It's imperative to plan carefully for college. Now there are many helpful resources to assist parent/guardian and student...
First, I've compiled a wealth of information for you, to make things much easier at: http://www.studentmentor.org/blog/2011/05/smart-college-financial-plann…
Second, in the above post, I highly recommend extensive information in Suze Orman's newly released, "The Money Class", which discusses (in detail) planning for college, sending your student off with good financial information, and sane ways to finance the whole tab--and much more. It is only touched on in the above link.
Third, be sure to research, very carefully, any colleges you intend to consider. Confirm they have the proper accreditation, a long history of the highest rating, and don't have a high student loan default rate or drop-out rate. See the above link for more information about colleges. If you find the colleges' recruiters are promising the impossible, find another college. No reputable college should promise a job after graduation. What they should highlight is students will be academically prepared for their future in their field. Their Career Center should be well equipped and staffed by faculty who have made great strides in asisting students find internships and proper employment.
Last, parents/guardians shouldn't forget to discuss what they expect of students leaving home for college. Everything from moral behavior--inside and outside of the classroom--to personal spending and GPA expectations.
Planning for college can be stressful, financially exhausing and exciting all at the same time. Maintaining a respectful and open dialogue between student and parent/guardian is paramount. But, it can be done successfully with good resources and a smart approach.
Judy Anne-Educator/Writer/Prospect Researcher Edublog-http://workforcedevelopment.edublogs.org/
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