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11/11/2015 at 1:59pm

Last week, several members of the Private College 529 Plan board presented a session on 529 plans at the College Board Forum.  Our data showed that colleges expect middle and upper income families to save for college, but they are not. We suggested that it is in the best interests of colleges and universities to find ways to promote savings in 529 plans. To distribute the information more widely, I've written a blog post for the Brookings Institution's Brown Center Chalkboard blog.

9/11/2015 at 2:32pm

If you read anything about paying for college these days, you may have seen a column or two in which the author lamented that “back in the day” a student could earn the year’s tuition by working a summer job.


Of course, those times are past. Given the rising cost of college, higher education has to be paid for over time, like retirement or a home.  There are basically two options:

  • Save money in advance and earn interest, especially in tax-advantaged 529 plans

9/2/2015 at 4:15pm

The huge drop in the stock market in late August is a reason for families saving for college to explore the Private College 529 Plan. So says a leading college savings advisor writing on the web site. Troy Onink, is CEO of college planning firm,


Troy writes, and I couldn't agree more:


5/29/2015 at 10:56am

May 29 is “529 College Savings Day.” As president of a 529 prepaid tuition plan, this is a time to remember that planning and saving for college is more advantageous than borrowing. To cite one example, to pay $10,000 of college costs, a family could save $58 a month for 10 years at 7% interest. That’s $7,000 in principal and $3,000 coming in earnings.

4/27/2015 at 2:00pm

This is the time of the year when many students choose which of the colleges that accepted them to attend. It is a major decision that for many will clearly be shaping their future. How well will their college have prepared them for the challenges of life, including their economic well-being, health, family, civil engagement, and achieving their dreams.


2/23/2015 at 3:09pm

I got a first-hand inkling last week of just how much 2015’s high school seniors understand about the cost of college, debt, and the importance of saving.

I’m active with my college alumni association and had to read about three dozen applications for alumni scholarships that that my local chapter awards. Reviewing these applications, I noted a few themes:

1/20/2015 at 11:42am

Rebekah Bortniker loves Taylor Swift. After the Overland Park, Kansas, woman created a video of the star, Taylor Swift sent her a special package that included a check for $1,989 to help pay her student loan debt. The amount is a takeoff on Swift’s new album by that name.

12/9/2014 at 3:59pm

$9,804. $32,762. $42,419. Those are figures you’re seeing in the College Board’s recently-released Trends in College Pricing survey. Tuition isn’t rising as fast as recent years but still outpaces inflation. The figures are for some families quite real and for most, terribly misleading. The increasing cost of college is a challenge for many families; an equally important challenge is to help the American people understand that for many, indeed most families, the cost of college is far, far less and with prudent planning within their reach. 

4/24/2014 at 3:23pm

Josh Mitchell's April 22, 2014 front page Wall Street Journal  article entitled "Federal Plans that Forgive Student Debt Skyrocket" reviewed current public policies governing the forgiveness of student debt now exceeding $1.1 trillion.

6/11/2013 at 9:38am

Shakespeare once wrote "neither a borrower nor a lender be." This is no doubt sound advice in any age but in today's world, some modest level of financing should not always necessarily be viewed negatively. Nonetheless, borrowing should only be undertaken after all other sources have been considered...and only to the extent absolutely needed. Government loans are typically going to offer the best provisions.