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5 Steps to Take After You Submit the FAFSA

Now that you have submitted the FAFSA, what’s next? Even though the federal deadline to submit the ‘23/24 FAFSA is 6/30/2024, you will want to submit the FAFSA as early as possible, especially for first-time freshmen. The Department of Education released the FAFSA on October 1st and many families have already completed it or are on the cusp of getting it completed and submitted. Submitting the FAFSA is just step one in the process. Here are 5 steps to take…

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freshman year checklist

Freshman Year Checklist

As your child enters high school, you may be wondering about their transition from middle school. Questions may be swirling in your head: Will they ease into their new schedule? Will they make friends?  But how much should your budding high schooler think about college in freshman year? Is it too early to start planning? In a word, no but this “no” comes with some additional nos. Should you pepper your freshman with deep questions about their plans after high…

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How To Finish College Early

With so many things to juggle in life these days, students want to know how to finish college early. Is it possible? Yes, but it takes a bit of planning with the correct information to guide you. There are many choices and paths available - you just need to decide how to get all your ducks in a row for which ones are best for you and make a plan.  How To Finish College Early - A Guide On Different…

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EFC Too High?

EFC Too High? We’re Here To Help

By now your student has probably received award letters from the colleges to which they’ve been accepted and you might be thinking, “Wow. The bottom line looks a lot higher than we thought. Why is my expected family contribution so high?” You’re not alone. Very often a family’s expected family contribution (EFC) is more than they had anticipated, but this isn’t the time to panic - it’s time to appeal. Remember that a college’s first offer is not usually its…

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The after effects of the pandemic on students and their mental health 

Most families were happy to have their kids back in school full time this year, but many also had anxiety about their kids getting sick. Trying to balance everything mentally has been a struggle for most families. But, most importantly, how about the anxiety of students? Some kids were fully remote last year or hybrid and their lives changed drastically - emotionally and socially. Sure, being nervous the first day of school is normal, but is there anxiety that’s not…

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How to Manage College Stress

Our fast-paced, technology-driven world coupled with the recent global pandemic has pushed our student’s mental stress levels to the limits.  Our mental health is just as important as our physical health and learning to manage stress will serve you well throughout life.  The college experience is chock full of stressors and major life decisions.  The lengthy reading, research, studying, exams, and deadlines can all be extremely stress-inducing. Develop strong coping skills Coping skills involve the management and regulation of your…

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How to Succeed in Online School

Online higher education has always been an option, but for those of us that decided to pursue degrees mostly (or fully) in-person, 2020. As someone who just finished my final semester of college online, I am familiar with the challenges and the disappointments. Here’s my advice on how to handle taking your classes online.  1. Create a space for school  If you can, avoid doing school work in your bed. I know it’s tempting to watch lectures from the comfort…

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My College Planning Team Social Distancing Guidelines

MCPT is committed to following or exceeding CDC protocols as we slowly begin to resume in-person meetings with our clients and prospective clients.  Beginning June 1, 2020, in-person meetings between our clients and financial advisors may be held in the conference rooms at our Naperville office — if both the client and financial advisor are comfortable meeting in person. Alternatively, phone appointments remain an option.  All meetings between clients and our client service managers or other professionals on our team will…

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Recommended Gap Year Reads

For hundreds of years, tales have been spun about the adventures of travelers in distant lands. Memoirs of these travels serve to inform – and inspire- its readers. The following list compiles travelogues written in the 20th century by authors as famous as Che Guevara to former 30 Rock producer Steve Hely. They range from serious to hilarious, but they all describe challenging yourself in a foreign location. Even if that location is our own Appalachian Trail! These books just may help you decide where…

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Navigating Senior Year: 5 Things to Know

Giddy with excitement and feeling pretty amazing, your child is in their senior year. You are left standing at the curb while they are on top of their world. The next several months are all about parties, prom and their 25 best friends. For parents navigating senior year, you may feel as if your relationship has changed, and this can leave even the most confident parent feeling a bit uneasy. The process of breaking away that begins during senior year is…

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