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Picture this. Your daughter worked hard throughout high school. She earned good grades while taking a full schedule of challenging courses. She spent many hours preparing for college entrance exams, visited numerous college campuses and participated in extracurricular activities. Finally, after applying to a few colleges, she was accepted to her dream school. After four years, she graduated and went on to graduate law school. One year later, she is now applying for a job at Starbucks and has student loan debt totaling well over $100,000.
Do you think, “This can't possibly happen to my child!”
Every year, students and their parents spend countless hours going through the stressful college admissions process called in the hope of getting into a good college. The truth is, in today's economy, getting into college isn't the problem. The real questions are:
College is an extremely important, expensive investment, and families need to treat it that way. Knowing how the college system works will help you avoid costly mistakes, as well as maximize your college experience.
The first step of your journey is to get your student in the right college for the lowest possible cost. The second step is to position your student for success after college, by achieving success during college. These steps are exactly what Ontrak 101 can help you complete.
It is nearly impossible to know in advance how much a school will actually cost, or which school to attend, or how to succeed there. We have broken down the complex, confusing “college process” into easy-to-follow steps to help you: choose the right college, get the best price, and guide you through college to career success.
Ontrak 101 holds your hand all the way through college graduation, and makes a previously overwhelming process manageable and easy to navigate. We're there when you need us!
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|Section 1: First Things First|
A Lesson to be Learned EarlyPreview
Nothing Personal. It's Just Business.Preview
College Sticker Prices Are MeaninglessPreview
What Does Affordable Mean to YouPreview
How to Calculate the Real Cost of CollegePreview
|Section 2: Choosing a School|
How to Begin Your College Search
The College Visit - How to Maximize your College Investment
Narrowing Down Your College List
|Section 3: Addmissions|
AP Scores & Class Rigor
GPA and Class Rank
Standardized Tests (ACT & SAT)
Diversification of the Student
What To Do If You Are Wait-Listed
|Section 4: Paying for College ~ Financial Aid|
Financial Aid Basics
Financial Aid Needs Analysis Formula
EFC ~ Expected Family Contribution
Financial Aid Is Not Welfare
State Financial Aid
Divorce and the FAFSA
|Section 5: Paying For College ~ Scholarships & Loans|
How to Win Scholarships Part 1
How to Win Scholarships Part 2
10 Scholarships Do's & Don'ts
Federal Parent Loans
Federal Student Loans
|Section 6: Paying for College - Negotiating Your Aid Package|
A View of the Financial Aid Office Part 1
A View of the Financial Aid Office Part 2
Enrollment Management Office
Financial Aid Leveraging
Learn from unbiased experts in the field to bridge the gap between school and parent.
I have been fascinated by the college process since I first began my college search over 15 years ago, and then fully encompassing myself with the ins-and-outs when I realized in my second year of college, I wasn't doing what was the best course for my life nor was really anyone around me.
I simply wanted a degree and didn't put much thought into how that was going to impact my life. Like many of my friends from high school and even more people I was in school with, did not truly understand: the ramifications of the decisions I was making, how much debt I was going to be in, how long it would take for me to graduate, what job was my ultimate goal post graduation, and how much I would make in that field.
I worked closely with my guidance counselor in high school and talked with my parents about my future. I had done things the "right way" to achieve my goals but something in the process wasn't working.
After earning my Bachelor's of Education and then completing my Master's of Education, I started my teaching career working part time with my dad and brother starting Ontrak to College. Since committing full time to my passion, we have helped thousands of local families save money for college using our time tested and proven methodology.
We held workshops at libraries and schools trying to get our message out about the major sinkhole college can be for many families. It was doing a workshop for parents at a local high school we recognized a major deficiency facing families, who like me, believed they have done everything the right way for college and yet still face the same reality.
The problem is guidance councilors are unable to factor in the second half of making the college decision: HOW MUCH YOUR FAMILY CAN AFFORD FOR COLLEGE.