College Financial Aid Decision-making

Apr 3, 2012

College Financial Aid Decision-making

  The hefty cost of college—how can families pay for today’s rising tuition rates? It’s the season for that big decision about which college to attend, and financial aid plays a major part in that decision. How should families decipher the aid packages, and what other options make college costs more manageable? How to pay for college?

It’s a painful reality for families with a student bound for college—paying for tuition hurts. But financial aid offers some relief—the majority of students do receive some form of aid as they enter college. Right now, as students receive those fat or thin envelopes from colleges, they find out not only whether they got in, but what sort of financial aid colleges can offer. How do families weigh the offers, and what are some other creative ways to pay for college?

Host Keith Shortall spoke with 

John Bowie, Director of Financial Aid at Southern Maine Community College,

Martha Johnston, Director of Education Services and Outreach at the Finance Authority of Maine,

Cherie Galyean, Scholarship Manager at the Maine Community Foundation,

and Michael Bartini, Incoming Director of Student Aid at Bowdoin College, who offered some advice for wading through the intimidating financial aid process.