The College Solutions Blog

Valuable insights from Lynn O’Shaughnessy
a nationally recognized college expert.

May 25, 2012

College Choices for Affluent Families

A mom emailed me earlier this week and I’ve somehow managed to stretch out the topic of her concern to three posts. If you’re curious, here are the previous ones: Who Is Stressed Out About College? Do You Really Expect Me To Pay That Much for College? Today I’m going to address her chief question: What do you do if...
Read More
April 20, 2012

When Two Children Head to College

Yesterday’s post, which explored the school options of a brilliant teenager from Wisconsin, generated many insightful comments from parents.  Here is the post: Should a Kid Borrow $80,000 for a Brand-Name University? If you missed the post or the comments, I’d urge you to check both out. To summarize, the teenager managed to get admitted to some elite schools including...
Read More
February 20, 2012

The Nation’s 62 Most Generous Colleges

What are the most generous colleges and universities in the country? US News & World Report attempts to answer that question every year when it rolls out its lists of institutions that self report that they meet 100% of each student’s financial need. Today I’m sharing the latest list that US News released last week. Not surprisingly, highly elite schools...
Read More
January 24, 2012

Answerings Readers’ Questions About the FAFSA

Now that we’re in the thick of FAFSA season, I wanted to answer some questions on my college blog that I’ve been getting about financial aid forms. If you have your own questions, please leave them in the comment box below. Lynn O. Mom’s question: Try as I might I still can’t get my hands around the whole financial aid...
Read More
October 13, 2011

How To Determine Your EFC

In my last blog, I talked about why it’s important to know what your EFC or Expected Family Contribution is. Here is the post: What Is Your Expected Family Contribution? Today, I’m going to show you how you can get a preliminary EFC, which is not as tough as you might assume. You just need to use an online EFC...
Read More
October 12, 2011

What is Your Expected Family Contribution?

What is Your Expected Family Contribution? Do you know what the term Expected Family Contribution or EFC means? Most of you probably don’t so I’m devoting the next couple of college blog posts to explaining what an Expected Family Contribution or EFC is and why it’s so important. If you file for financial aid through the Free Application for Federal...
Read More
September 8, 2011

Applying to College: Can You Afford to Be an Early Bird?

If you missed it, I wrote a post earlier in the week about applying early decision to colleges: The Odds of Applying Early Decision I assumed this post would lead to more questions on this issue and sure enough I got an email from a mom with a question that I thought was worth sharing with you. Here is what...
Read More
August 15, 2011

4 Stubborn Financial Aid Myths

I think the most misconceptions that people have about the college process revolve around financial aid. With the college admission season about to head into high gear, today I want to share the four financial aid myths that are probably the most common. Here are four of the most stubborn financial aid myths. 1. I make too much money to...
Read More
June 19, 2011

Can This Family Afford Syracuse University?

When students are shopping for colleges, admission representatives typically urge them to ignore the sticker price. Here’s what these college reps routinely say:  We’ve got lots of financial aid and scholarships. Just APPLY! I was reminded of why applying blind is such a reckless strategy when a mom contacted me after her husband heard me give a college talk recently...
Read More
March 16, 2011

Making Our Last College Payment!

My husband and I reached a milestone yesterday. We made our last payment for our daughter’s bachelors degree. Caitlin is graduating from Juniata College in May and we’ve managed to pay for her degree — she double majored in business and Spanish — without taking out loans.  I should have bought a bottle of champagne to celebrate, but my husband...
Read More