Barbara Cooke, M.A.
Career Counselor and Author

Parent’s Guide to College and Careers
How to Help, Not Hover (JIST 2010)
...
Reality Check
 Over 70 % of high school graduates will

enroll in college within two years of high
school graduation
 Le...
Reality Check
 Only 60 % of students who start college at a

4-year school will complete a degree
 40 % of students will...
Reality Check
 High school success does not equal

college readiness!
 Three kinds of preparedness
1. Academic preparedn...
Academic Preparedness
 What are your child’s basic skills in

reading, writing, math, science?
 Take the ACT or Compass ...
ACT College Readiness Benchmarks
 ACT test scores needed for 50% chance of

earning a B or better or 75 % chance of
earni...
Academic Preparedness
 College level classes vs. remedial classes
 Remedial (developmental) classes are one of

the fast...
Academic Preparedness
 Time management in college
 Two hours of outside study for each one

credit hour in class
 15 co...
Academic Preparedness
 Writing skills
 In college, your child will expected to:
 Write numerous short and long papers i...
Academic Preparedness
 Math skills
 College algebra is the minimum degree

requirement
 Remedial/developmental math cou...
Social/Emotional Preparedness
 A more subjective assessment
 How mature is your child?
 The three “R’s”
 Responsibilit...
Responsibility
 Turning in assignments on time
 Showing up for work and doing a good job
 Completing household chores

...
Resilience
 Taking criticism well
 Realistic expectations of self
 The ability to bounce back after setbacks

 Self-ca...
Resourcefulness
 Problem solving skills
 Connecting with other people to identify

resources
 Talking with instructors
...
Honor the “Red Flags”
 Address your concerns about study

skills, time management, and responsibility
while your child is...
Financial Preparedness
 How are you and your child going to pay for

college?
 U.S. student loan debt now exceeds credit...
Financial Preparedness
Four sources of money for college:
1. Grants and scholarships a student earns or
is awarded
2. Coll...
Financial Preparedness
 Total Cost of College (COA)
(tuition, fees, room, board, transportation, misc. living
expenses)

...
Gift Aid
 Scholarships and grants you don’t have to

pay back
 Scholarships: awarded for merit
 Grants: awarded based o...
Scholarships and Grants
 Federal aid: studentaid.ed.gov
 Your state Department of Higher Education

website– state grant...
Family Income Used for College
 Tuition payments by parents
 Student earnings from work-study and part-

time jobs
 Imp...
Student and Parent Loans
 More families are borrowing for college
 Both parents and students need to know

their “debt t...
Parent Loans for College
 Parent guideline:

Your total household debt payments all
your debts -- including mortgage
paym...
Parent Loans for College
 Family income:
 $100,000/year
 Total debt on mortgage, car

payments, credit cards, other deb...
Student Loans for College
 8% rule
 Your child’s total student loan payments

should not exceed 8% of monthly gross
inco...
Student Loan Repayment
Total Student Loans

Annual Salary Needed

 $10,000

 $17,262/ year

 $15,000

 $25,893/year

...
Student Loans for College
 8% rule connects amount to borrow with

the student’s marketability after graduation
 Some ma...
College Majors and Jobs
 Some majors develop specific job skills:

engineering, nursing, education etc.
 Most majors dev...
College Majors and Jobs
 Begin exploring careers in high school
 Career exploration vs. career decision-

making
 Under...
How to Insure Preparedness
 Take rigorous courses in high school
 Four years of college-prep math
 Writing-intensive co...
Web Resources for Parents
http://guidetocollegeandcareers.blogspot.com
 Career information websites

 Parent’s Guide to ...
Final Thoughts
 Affirm your child’s strengths
 Don’t be afraid to say “No”
 Teach networking
 Learn to let go
Barbara Cooke, M.A.
Career Counselor and Author

Parent’s Guide to College and Careers
How to Help, Not Hover (JIST 2010)
...
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Is Your Child Ready for College? CollegeWeekLive 2014

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  • You need to look at all threeWeak students with poor time-management skills “party out”, strong students can wilt under academic pressure
  • Easiest to assess; standardized measures“grade inflation” – the practice of giving higher grades for academic work than the work meritsYou need an objective assessment – ACT is one; COMPASS through a CC is anotherACT junior year; then work w/HS counselor to strengthen skills
  • Time management is one of the biggest challenges for college freshmen, including strong students in high schoolStudy time outside of classIn high school, a student’s time is structured: 35 hours in a school building, moving from course subject to course subjectIn college: 15 hours is structured; with online courses, even less time is structuredmost work is done outside of class – readings, projects, group work; no “extra credit”Use a planning grid; de-brief after freshman orientation
  • Research paper, at least 10 pages; MLA style guideOnline courses: all communication, including discussions, is in writing; can’t be successful in online courses without being a strong writer
  • Delay in course sequence for a major such as business; can add another year to your total cost of college – tuition, room, board, feesCan limit student loan eligibility junior or student year
  • Unrealistic expectations can be an issue for strong students in high school who face much more competition in college; is a B acceptable? vs. pressure to maintain grades for scholarshipsHomesickness or “friend” sickness
  • Connect with both adults and fellow studentsTeach problem solving skillsTalking to instructors: role modelingAsk: “What have you already tried to resolve this?”“What did you say?”“What are some of the options you see?” “Who have you already talked to?”Be the teacher of self-advocacy skills
  • Don’t let your child get in over her head!Financial literacy
  • Is Your Child Ready for College? CollegeWeekLive 2014

    1. 1. Barbara Cooke, M.A. Career Counselor and Author Parent’s Guide to College and Careers How to Help, Not Hover (JIST 2010) http://guidetocollegeandcareers.blogspot.com
    2. 2. Reality Check  Over 70 % of high school graduates will enroll in college within two years of high school graduation  Less than 50% will complete a Bachelor’s degree or technical career program within six years
    3. 3. Reality Check  Only 60 % of students who start college at a 4-year school will complete a degree  40 % of students will not  The problem is more than choosing the “wrong” college  More students have the expectation of going to college without the preparation to be successful in college
    4. 4. Reality Check  High school success does not equal college readiness!  Three kinds of preparedness 1. Academic preparedness 2. Social/Emotional preparedness 3. Financial preparedness
    5. 5. Academic Preparedness  What are your child’s basic skills in reading, writing, math, science?  Take the ACT or Compass test  Compare scores to ACT College Readiness Benchmarks  A standardized measure
    6. 6. ACT College Readiness Benchmarks  ACT test scores needed for 50% chance of earning a B or better or 75 % chance of earning a C or better in college courses traditionally taken in the first year of college  College composition, college algebra, college biology, and an introductory social science course
    7. 7. Academic Preparedness  College level classes vs. remedial classes  Remedial (developmental) classes are one of the fastest growing segments of higher education  Courses taken in college to bring underprepared students to skill competency of a college freshman  Will cost you time and money
    8. 8. Academic Preparedness  Time management in college  Two hours of outside study for each one credit hour in class  15 college credits: 15 hrs. in class + 30 hrs. of study = 45 hrs. per week needed for school  Add a part-time job 20 hrs./week = 65 hrs.  Homework/outside activities in HS
    9. 9. Academic Preparedness  Writing skills  In college, your child will expected to:  Write numerous short and long papers in all classes, not just English classes  Read unfamiliar material, analyze it and respond to it in writing  Answer essay questions rather than multiple choice questions
    10. 10. Academic Preparedness  Math skills  College algebra is the minimum degree requirement  Remedial/developmental math courses will cost you time and money  Insist on 4 years of college prep math in high school
    11. 11. Social/Emotional Preparedness  A more subjective assessment  How mature is your child?  The three “R’s”  Responsibility  Resilience  Resourcefulness
    12. 12. Responsibility  Turning in assignments on time  Showing up for work and doing a good job  Completing household chores  Following household rules and curfews  Managing money - checking accounts, debit cards, saving for purchases
    13. 13. Resilience  Taking criticism well  Realistic expectations of self  The ability to bounce back after setbacks  Self-care:  Eating right  Exercise  Getting enough rest
    14. 14. Resourcefulness  Problem solving skills  Connecting with other people to identify resources  Talking with instructors  Creating and using a support system  “Helicopter” parents: teach your child to solve the problem, don’t solve it yourself!
    15. 15. Honor the “Red Flags”  Address your concerns about study skills, time management, and responsibility while your child is in high school  Work with your high school counselor to develop an action plan to build skills junior and senior year
    16. 16. Financial Preparedness  How are you and your child going to pay for college?  U.S. student loan debt now exceeds credit card debt – over $830 billion dollars!  College debt is an issue for both of you  Average student debt for graduates: $29,400  Doesn’t include debt of students who leave without a degree
    17. 17. Financial Preparedness Four sources of money for college: 1. Grants and scholarships a student earns or is awarded 2. College savings accounts 3. Monthly family income applied to tuition and living expenses 4. Loans, both student and parent
    18. 18. Financial Preparedness  Total Cost of College (COA) (tuition, fees, room, board, transportation, misc. living expenses)  - Less “Gift Aid” (scholarships and grants that do not have to be repaid  = Out of Pocket Cost of College (pay with college savings, cash, and student/parent loans)
    19. 19. Gift Aid  Scholarships and grants you don’t have to pay back  Scholarships: awarded for merit  Grants: awarded based on need  Outside/institutional scholarships and grants
    20. 20. Scholarships and Grants  Federal aid: studentaid.ed.gov  Your state Department of Higher Education website– state grants, scholarships  College websites  automatic scholarships  competitive scholarships  On average, scholarships and grants cover only 30% of the COA
    21. 21. Family Income Used for College  Tuition payments by parents  Student earnings from work-study and part- time jobs  Important: a work-study award is paid to the student and covers indirect living costs  It does not cover direct costs such as tuition, fees, room and board
    22. 22. Student and Parent Loans  More families are borrowing for college  Both parents and students need to know their “debt threshold”  How much you can borrow and comfortably repay the loan?  How much is too much debt for college?
    23. 23. Parent Loans for College  Parent guideline: Your total household debt payments all your debts -- including mortgage payments, credit cards, car loans and education loans -- shouldn't eat up more than 35% of your gross pay
    24. 24. Parent Loans for College  Family income:  $100,000/year  Total debt on mortgage, car payments, credit cards, other debts:  $25,000/year  Maximum amount to add in loan payments:  $10,000 /year
    25. 25. Student Loans for College  8% rule  Your child’s total student loan payments should not exceed 8% of monthly gross income after college  For $30,000 student loan, payment will be $345/month  Salary needed: $52,000 /year
    26. 26. Student Loan Repayment Total Student Loans Annual Salary Needed  $10,000  $17,262/ year  $15,000  $25,893/year  $20,000  $34,524/year  $25,000  $43,155/year  $30,000  $51,786/year
    27. 27. Student Loans for College  8% rule connects amount to borrow with the student’s marketability after graduation  Some majors command more money in the job market than others  $345/month loan payment will be the same for an English major or engineering major
    28. 28. College Majors and Jobs  Some majors develop specific job skills: engineering, nursing, education etc.  Most majors develop nonspecific, transferable skills: English, psychology, communication studies, biology etc.  For most majors, work experience while in college is the key to employment after college
    29. 29. College Majors and Jobs  Begin exploring careers in high school  Career exploration vs. career decision- making  Understand how different majors play out in the job market  Separate choosing a major from choosing a 1st career  Use career resources once you are on campus
    30. 30. How to Insure Preparedness  Take rigorous courses in high school  Four years of college-prep math  Writing-intensive courses: research papers  Use AP and dual-credit wisely  Explore careers in high school
    31. 31. Web Resources for Parents http://guidetocollegeandcareers.blogspot.com  Career information websites  Parent’s Guide to College and Careers/ How to Help, Not Hover (JIST 2010)  Careers by college major websites  Financial aid (FAFSA4caster)and scholarship links  Links to 4-year college websites
    32. 32. Final Thoughts  Affirm your child’s strengths  Don’t be afraid to say “No”  Teach networking  Learn to let go
    33. 33. Barbara Cooke, M.A. Career Counselor and Author Parent’s Guide to College and Careers How to Help, Not Hover (JIST 2010) http://guidetocollegeandcareers.blogspot.com

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