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Brad Baldridge is a late-stage college planning specialist. He helps parents of high school students plan and pay for college using strategies such as merit aid, need based aid, tax planning, savings and investing for college, negotiating with colleges, scholarships and loans.
Over the past 10 years Brad has directly helped hundreds of families plan and pay for college. He has provided in-depth college plans resulting in increased financial aid, scholarships, identification of the right schools at the right price, and better loans.
Brad’s expertise is featured weekly on his podcast, Taming The High Cost of College. Since 2013 Brad and his expert guests have explored and shared great information related to college planning. Brad received his Bachelors of Science degree from the University of Wisconsin Platteville in 1990.
On Today’s episode Brad gives parents advice on how to better manage their child’s college education.
Did you know? Brad built a specialty in college planning.
What do families do wrong with college planning? They start too late! The key to start early enough.
Did you know? College will cost you between 10 and 70K per year or more!
Brad’s words of wisdom: Do it on purpose instead of by accident. So if you go to college, figure out where you plan to go and what the plan will be when you get there. Don’t just show up at college, get good grades and think it’s all going to work out for you.
Make sure to go back and listen to episode #31, my interview with Celeste Horton about Creative Ways to Pay for College
For more information, visit: Prepped and Polished.com.
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What was your biggest takeaway from this podcast about Helping Families Tame the High Cost of College? Do you have any questions for Brad Baldridge and Alexis Avila?
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On episode 134, Alexis Avila talks to John Hupalo CEO of Invite Education and writer of Plan and Finance Your Family’s College Dreams; A Parent’s Step-by-step guide from Pre-K to Senior Year from the Co-Founders of Invite Education. John is a nationally recognized expert in education loan finance and private credit student loans. On today’s episode, John talks about some key strategies families should employ when planning and financing their child’s college education. For a free three month trial of Invite Education’s college planning and financing tool go to: www.inviteeducation.com and type in “3Free”
John’s words of wisdom for teens: The most successful people don’t typically draw straight lines from college to career. Be as flexible as possible, be open to opportunities, and find what inspires you.
For another related conversation, check out podcast episode #19 with Jodi Okun, Finding College Cash, http://preppedandpolished.com/jodi-okun-finding-college-cash/
What was your biggest takeaway from this podcast about Five Obstacles to a Four-Year-Graduation and How To Overcome Them? Do you have any questions for John Hupalo and Alexis Avila?
Alexis Avila of Prepped & Polished talks about some things parents should consider when choosing a private school for their child.
What was your biggest takeaway from this parenting podcast? Do you have any questions for Alexis Avila?
On episode 102, Alexis talks to college coach expert and writer Suzanne Shaffer of the popular college coaching site, Parents Countdown to College. Suzanne brings a unique perspective to the college admissions process, the PARENT’S perspective. On today’s episode, Suzanne shares her personal story and insights on how she helped her own kids navigate the college admissions process. If you are a ‘do it yourself’ kind of parent, this episode is a must listen.
Suzanne’s must do’s: apply to local scholarships, apply to colleges where you are going to shine
Suzanne’s things to avoid: don’t waste time applying to scholarships that you don’t think you have a chance winning, and don’t apply to colleges without visiting first
Suzanne’s ‘a-ha’ moment: 1. Everyone qualifies for financial aid, just fill out the FAFSA form!
Advice to parents? Don’t miss out on Twitter. Use twitter to ask questions to experts in college admission process.
Recommended college experts who offer tons of free information:
Financial Aid: Jodi Okun and my podcast with Jodi Okun
College Visits: Kelly Queijo and my podcast with Kelly Queijo
College Planning: Paul Hemphill
College Essays: College Essay Guy
What was your biggest takeaway from this podcast? Do you have any questions for Suzanne Shaffer and Alexis Avila?
On episode 66 of The Prepped & Polished Podcast Alexis talks to American journalist and New York Times Best Selling Author Frank Bruni. Frank is author of “Where You Go Is Not Who You’ll Be, An Antidote to the College Admissions Mania”. Frank was chief restaurant critic of the New York Times, from 2004 to 2009. He is the author of two bestselling books, Born Round, a memoir about his family’s love of food and his own struggles with overeating, and Ambling Into History, about George W. Bush. In June 2011, he was named an Op-Ed columnist for the newspaper. Frank received his undergrad from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Masters degree in journalistm from Columbia. On today’s episode, Frank talks about college admissions mania, the anxious parents of college bound students, and why top tier schools are rejecting even straight A students.
Frank’s advice for college-bound teens, “Remember a college education if it’s part of a life plan that you can execute is an extraordinary opportunity and adventure regardless of what that colleges acceptance rate is and there is a bevy of colleges that can give you an extraordinary education”
What was your biggest takeaway from this podcast? Do you have any questions for Frank Bruni and Alexis Avila?
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Alexis Avila talks to Monica Matthews educator and founder of www.how2winscholarships.com . In 2008-2009, Monica helped her oldest son procure over 100K in scholarship money. Monica now helps parents and students all over the world find and win college scholarship money.
What was your biggest takeaway from this podcast? Do you have any questions for Monica Matthews or Alexis Avila?
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Alexis Avila talks to Brian Ricks educator and founder of 101 Homeschool Ideas. Brian has a PhD from BYU in Educational Leadership and has over 12 years of teaching experience. He has homeschooled his children off and on for over five years. Brian is a homeschool expert who helps parents, children, and other educators come up with enriching homeschool learning activities.
What was your biggest takeaway from this podcast? Do you have any questions for Brian Ricks or Alexis Avila?
Alexis Avila talks to Maria Furtado executive director of the non-profit organization Colleges that Change Lives. Maria is a Stonehill College graduate and served as Director of Admissions at both Eckerd College and Clark University. Maria educates parents and teens about how to look beyond college ranking and explore colleges that best fit the student’s particular needs.
What was your biggest takeaway from this podcast? Do you have any questions for Maria Furtado or Alexis Avila?
Alexis Avila talks to Lon Woodbury educational consultant and founder of Alexis Avila talks to Lon Woodbury educational consultant and founder of StrugglingTeens.com, a leading online resource for parents of children making poor decision, and professionals trying to help those families.
What was your biggest takeaway from this podcast? Do you have any questions for Lon Woodbury or Alexis Avila?
Alexis Avila Founder/President of Prepped & Polished asks Financial Aid Strategist Todd Weaver to list his three favorite financial aid tips for parents.
1. Know your expected family contribution (EFC)
2. File financial aid forms on time or early.
3. Get to know your student’s financial aid advisor from the college he matriculated.
Todd Weaver’s company is called Strategies for College.
To see more of Todd’s work on financial aid, please visit his informative blog College Search Game plan.
Full Word-for-Word Transcription
Alexis: Hey everyone. Alexis Avila at Prepped and Polished here in Boston.
Today I’m with Todd Weaver, senior associate of Boston firm, Strategies for
College. Todd has a BA from Vanderbilt and an MBA from Northeastern as well
as several years of experience working in the financial aid office in
Northeastern University. So Todd, what financial aid tips do you have for
Todd: Tip number one. Know your expected family contribution. Parents and
students should log into college websites, and plug in their data to what’s
called a net price calculator. As of last year, all colleges are now
mandated to have a net price calculator on their website that allows a
family to plug in their financial data.
Sometimes a little bit more information than just that, like a student’s
grades and test scores, etc. To then learn what that particular college is
going to expect the family to pay as a net price. So not the sticker price,
but what your family is going to pay as the net price. That’s you EFC dry
run, so to speak.
Tip number two. File your forms for financial aid on time, or early if you
can. When I worked at Northeastern in the Financial Aid office, I can’t
tell you how many times people lost their financial aid when they didn’t
get their forms in on time. You need to check out all of the college
websites for financial aid to understand what the application deadlines
are, what forms are needed, and get things in on time.
Tip number three. Get to know your student’s financial aid adviser at the
college they matriculate at. What this is going to do is help you and your
student make sure that things are done in a timely fashion for each of the
four years that your student is in college. Not five years, just four. This
person will be an advocate for your student in helping them understand what
the repayment terms might be after college, what some of the loan
forgiveness options are. Perhaps, even talk to them a little bit about
income based repayment terms. IBR, which is a new program that the federal
government put out.
So the take away from these three tips is start early and know what your
family is up against in terms of the financial aid ramifications from each
college that your student is considering.
Alexis: Fantastic. Thanks so much, Todd, for your time. Parents, sign up
for Todd’s free informative blog, College Search GamePlan.com, and check
out his firm’s website, Strategies for College.net. Thanks, Todd.
Todd: Thanks, Alexis.
Which financial aid tip did you find most useful? Do you find the financial aid process cumbersome?
Post your tips/comments below.