously awarded.
  3. Keep moving forward. Repeating a class, changing a major, or transferring and losing credits can mess up the momentum toward successfully completing a degree or certificate in the time period that’s acceptable at the college. Financial aid doesn’t last forever. Time limits make college financial aid expire.
  4. Stay put. Some scholarships and grants are awarded based on a student’s interest in an activity or course of study. Dropping out could mean losing the award for no longer playing the tuba in the band, being the quarterback, majoring in physics, being an A-earning student, etc.

Financial aid goes to eligible students only so if student qualifications change, they may no longer be eligible to receive financial aid. Parents can discuss with their student the importance of understanding the strings attached, committing to following them, and dealing with the consequences if they break the strings.

Read Suzanne’s post: “We Won’t Qualify for Financial Aid” 

Read more about financial aid tools and how to make affordable college choices:
Wednesday’s Parent: Formula and tools to calculate college costs
5 financial resolutions the college-bound should make
Money influences college choices from the start

__________________________________

Wednesday’s child may be full of woe but Wednesday’s Parent can substitute action for anxiety. Each Wednesday Suzanne Shaffer and I will provide parent tips to get and keep your student on the college track. It’s never too late or too early to start!

This month Suzanne and I will host Twitter chat #CampusChat at 9pm ET/6pm PT on Wednesday, January 21. Our guest will be financial aid expert Jodi Okun. She is the founder of College Financial Aid Advisors, an About.com Money Expert, host as @JodiOkun of #CollegeCash twitter chat, and the @Discover Student Loans Brand Ambassador. Jodi has helped thousand of families navigate the financial aid process so you don’t want to miss a chance to get her tips and ask questions.

Read Wednesday’s Parent Night on #CampusChat! for some simple instructions to join a Twitter chat.

Wednesday’s Parent will give twice the info and double the blog posts on critical parenting issues by clicking on the link at the end of the article from www.pocsmom.com to http://www.parentscountdowntocollegecoach.com/ and vice versa.

Scholarship Mom Alert: Local college scholarship finder

Local college scholarship finder. Photo by Wendy David-Gaines

Local college scholarship finder. Photo by Wendy David-Gaines

Many students spend their scholarship searching time exclusively looking for well-known national and international scholarship sponsors and miss out on what is offered in their own backyard. Ignoring local scholarships can backfire “because they have much less competition than national scholarships and the chances of winning are greater for students who diligently apply for them,” according to College Scholarship Expert Monica L. Matthews.

To help the college-bound, Monica put together a great collection of links in her post:

How to Find More Local College Scholarships

It is a must-read packed with tips to jumpstart your own local scholarship search.

Get going now and good luck!!!

Wednesday’s Parent: Peer pressure sabotages college prep

Steamed about peer pressure. Photo by Wendy David-Gaines

Steamed about peer pressure. Photo by Wendy David-Gaines

The golden rule may be all about putting others first but college prep offers the chance for the college-bound to be selfish. It’s a 180 degree reversal of the good citizen message parents emphasize but essential to combat the influence of peer pressure during the college prep process.

Peer pressure pitfalls include following a boyfriend’s choice of college over a better fit, joining a popular club with no personal interest, acting or failing to act to follow the crowd, and down-playing a skill or talent just to fit in. If you think your child is above this, think again. A teen’s self-esteem is more fragile than ice starting to freeze at the first frost. Sacrificing a personal want can seem superior when it gains the comfort of being accepted by a group. Unfortunately, college acceptance is based on a different set of rules.

Institutions of higher learning set minimum admission requirements for applicants to share but that doesn’t mean they want cookie cutter students. The onus is on students to showcase what they offer to the campus that is special and unique. Introspection and self-evaluation can go a long way to focus student emphasis on who they are now and what they want to achieve.

College prep includes beefing up strengths and fortifying weaknesses. It leads students beyond their own circle to explore new ideas and ways. If peer pressure is holding your student back, parents and students can work together as a team to do what is in the student’s best interest. Start with brainstorming college, lifestyle and career goals. Then form a plan to make it happen. And this kind of selfishness fits right in with college prep.

Read Suzanne’s post: College Prep Peer Pressure

__________________________________

Wednesday’s child may be full of woe but Wednesday’s Parent can substitute action for anxiety. Each Wednesday Suzanne Shaffer and I will provide parent tips to get and keep your student on the college track. It’s never too late or too early to start!

This month Suzanne and I will host Twitter chat #CampusChat at 9pm ET/6pm PT on Wednesday, January 21. We will feature an expert on a topic of interest for parents of the college-bound. 

Wednesday’s Parent will give twice the info and double the blog posts on critical parenting issues by clicking on the link at the end of the article from www.pocsmom.com to http://www.parentscountdowntocollegecoach.com/ and vice versa.

Wednesday’s Parent: College prep New Year spoiler alert

College prep spoiler alert

College prep spoiler alert

Common folklore ushers in the New Year with dreams of new beginnings but these idyllic hopes can rot the very core of college prep. Students have an academic, extracurricular and social history that can’t be ignored. A fresh start, by its nature, emphasizes the now without incorporating previous accomplishments. Meanwhile, successful preparation for college builds on the past, enhances strengths, and fortifies weaknesses. Without considering what was, students are at a huge disadvantage when considering what will be.

Don’t throw the baby out with the bath water. It’s okay to take stock and want to improve via a host of good-intentioned New Year’s Resolutions. However, for most people, these fail before the end of the first month of the year. What a waste of time and renewed energy!

In College-bound can nix New Year’s resolutions for this, I suggest students pick one thing within their control to focus on and change for the better. Read the article for specific suggestions that are geared to achieving both college and career goals. They are based on the categories of changing a personal characteristic, daily life activity, or learning something new. By choosing one thing, chances are this positive modification will become a permanent practice. And it’s common knowledge how hard it is to break a habit!

Parents of the college-bound can use the same resolution substitution idea zeroing in on one thing to change. Wednesday’s Parent: Emotion management 101 has five key areas to choose from that will make a big difference and Wednesday’s Parent: 3 ways to prep middle schoolers for college prep can be adapted for use with high school students. If you haven’t already begun your own parent-student team, now is the time to get going. In Wake-Up Call for Parents of the College-Bound, the mechanics are detailed.

Lots of changes are coming as the parent-child relationship morphs into a parent-adult child relationship. Parents can smooth the way for the new family dynamic that is growing the same time students are entering the college admission process. Enjoy your front row seat to the birth of a brand new adult!

Read Suzanne’s post: New Year’s Resolutions and College Prep

Read more: Wednesday’s Parent: Change New Year’s Resolutions into Selfie-Recommendations

__________________________________

Wednesday’s child may be full of woe but Wednesday’s Parent can substitute action for anxiety. Each Wednesday Suzanne Shaffer and I will provide parent tips to get and keep your student on the college track. It’s never too late or too early to start!

The bonus is on the fourth Wednesday of each month when Suzanne and I will host Twitter chat #CampusChat at 9pm ET/6pm PT. We will feature an expert on a topic of interest for parents of the college-bound. 

Wednesday’s Parent will give twice the info and double the blog posts on critical parenting issues by clicking on the link at the end of the article from www.pocsmom.com to http://www.parentscountdowntocollegecoach.com/ and vice versa.

 

 

Scholarship Mom Alert: January deadline scholarships

Scholarships with January Deadlines. Photo by Wendy David-Gaines

Scholarships with January Deadlines. Photo by Wendy David-Gaines

Time is always precious but for the college-bound, it seem to pass quicker than usual over school breaks…especially when it comes to college prep activities. College scholarship expert Monica L. Matthews is providing a list of scholarships with January 2015 deadlines so students can spend more time applying than researching.

Thank you Monica for giving the gift of time! To see Monica’s list, go to:

College scholarships January deadlines

While you’re there, check out Monica’s special winning tips to create amazing scholarship applications in her How to Win College Scholarships.

Good Luck, Happy Holidays, Happy New Year!

Scholarship Mom Alert: FormSwift $1,000 Scholarship Contest

Time to apply for scholarships. Photo by Wendy David-Gaines

Time to apply for scholarships. Photo by Wendy David-Gaines

If you are a fan of mixing business with pleasure then try using the holiday break to mix pleasure with business. I always suggest adding some fun to reduce daily stress from school, work and college prep but time off has a habit of flying by leaving a long to-do list untouched. That causes major stress when it’s back to school. Students will be very unhappy if they miss the opportunity to apply for this college scholarship over their vacation.

If you haven’t visited College Scholarship Expert Monica L. Matthews’ How to Win College Scholarships site, one look and you’ll become a regular. This week she is featuring the FormSwift College Scholarship along with her MUST READ winning tips. Check out it out here:

FormSwift College Scholarship

The reason students will be so miserable if they pass up this scholarship is because they get a great chance to beat the usual competition. This scholarship is so brand new it is not on many students’ radar.

Good Luck and enjoy applying for the FormSwift College Scholarship!!!

College prep over the holidays

Mixing Happy Holidays with college prep. Photo by Wendy David-Gaines

Mixing Happy Holidays with college prep. Photo by Wendy David-Gaines

The school holiday break is approaching fast raising the dilemma of where college prep fits in. Should it be dropped giving students a chance to relax and have fun jeopardizing momentum or should it keep going full speed ahead risking burnout? Is there a satisfying middle where the college-bound won’t lose any ground?

Join Smart College Visit’s Twitter chat #CampusChat on Wednesday, December 17 at 9 pm ET to participate in the discussion about college prep over the holidays. It’s open mic night with me, Wendy David-Gaines of #WednesdaysParent, guest hosting. 

Read Wednesday’s Parent Night on #CampusChat! to learn how to join a twitter chat.

Bring your tips, comments and questions about college prep stocking stuffers, what should/not be on the college prep to do list, and more. See you there!

RECAP: Don’t worry if you missed any great tips from our College prep over the holidays #CampusChat on 12/17/14. Read our transcript

 __________________________________

Wednesday’s child may be full of woe but Wednesday’s Parent can substitute action for anxiety. Each Wednesday Suzanne Shaffer and I will provide parent tips to get and keep your student on the college track. It’s never too late or too early to start!

Suzanne and I host Twitter chat #CampusChat at 9pm ET/6pm PT on the fourth Wednesday of each month. Except this month, we are hosting an open mic night on Wednesday, December 17. Bring your questions and comments about college prep over the holidays!

Wednesday’s Parent will give twice the info and double the blog posts on critical parenting issues by clicking on the link at the end of the article from www.pocsmom.com to http://www.parentscountdowntocollegecoach.com/ and vice versa.

Plan for after college before college

AfterCollege_HighResJPG

Planning for after college can be a huge help for the college-bound. AfterCollege’s mission is to help students discover their first job or internship. It reaches more than 5,000,000 users each year, including 18,000 faculty, student group and administrative contacts at over 2,000 colleges and universities, according to its website. When checking out the site, don’t forget to look at the AfterCollege Scholarships page.

This guest post from AfterCollege via Roberto Angulo, CEO of AfterCollege, shows how knowing the trends can help students focused on STEM (science, math, technology engineering) fields explore internship/employment opportunities that match their interests. It also includes a Top 10 Employers list in 2014 for students of various majors. Take it away Roberto:

 

When it comes to finding an internship or job after graduation, which companies are college students and recent grads most interested in? The AfterCollege Employer Popularity Index (EPI) is a ranking of the top employers as rated by students in the fields of technology, engineering, business, nursing, allied health, and life sciences.

These rankings are based on more than 685,000 feedback points from college students and recent grads in the United States. The EPI is unique in that it doesn’t just ask students where they want to work—it ranks the companies students are actively following and seeking jobs and internships from.

“The key to a successful university recruiting program is an employer’s ability to build their brand on campus. The Employer Popularity Index is an unbiased resource for employers to measure their presence on a particular campus and even among specific departments and majors. It’s no surprise Google has been rising in the ranks over the last several years as they’ve developed one of the most comprehensive on-campus recruiting strategies in the industry,” says Roberto Angulo, CEO of AfterCollege.

We’ve noticed a few significant trends in 2014. Some industries, like tech, have held steady for the past three years with Google, Microsoft, and Intel remaining the employers of choice. There’s been some change among engineering students, who now also rate Google as a top ten employer. Engineering students’ interest in NASA and IBM has waned, with both of these employers losing their spots in the top ten this year. Google is now the top choice employer for Business students, while in 2014 Wells Fargo lost its spot in the top five to Deloitte. The top five preferred employers for Allied Health students—Kaiser Permanente, CVS, Target, Children’s National Health, and the Mayo Clinic—have held steady for the past three years.

Top 10 Employers for Tech Students in 2014

  1. Google
  2. Intel Corporation
  3. Microsoft Corporation
  4. IBM
  5. Apple
  6. Amazon
  7. National Security Agency
  8. Facebook
  9. Hewlett-Packard
  10. Cisco

Top 10 Employers for Engineering Students in 2014

  1. The Boeing Company
  2. Intel Corporation
  3. Lockheed Martin
  4. General Electric
  5. Raytheon
  6. Google
  7. The Aerospace Corporation
  8. Apple
  9. National Security Agency
  10. Northrop Grumman Corporation

Top 10 Employers for Business Students in 2014

  1. Google
  2. Intel Corporation
  3. Target
  4. JP Morgan Chase
  5. Deloitte
  6. Wells Fargo
  7. Bank of America
  8. National Security Agency
  9. Apple
  10. Kaiser Permanente

Top 10 Employers for Allied Health Students in 2014

  1. Kaiser Permanente
  2. CVS
  3. Target
  4. Children’s National Health
  5. Mayo Clinic
  6. Stanford Health Care
  7. Walgreens Pharmacy
  8. Department of Veterans Affairs
  9. Cedars Sinai Medical Center
  10. St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center

Scholarship Mom Alert: Savor Summer College Scholarship

Savor Summer College Scholarship. Photo rights from Monica L. Matthews

The Savor Summer College Scholarship. Photo rights from Monica L. Matthews

Here’s a unique chance to be among the first applicants for a brand new scholarship. College Scholarship Expert Monica L. Matthews is going above and beyond her usual winning tips for students by giving them a chance to apply for a special new opportunity to help pay for college right on her own website!!!

Monica is sponsoring her own 

Savor Summer College Scholarship

Click the link, read the details, and APPLY ASAP. The bonus is the scholarship application will help students plan. The essay gives students a chance to figure out how to best spend their precious summer break. The Savor Summer College Scholarship application is an organizational boost to college applications that also require information about awards, achievements, volunteer work, community service, work experience, memberships and leadership positions. Thank you Monica at how2winscholarships.com for sponsoring

Savor Summer College Scholarship

To all applicants, Good Luck!!!