Are your kids ready for college?

I am absolutely nowhere near the college planning stage for our kids, although my son insists he wants to go to Boston College (as a Boston University alum, I’m personally horrified). However, when we shift into that mode, probably one of the people we will be consulting is Dr. Eileen Antalek, who not only is the wife of a co-worker of my husband, but who specializes in educational consulting. You could ultimately blame her for our decision to move to Grafton, because she gave the schools top marks.

Now, if you’re the parent of a high school student who is considering college, you can take advantage of her educational expertise as well! Trust me — you want an adult besides yourself to tell your child that school choice shouldn’t just be “hey, my best friend is going here and we could be roommates!

Dr. Eileen Antalek of Educational Directions, Inc. will hold a workshop for those parents and students interested in college placement.  This will be an informal session, with time for questions and answers about the college search, selection, and application process.  This is a free session to be held at the North Grafton United Methodist Church on Wednesday, October 29th at 7 p.m.  Reservations must be made by October 27th by calling (508) 870-1515 or email: Light refreshments will be served.

Dr. Antalek has been an educational consultant for thirteen years, with an additional six years served within college communities at Framingham State College and Clark University.  Take advantage of her knowledge and expertise at this session!
Eileen Antalek, Ed.D.
Associate Director, Educational Directions, Inc.
Licensed School Psychologist
Educational Consultant
Learning Disabilities and Written Language Specialist

57 East Main Street Suite 220
Westborough, MA 01581
phone (508) 870-1515, fax (508) 870-1505
APA, CEC, CLD, IDA, Professional Member IECA


9 thoughts on “Are your kids ready for college?

  1. As a Boston College alum, I feel somewhat qualified to put in my two cents re: your son’s potential college choice… my advice would be keep looking. With apologies to fellow alumni, BC is pretty overrated (unless you love football, which I don’t). 🙂

  2. FWIW, I’m not recommending BU these days, either. Not until they start spending less money on board members, or former board members, not to mention a certain ex-president…

    Proud of my BU COM degree, however. Go BU Mafia!

  3. My comment does not address the placement process, but the payment process. The question is “Are you financially prepared to send your child to college?” As a parent of a college student, I was not fully prepared financially to send my child to college. Average cost per year for tuition, room & board, books, and fees $25,000 per year. That figure is based on in-state tuition, multiplied by four, $100,000. These days, students rarely complete their studies in four years. So multiply that by five. Fortunately, I convinced my child to attend community college at an average of $4,000 per year – tuition and books – residing at home. While attending community college she carefully chose classes with credit hours that would transfer to the university of her chosing. After three years at a community college, she was then able to determine her major and the appropriate univerisity. In May, she will graduate from a prestigious college at a savings of $75,000.

    Here’s a fun fact. If you teach your child to play the bagpipes, Monmouth College in Western Illinois offers a limited number of full scholarships to join their Pipe Band.

  4. I’m also a BU alum – COM school, Masters program (go Terriers!).

    This is a very timely article. In the 10/23 BBJ update, there was an article about higher educational debt in Massachusetts.

    For students graduating from a 4-year college in Massachusetts (the assumption is that this study included both public and private schools), 63% of the students are graduating with some debt. The average dept per student is $21,090.

    The price to attend college has skyrocketed over the past 10 to 15 years and this economy will make it harder for the Commonwealth to fund public education at the university level. Which is a shame, as I’m sure more students will be considering their options to attend a Massachusetts community or state college or public university.

  5. If the older kid keeps scoring as high as he has on the MCAS, he’s going to be eligible for the Adams scholarship… assuming it’s survived budget cuts six years from now. And that only covers tuition at a state college — books, housing, various fees (especially at UMass) are still all in play.

    I have no doubt that he’s smart enough to get into, say, MIT (yes, I know that’s not a state college, don’t email me), but worry we won’t be able to pay for it!

  6. Just before my daughter was born I signed up for a Upromise acount. Basically, when you buy certain products a certain fraction of the cost gets routed into an account which in turn can be converted to a 529 plan to be used for college tuition payment. Well, after 4 years we have 150$. If we keep on this pace I think we’ll hit about 600-700$ when she’s 18. Things aren’t looking good.

  7. We have a Fidelity Credit Card where 2 % of our purchases go directly into a 529 plan. It’s the best bonus points we’ve ever gotten and far more practical than my LLBean points. I know that they no longer offer 2% to new customers but I believe they still offer the card. It’s free money – and A LOT more than upromise, and grandparents and others can also get the card and have it sent to your child’s account.

  8. The whole financial piece is very different these days. Even if you complete the FAFSA (which you have to do if you want financial aid), you have to realize that the federal government guidelines now suggest that your children are financially dependent upon you until the age of 24 unless they are married or are in the military. Still, there are sources for scholarships, etc. Working directly with the financial aid departments of your schools of interest is the best way to go!

  9. I am sorry that more parents were unable to attend the free session–one family walked away with about $1800 worth of advice for nothing! And that included information on web sites and services to avoid! Still, I did not realize that the High school was hosting the annual Halloween concert that night when I scheduled this session. For those parents who would have come otherwise, I do what I can pro bono on my time, so please understand that I cannot do this type of thing very often. This is my business, but it is also my free time, something that is precious to me! So if you lack funds to seek help during business hours, keep a watch in the local papers for sessions held by me or by other consultants. I generally advertise only in the Grafton News (and now through the Grafton blog, thanks to Jennifer!), and my pastor, Linda Stetter, contacts members of the Marlborough United Methodist Church with which we are affiliated. Other consultants may use other town blogs, the TAB papers, and/or the Worcester T&G. So stay tuned!

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