How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby HomerJ » Wed Jan 30, 2013 2:52 pm

jon-nyc wrote:
HomerJ wrote:Do other professions really care about what school you went to after 10+ years? Once you've got a lot of experience under your belt, does the school really matter anymore? Do people really ask 45 year olds what their GPA in college was?


Of course not. The main advantage is getting into the role in the first place. Once you've been at Goldman for three years, no one cares where you went to school. But you probably aren't getting an interview at Goldman if you went to San Diego State. Google is a meritocracy from what I hear, but they recruit at Stanford, not at Kansas State. etc. etc.


I happen to know several people who got degrees in Kansas and Missouri who now work at Google. Google may not recruit at Kansas State for kids out of college, but the smart kids from Kansas State who got a job at Sprint or H&R Block or Garmin in Kansas City, and got 5-10 years of experience under their belt are certainly welcome to apply at Google. At that point Google doesn't care where they went to school, just how smart they are and what coding skills they can bring to the table.
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby jon-nyc » Wed Jan 30, 2013 2:57 pm

off-topic comment deleted by poster
Last edited by jon-nyc on Wed Jan 30, 2013 5:01 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby Rodc » Wed Jan 30, 2013 3:03 pm

jon-nyc wrote:As Aesop taught us, a common psychological defense mechanism is to convince yourself that the grapes you could not (or did not) reach are sour.


There is some truth in that.

But goes both ways, parents who have to justify why they spent so much money. Or parents who have to justify living through their kids (which I see often where I live).

And sometimes it is neither, simply being the truth.

Either way it is a content free ad hominem attack that sheds no real light on the subject.
We live a world with knowledge of the future markets has less than one significant figure. And people will still and always demand answers to three significant digits.
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby Random Poster » Wed Jan 30, 2013 3:09 pm

texasdiver wrote:Someone interested in petroleum engineering should be looking at schools like Texas, Texas A&M, Colorado School of Mines, Penn State, Tulsa, and Stanford.


Don't forget about Oklahoma!

+1 on the remainder of your post.
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby Dave76 » Wed Jan 30, 2013 4:55 pm

Rodc wrote:
But goes both ways, parents who have to justify why they spent so much money. Or parents who have to justify living through their kids (which I see often where I live).



Trophy kids, helicopter parenting.
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby jon-nyc » Wed Jan 30, 2013 4:58 pm

Rodc wrote:Either way it is a content free ad hominem attack that sheds no real light on the subject.


Well, it certainly isn't content free (you yourself indicated there's truth in it). And I think it does shed light on many of the responses in this thread. But it probably doesn't belong here. I've deleted the comment.
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby lightheir » Wed Jan 30, 2013 10:00 pm

HomerJ wrote:
jon-nyc wrote:
HomerJ wrote:Do other professions really care about what school you went to after 10+ years? Once you've got a lot of experience under your belt, does the school really matter anymore? Do people really ask 45 year olds what their GPA in college was?


Of course not. The main advantage is getting into the role in the first place. Once you've been at Goldman for three years, no one cares where you went to school. But you probably aren't getting an interview at Goldman if you went to San Diego State. Google is a meritocracy from what I hear, but they recruit at Stanford, not at Kansas State. etc. etc.


I happen to know several people who got degrees in Kansas and Missouri who now work at Google. Google may not recruit at Kansas State for kids out of college, but the smart kids from Kansas State who got a job at Sprint or H&R Block or Garmin in Kansas City, and got 5-10 years of experience under their belt are certainly welcome to apply at Google. At that point Google doesn't care where they went to school, just how smart they are and what coding skills they can bring to the table.


This is true in all fields. A rising star who doesn't necessarily have ivy creds will go far.

However, don't discount the value of that ivy education. It can open a lot of doors down the road - even ones that you might not even deserve. I've seen this happen a fair amount of times, actually. (Of course, just be cause it CAN open those doors doesn't mean you should, nor does it guarantee that those doors will remain open.)
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby TomatoTomahto » Wed Jan 30, 2013 11:24 pm

Sometimes it a matter of meeting someone at college that opens doors later. I have a neighbor, not the sharpest tool in the box, whose career has consisted of following his college roommate from one company to the next. Nice work if you can get it.

My guess is that you probably make more "influential" friends at elite schools.

That said, I might be an old romantic, but I think college isn't just about career opportunities, but is also about the joy of discourse, learning, being around quick-witted people, etc.
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby tphp99 » Wed Jan 30, 2013 11:40 pm

Rodc wrote:
Too many kids here are way stressed out, which happens when mom and dad believe if you don't get into Harvard, Stanford, MIT etc it is a truly life changing disaster.


That's not normal?
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby HomerJ » Thu Jan 31, 2013 9:37 am

tphp99 wrote:
Rodc wrote:
Too many kids here are way stressed out, which happens when mom and dad believe if you don't get into Harvard, Stanford, MIT etc it is a truly life changing disaster.


That's not normal?


No, that's not normal.
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby Rodc » Thu Jan 31, 2013 5:40 pm

jon-nyc wrote:
Rodc wrote:Either way it is a content free ad hominem attack that sheds no real light on the subject.


Well, it certainly isn't content free (you yourself indicated there's truth in it). And I think it does shed light on many of the responses in this thread. But it probably doesn't belong here. I've deleted the comment.


it is content free in that it contains no facts and contains no logic; it merely speculates on motivations of people you do not agree with. This type of response is generally brought out when one is losing an argument, has no facts or logic that can bolster your argument. It is good of you to delete it.
We live a world with knowledge of the future markets has less than one significant figure. And people will still and always demand answers to three significant digits.
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby Rodc » Thu Jan 31, 2013 5:42 pm

tphp99 wrote:
Rodc wrote:
Too many kids here are way stressed out, which happens when mom and dad believe if you don't get into Harvard, Stanford, MIT etc it is a truly life changing disaster.


That's not normal?


Seems to be normal here, and both unfortunate and unhealthy.

Some stress is ok and goes with the age, but it can be over done.
We live a world with knowledge of the future markets has less than one significant figure. And people will still and always demand answers to three significant digits.
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby jon-nyc » Thu Jan 31, 2013 5:46 pm

Rodc wrote:
jon-nyc wrote:
Rodc wrote:Either way it is a content free ad hominem attack that sheds no real light on the subject.


Well, it certainly isn't content free (you yourself indicated there's truth in it). And I think it does shed light on many of the responses in this thread. But it probably doesn't belong here. I've deleted the comment.


it is content free in that it contains no facts and contains no logic; it merely speculates on motivations of people you do not agree with. This type of response is generally brought out when one is losing an argument, has no facts or logic that can bolster your argument. It is good of you to delete it.


It indeed contained a fact about Aesop as well as an observation about human nature with which few people would disagree. Had I directed the comment at anyone in particular, then you would have had a point about speculation about motivations.
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby Rodc » Thu Jan 31, 2013 5:59 pm

One of the challenges it seems to me, having fielded a call from family friend looking for advice to help get her son into a particular top university just yesterday (and entirely unclear I can really tell her much she does not already know), is that Stanford, Harvard, MIT, etc really are special in many ways. Her son has a free ride at a near top school, but really wants to go to one school in particular. His parents can swing it, just barely but $200K would be a real burden. I believe he really really wants to go, has his heart set on it, but how much should one spend on that sort of teenage dream when they have a free ride in front of them?

But it is a real accomplishment and an honor to get into one of these schools. Once you do go and do get that degree that is an accomplishment no one can take away. Even if you are not a star among stars (and a kid that gets in but is not offered merit funding likely will not be a star) and in the end it does not lead to a better career, you keep that honor inside. But is that honor worth $200K, when you can get an excellent education for free? When that money can be used for grad school instead? I can understand how a parent could really struggle with that question.

While I think upper middle class parents ought to make sure their kids can go to collage without a lot of debt (supposing they are hard working decent students in high school), should they really feel obligated to pay that kind of money? Any kid who can get into Stanford, Harvard, MIT, can get massive scholarships to lesser but still excellent schools.

First world problems to be sure, but I can see the difficulty. It is not just a dollars and sense proposition.
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby MnD » Thu Jan 31, 2013 6:18 pm

Rodc wrote:
tphp99 wrote:
Rodc wrote:
Too many kids here are way stressed out, which happens when mom and dad believe if you don't get into Harvard, Stanford, MIT etc it is a truly life changing disaster.


That's not normal?


Seems to be normal here, and both unfortunate and unhealthy.

Some stress is ok and goes with the age, but it can be over done.


The U of Chicago recruiter assigned to us said it was like night and day with recruiting east coast kids versus kids from states like Colorado.
Colorado kids - he gets an application, hopefully one visit (often not until after an acceptance offer) then doesn't hear anything until the kid decides to go or not.
With east coast kids he's typically besieged by repeated calls and emails from students, parents, and often both in-school and for-hire college placement counselors.
He said with the western states, it's a real challenge to establish any sort of a dialog with prospects, while with the east it's just the opposite problem. :mrgreen:
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby Rodc » Thu Jan 31, 2013 6:45 pm

MnD wrote:
Rodc wrote:
tphp99 wrote:
Rodc wrote:
Too many kids here are way stressed out, which happens when mom and dad believe if you don't get into Harvard, Stanford, MIT etc it is a truly life changing disaster.


That's not normal?


Seems to be normal here, and both unfortunate and unhealthy.

Some stress is ok and goes with the age, but it can be over done.


The U of Chicago recruiter assigned to us said it was like night and day with recruiting east coast kids versus kids from states like Colorado.
Colorado kids - he gets an application, hopefully one visit (often not until after an acceptance offer) then doesn't hear anything until the kid decides to go or not.
With east coast kids he's typically besieged by repeated calls and emails from students, parents, and often both in-school and for-hire college placement counselors.
He said with the western states, it's a real challenge to establish any sort of a dialog with prospects, while with the east it's just the opposite problem. :mrgreen:


Did he say which approach is more helpful, or does it not matter at all? If you ever have a chance to ask let us know. Might be interesting.
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby FedGuy » Thu Jan 31, 2013 9:00 pm

Rodc wrote:(and a kid that gets in but is not offered merit funding likely will not be a star)


Keep in mind that the Ivies, at least, don't offer merit funding.
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby Rodc » Thu Jan 31, 2013 9:25 pm

FedGuy wrote:
Rodc wrote:(and a kid that gets in but is not offered merit funding likely will not be a star)


Keep in mind that the Ivies, at least, don't offer merit funding.


My bad and I stand corrected. I'm used to dealing with grad students from one of these schools (either while students or recent grads) who either have funding from an employer (in some cases) or research funding of one sort or another.

I take back any and all aspersions I inadvertently tossed regarding my acquaintance's son. :oops:

Still a tough choice, $0 vs $200K.
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby Rodc » Thu Jan 31, 2013 9:49 pm

Also,

I should be careful about overly bold statements of who will and who will not prove to be great.

Sometimes kids come from behind to win races.

And if my mom reads this thread she would would be tempted to tell you not too many of my high school teachers would have laid favorable odds on my eventual success.

The friend I mentioned above, in the same phone call about her son told me of the many hours sitting on the back deck of my sister's house where they marveled and laughed at the success I've had professionally (not a star on top of the world by any means but pretty good and better than anyone in high school expected) and in town life (vice chair of the town's finance committee, chairman of the school committee).

You do have to pay attention to the odds, but odd are not individual destiny.
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby beachplum » Thu Jan 31, 2013 10:10 pm

I have no shame in that I never expected my daughters to pay anything for their undergrad education at a pretty pricey out-of-state public university (thank goodness they did receive some grant/relatives help). More then that I never even dictated to them what they could or couldn't major in. Now I'm helping one with grad school and the other is looking into it, with the plan being that they pay me back when they are done if I still want the money , though if I don't need it I will donate it to their IRAs.

I don't know why I torture myself and continue to read these threads that go off topic and end up discussing how to get your child into an IVY as if it were the most important thing in today's world to be so self-absorbed. I do know that some relatives of mine (one is a harvard grad) , both doctors at a top hospital, have 2 children who have dropped out of college--one after 7 years and one who goes off and on over the past 2.5. Both grew up getting the very best pre-school thru 12 grade education at some of the best private schools money can buy.

I have no more words of wisdom to contribute to this subject other then to pay attention to the individual needs of your child, do what hopefully is right for them and what you can reasonably afford.
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby reggiesimpson » Fri Feb 01, 2013 10:08 am

beachplum wrote:I have no shame in that I never expected my daughters to pay anything for their undergrad education at a pretty pricey out-of-state public university (thank goodness they did receive some grant/relatives help). More then that I never even dictated to them what they could or couldn't major in. Now I'm helping one with grad school and the other is looking into it, with the plan being that they pay me back when they are done if I still want the money , though if I don't need it I will donate it to their IRAs.

I don't know why I torture myself and continue to read these threads that go off topic and end up discussing how to get your child into an IVY as if it were the most important thing in today's world to be so self-absorbed. I do know that some relatives of mine (one is a harvard grad) , both doctors at a top hospital, have 2 children who have dropped out of college--one after 7 years and one who goes off and on over the past 2.5. Both grew up getting the very best pre-school thru 12 grade education at some of the best private schools money can buy.

I have no more words of wisdom to contribute to this subject other then to pay attention to the individual needs of your child, do what hopefully is right for them and what you can reasonably afford.

+1
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby Grt2bOutdoors » Fri Feb 01, 2013 10:23 am

Rodc wrote:Also,

I should be careful about overly bold statements of who will and who will not prove to be great.

Sometimes kids come from behind to win races.

And if my mom reads this thread she would would be tempted to tell you not too many of my high school teachers would have laid favorable odds on my eventual success.

The friend I mentioned above, in the same phone call about her son told me of the many hours sitting on the back deck of my sister's house where they marveled and laughed at the success I've had professionally (not a star on top of the world by any means but pretty good and better than anyone in high school expected) and in town life (vice chair of the town's finance committee, chairman of the school committee).

You do have to pay attention to the odds, but odd are not individual destiny.


+1 - You aren't the only one, some of my high school teachers thought the same of me. Never underestimate.

@Beachplum - plus 1,000.
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby HomerJ » Fri Feb 01, 2013 11:36 am

Rodc wrote:Still a tough choice, $0 vs $200K.


That''s a ridiculously easy choice.
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby fishingmn » Fri Feb 01, 2013 11:42 am

Since my grandfather paid for my college I've always had the notion that I'd cover it.

Therefore, we agreed to cover 100% of tuition & room/board for 4 years at the state school rate (where we went). They cover living expenses and books. First child did just that. Second child chose a different school route and he will have $10-15k in loans.
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby skyvue » Fri Feb 01, 2013 11:53 am

HomerJ wrote:
Rodc wrote:Still a tough choice, $0 vs $200K.


That''s a ridiculously easy choice.


I agree. There would really be no choice in this situation.
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby epilnk » Fri Feb 01, 2013 2:01 pm

Rodc wrote:But it is a real accomplishment and an honor to get into one of these schools. Once you do go and do get that degree that is an accomplishment no one can take away. Even if you are not a star among stars (and a kid that gets in but is not offered merit funding likely will not be a star) and in the end it does not lead to a better career, you keep that honor inside. But is that honor worth $200K, when you can get an excellent education for free? When that money can be used for grad school instead? I can understand how a parent could really struggle with that question.

First world problems to be sure, but I can see the difficulty. It is not just a dollars and sense proposition.

I got my graduate degree from a school with a name. The name was irrelevant to my choice of school, as I was looking for a specific research focus. I am happy with the education I got, since it matched what I was looking for and the department was excellent, however as a teaching assistant I did not perceive any superiority in either the students or the education in general that would justify the reputation of the school. And yet 20 years later I continue to marvel at the impact that name has. Few people know (or care, or should care) about the aspects of my scientific background that matter, but I can visibly see strangers readjusting their opinion of me if the identity of my grad school comes up.

Is that worth $200K? Not to me; in fact I prefer to not mention the name school at all. But for someone who actually has that $200K available to spend, and values the reputation, and intends to go in a direction where the reputation matters, maybe yes. Even in my own field, where the name doesn't impress insiders, it still fast-tracks a CV through the HR prescreen and onto the desk of the person who matters. So while I don't value the name myself and would never pay such a differential, I cannot deny that it comes with significant benefits.
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby Taz » Sat Feb 02, 2013 10:45 am

For the OP: At a minimum, my kid will work a small part-time job to pay for spending money beyond tuition/room/board/books. We'll pay for an in-state degree. This will result in no loans & his small UTMA (that we never should have started - gee thanks USPA-IRA) upon graduation.

Now, to jump into the fray.

epilnk wrote:
Rodc wrote:....But is that honor worth $200K, when you can get an excellent education for free? When that money can be used for grad school instead? I can understand how a parent could really struggle with that question.

First world problems to be sure, but I can see the difficulty. It is not just a dollars and sense proposition.


..... So while I don't value the name myself and would never pay such a differential, I cannot deny that it comes with significant benefits.


For many, the choice of State U or Ivy isn't the be all or end all. I'd like to think my son could get in - a couple certainly filled our mail box/inbox - but reputation is fleeting unless you want to be in politics, big finance, big law, academia, or use the secret handshake to open doors regardless of actual ability. That's not just an Ivy thing, but a truism about any school with an elitist or storied past. There is a future & life beyond the east coast. Off my soap box.

One's desired major often limits where they can go. My son wants nuke engineering which narrows the field considerably. Ivy league? Could care less. I think that other middle/upper-middle income folks like us throw a lot more into the mix which makes things messy.

We are dealing with:
- So do you pay minimal out-of-pocket (considering you have most of the cost covered in prepaid & 529 account) for excellent flagship State U, be the out-of-state near-full ride scholarship guy at a lesser quality school, or pay the additional $27k a year for a top 5 out-of-state engineering school with greater co-op availability (increasing likelihood of job upon graduation)?
- Does he go to flagship school then "better" grad school? (why am I worried about his grad school?)
- Are you prepared to do this for both kids?
- Can you forgo 7 years of retirement savings/drawing from taxable holdings?
- Should we then go back to two working parents?
- Will you regret decision when kid changes major to sociology, anthropology, or gender studies?

I'll be glad when we come to some resolution.
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby Yanksin2013 » Sat Feb 02, 2013 11:16 am

mlipps wrote:I graduated college in 2011. I worked about 20 hours a week while in school, plus around 5 hours a week of volunteering and graduated with a respectable, if not spectacular GPA. I've had no trouble finding a job since. I worked on campus jobs while in school, which meant I got experience in a professional office setting, rather than working retail, etc. (not that there's anything wrong w/that, just a different skill set). Personally, I think it'd be doing your kids a disservice not to expect them to work. The friends I had in college who didn't work while we were in school have really struggled to get a job since graduating. When you're hired for your first job out of college, your GPA (depending on major of course) probably matters for maybe 20% of the consideration and your work experience closer to 50% (with the rest being made up of having a decent resume/cover letter). I think you have to have a balance of course, but your kids need to work to have a good shot at getting a job in today's world.


You make a great point and I think for most occupations work experience while in school is crucial. I occasionally staff entry level position in software development. The opportunities for someone who worked in an internship or part-time whether they were paid or not gives you a huge leg up on the competition. In my experience many companies won't even consider the candidate who just has the degree regardless of what there GPA is.
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby NorCalDad » Sat Feb 02, 2013 11:26 am

For us it may be a matter of what we can pay rather than what we expect our kids to pay. We're in the gray area between middle class and wealthy, which means we make too much for financial aid, too little to give our kids a full ride without seriously reducing our retirement savings over the long term. I expect our kids to take on some debt (but not crushing debt), find a campus job, pursue scholarships and have us pay the rest. Maybe because that's what I did, but also because I don't think we'll have a choice.

I find it hard to plan for 15-18 years down the road because it's hard to predict what the college financial game will look like then. I don't know how colleges can continue down the bloated financial path they've been on, but I'm sure people said this 20 years ago. The online learning materials coming out of the elite schools like Stanford and MIT give me hope because they've been so impressive that I have to think they will become a part of cost containment down the road.
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby sscritic » Sat Feb 02, 2013 11:27 am

Yanksin2013 wrote:
mlipps wrote: Personally, I think it'd be doing your kids a disservice not to expect them to work. The friends I had in college who didn't work while we were in school have really struggled to get a job since graduating.

You make a great point and I think for most occupations work experience while in school is crucial.

It depends on your career path. Once you have your surgical residency completed, I don't think anyone looks to see how many hours you worked at McDonald's as freshman. And how may years ago was that? 4 + 4 + 6 = 14 years ago. I don't even know what I was doing 14 years ago. Maybe I was working at McDonald's.
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby 555 » Sat Feb 02, 2013 11:40 am

sscritic wrote:"It depends on your career path. Once you have your surgical residency completed, I don't think anyone looks to see how many hours you worked at McDonald's as freshman. And how may years ago was that? 4 + 4 + 6 = 14 years ago. I don't even know what I was doing 14 years ago. Maybe I was working at McDonald's."

You worked at McDonald's? Wow! Now I have more respect for your posts. :happy
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby NorCalDad » Sat Feb 02, 2013 11:43 am

On the Ivy thing, I have one of those pieces of paper, and I'd say many bright kids can do as well going to a top in-state public school. If you work in a field that requires another degree, your graduate school matters much more, so I'd just make certain the undergrad is good enough that it has a track record of sending kids to the top graduate programs.

I think my kids will have to justify the extra cost if they want to go to private school since our UCs are such good public schools. I don't think I'd be too interested in them going to a private school that rates below the UCs unless they were getting enough scholarship money to make it less expensive.
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby sscritic » Sat Feb 02, 2013 11:50 am

555 wrote:
sscritic wrote:"It depends on your career path. Once you have your surgical residency completed, I don't think anyone looks to see how many hours you worked at McDonald's as freshman. And how may years ago was that? 4 + 4 + 6 = 14 years ago. I don't even know what I was doing 14 years ago. Maybe I was working at McDonald's."

You worked at McDonald's? Wow! Now I have more respect for your posts. :happy

Which would you give better odds to, that I completed a surgical residency or that I worked at McDonald's? I would put both very close to zero.

I did work at a fruit cocktail factory hauling trash, specifically peach pits, both from the peach pitting machines and from the ladies working the line to remove the bits and pieces left by the machines. I even got my union card. Teamsters local whatever (it's been 50 years). What Teamsters have to do with peach pits, I never figured out. Peach pit trash hauling is as relevant to a professional career as anything else I can think of.

P.S. Guess why I got the job over all the unemployed people standing outside waiting for the hiring boss to pick from the crowd? I was attending an elite university. It worked 50 years ago, and I have no reason to think things have changed that much since.
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby sscritic » Sat Feb 02, 2013 11:52 am

NorCalDad wrote:I think my kids will have to justify the extra cost if they want to go to private school since our UCs are such good public schools. I don't think I'd be too interested in them going to a private school that rates below the UCs unless they were getting enough scholarship money to make it less expensive.

Stanford can be cheaper than UC Berkeley. It was 30 years ago for a friend of a friend who had one at each. My guess is that it still might be true.
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby NorCalDad » Sat Feb 02, 2013 12:04 pm

sscritic wrote:
NorCalDad wrote:I think my kids will have to justify the extra cost if they want to go to private school since our UCs are such good public schools. I don't think I'd be too interested in them going to a private school that rates below the UCs unless they were getting enough scholarship money to make it less expensive.

Stanford can be cheaper than UC Berkeley. It was 30 years ago for a friend of a friend who had one at each. My guess is that it still might be true.

Emphasis on can be cheaper. If your household income is below $100k, that may be even more true today for Stanford and the Ivies. If your household income is $175k, probably not the case.

I have less problem spending the extra money for a private school that rates above the UCs if it makes sense for our kids. I just wouldn't shell out extra money for a sub-elite private school since they can get better value at a UC.
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby livesoft » Sat Feb 02, 2013 1:11 pm

Did any parents reading this who had child(ren) go to college have money for their child(ren)'s needed college expenses, but then decided not to spend the money on college and made the child(ren) come up with the money themselves? I'm saying the money was needed and not replaced by grants or scholarships.
It's all about short-term opportunistic rebalancing due to a short-term change in one's asset allocation, uh, I mean opportunistic rebalancing, uh I mean rebalancing, uh I mean market timing.
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby 555 » Sat Feb 02, 2013 1:14 pm

MnD wrote:
555 wrote:We'll go to FAFSA and calculate EFC (very low five figures). That is what we'll pay. Our children won't pay anything. None of us will get loans.

The EFC is designed to be "affordable", in that you should be able to pay it out of current salary, without saving, and without loans, though it may cut into other things such as retirement saving during those years.

If a university tries to charge more than EFC then just cut that institution off the list.


"I hope that works out for you but it's very common for universities to offer loans as part of the aid package to cover the difference between costs and EFC.
Even worse, many schools will not cover the gap between costs and federal student loans + EFC, leaving only Parent Plus loans or cosigned private loans to cover the gap if students or parents don't have the cash or free cash flow to cover it.

A common myth is that EFC is what households will be expected to pay.
Unless the school has wonderful endowments in general and is generous with handing out those to your student in particular, EFC can be far below your overall liability."


Certainly some universities will try to charge much more than EFC (and some may charge less).

But if your EFC is, say, $15k and your kid gets into Princeton (or similar elite institution) then $15k is what they'll charge you and it's affordable. They meet full need and their price = EFC (approximately). So if you get into one of these institutions, you have a combination of the highest academics and a lowish price tag, so it's a very easy choice to accept.

But if your kid doesn't receive offers from these elite institutions, and instead gets offers from lesser but very good private universities that want to charge, say, $35k (despite having EFC of $15k), then my attitude is why bother with such places. Their price tag conveys a lack of interest in your kid, and they're not the most elite places anyway. Why pay that much?

If your kid doesn't get into the top tier of private universities (Princeton etc.), then it's better to go to a top state university that will charge much less (based on need and merit) than a lesser but very good private university.

Costs matter. Neither you nor your kids should have to go into debt if you make prudent choices.

And when it comes to a graduate degree, they should only do it if the costs is somewhat less than $0. You shouldn't pay to get a graduate degree. You should get paid to do it, even if it's just a modest pittance to survive on.
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Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby tetractys » Sat Feb 02, 2013 1:20 pm

I follow my parents who have always offered me their life freely. So I expect my dependents to pay as much as they can, according to their ability. -- Tet
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