Why is our nation in the midst of a $1.7 trillion student loan debt crisis? Why are 45 million Americans still paying off their student loans? Why do 81% of those who take out student loans have to delay key life milestones like buying a house, getting married and having children? Because understanding the college financial aid process and the student loan industry is complicated. If not careful, if not educated, and without a tool such as the ‘College Affordability Toolkit,’ the student loan debt crisis will perpetuate. We created this application as a service to our communities and our nation - and as a cause for the common good of people.
The College Affordability Toolkit is an empowering resource for students, families, and school counselors that will clearly identify whether or not a student can afford the college they are considering. ‘College affordability’ can be hard to define and is different for every student and family - so we have created an application that is rooted in research, best practices, and expert guidance, to produce an affordability rating for every student, at every college, under every circumstance. It will reveal the ‘true cost’ of college, for each student, given their unique situation, and tell them if a given college is affordable for them with the hopes of keeping them out of unnecessary student loan debt.
Students and families deserve to know what college is going to cost and whether or not a given scenario or ‘offer’ is a wise financial decision. Figuring these things out without help and without a tool is almost impossible. It is easy to get caught up in the emotions and excitement of ‘signing up for college’ without considering that you may also be signing up for decades of debt and the need to delay many of life’s key milestones because you are paying off your college loans until you are 40. Colleges often use the psychology of scholarshipping and financial manipulation to entice students, who may not be a good fit for their college and can’t afford it, to enroll.
The College Affordability Toolkit will empower students to understand their out-of-pocket expenses and the amount of loans they will need to cover their expenses, at any college in the United States. Every student will know, in real-time, how much money they will need to come up with, if they need student loans, when their loan payments will start, how much their loan payments will be, and how old they will be before they are out of debt. The College Affordability Toolkit brings transparency to the ‘real costs’ of more than 7,000 U.S. colleges and universities. With this information in hand, students can make informed decisions on college and their future!
Those who will benefit from the College Affordability Toolkit:
Students: Students who make wise financial decisions with regards to the college or university they attend have shown to live happier and more successful lives than those who do not.
Parents/Supporters/Families: Using the College Affordability Toolkit will allow parents to use less of their ‘college savings’ and avoid taking out additional ‘Parent Plus’ or private loans.
School Counselors: School counselor will be equipped to financially guide students in real-time through their post-secondary educational journey search with baseline data.
Colleges/Universities: Equipping students with the right tools to understand the finances will help colleges avoid high attrition rates due to student dropping out because they can’t afford the costs.
Employers: Helping students find the right postsecondary fit will maximize educational and financial alignment between their future and the needs of employers. This impact will help solve workforce development shortages.
Communities: The effects of keeping students out of unnecessary student loan debt will stimulate economic growth and provide communities with young people who will have the ability to invest and spend money they would not have otherwise had.
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