Why Plan For College?

Services Offered

In order to successfully navigate getting your student through 4 years of college, here’s what BrightTree does for you.

STUDENT POSITIONING AND PLANNING

Intro Meeting – Our Client Services Coordinator will sit with you and thoroughly explain the college application, acceptance and financial aid process.
Student Tracker – An organizer will be provided to each student in the family upon their freshman year. This tool will help them be more strategic in their college research approach as well as keep track of important application deadlines.
Career & College Research – Access to an innovative online site will be provided to each student to help research thousands of careers and colleges. The program will match a student’s interest with relevant careers and provides updated and specific information on all the US colleges.
Merit Estimator – Using a student’s standardized test scores, grades, desired major and expected family contribution, a report will be run to estimate an unlimited number of school’s award packages as well as provide a list of schools where the student falls within the top 25% of the applicants.
College Selection Consultation – A meeting will be held to help determine which college is the best fit. Students will bring in their award/acceptance letters for a side by side comparison. We will then walk the family through a thorough selection process and help them analyze each college. The result is greater peace of mind about the selected college.
College Readiness Class – College: An Investment for a Lifetime! (High School Seniors Only)

This course will help students to create greater success in college, work, and life in general.  They will become familiar with strategies that will enhance academic, relational, and personal life skills that will improve their chances for college success and retention.  As a result, students will have a realistic view of what it means to invest themselves, money and personal time in college.

More on College Readiness Class

Course Goals

  1. Students will accept self-responsibility towards their college success which includes a social, moral, and academic aspect.
  2. Students will increase their self-motivation to become more resilient in college.
  3. Students will develop better self-management skills with the use of their time, money, and other resources in meeting the demands of college, family, and work.
  4. Students will develop a network of support with high school counselor and other students to be more interdependent in attaining their college goals.
  5. Students gain greater self-awareness that will help them identify both strengths and weaknesses and the impact they have on college success.
  6. Students will adopt lifelong learning skills that are transferable from college to the world of work. (i.e: Interview and critical thinking skills)
  7. Students will understand and improve their emotional health in relationship to college, family, and work.
  8. Students will be assisted in setting short-term and long-term goals performed by our Academic Coach/Advisor

Student Learning Outcomes

At the completion of this course, each student will have;

SLO #1 – Identify and analyze choices that indicate successful student behaviors

SLO #2 – Design an effective system for self-management, career goal setting, and academic college and life plan.

SLO #3 – Identify, illustrate and interpret self-defeating behavior patterns and its impact on one’s life (Moral and Social responsibility)

SLO #4 – Identify and examine learning styles in relationship to life-long learning

PARENT POSITIONING AND PLANNING

Provide Planning Recommendations To Reduce EFC, If Necessary
Provide Recommendations For The Best Way To Pay Your Share Of College Costs
Provide Complete Financial Overview On College, Taxes, Cash Flow, and Retirement & Develop A Plan To Improve Each Area
Provide Strategies To Legally Protect Your Assets
Provide Strategies On How To Possibly Use Your Home Equity so That It Helps, Rather Than Hurts, In The Financial Aid Formulas
Provide Software That Tracks Goals & Finances To Ensure Proper Funding Is Available

FINANCIAL AID FILINGS

Complete Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), CSS Profile, and IDOC Requirements, If Financial Plan Is Created Implemented By BrightTree

* We do not guarantee the results of our program if we do not create the financial plan to pay for college & beyond.

Confirm the accuracy of the Student Aid Report (SAR), If Financial Plan Is Created Implemented By BrightTree

* We do not guarantee the results of our program if we do not create the financial plan to pay for college & beyond.

Evaluate award offers and provide a side by side analysis

College Funding FAQ's

Q. WHAT IS COLLEGE FINANCIAL PLANNING?

A. Proper College Financial Planning services take you through the process of evaluating your child’s educational goals, your financial goals, and then aligning them in order to get your child to and through college in a comfortable manner while making sure that you have something left over to enjoy life and plan for retirement with.

 

Q. WHO CAN BENEFIT MOST FROM COLLEGE FINANCIAL PLANNING SERVICES?

A. These services have made the biggest impact on families that are in the so called “Middle Class” situation. These parents face a financial crunch every time. In many cases, the EFC calculation will tell them that they don’t qualify for aid or give them a very discouraging number.

 

Q. IS IT WORTH IT?

A. Yes. Especially if you are like many of our clients who don’t have the time to figure out the process and are not willing to gamble $40,000 or more away in money that they could’ve received. Time, effort, and resources must be invested in order to put together a solid game plan.

 

Q. WHY WOULD I NEED A COLLEGE FUNDING CONSULTANT?

A. Having someone to actually hold your hand through the process can be the difference between a good night’s rest and countless nightmares. Contrary to popular belief, completing the FAFSA is not the only way to get financial aid for college. You will need a College Funding Consultant to guide you through the complexities of the system and to help you make decisions that keep paying for college under control and in line with other financial goals.

 

Q. CAN’T I DO THIS ON MY OWN?

A. Like doing your taxes, if you have the time, the background, and the know-how, you can learn part of the process and do some of the work on your own. However, there are still so many areas of the process where our expertise can get you more money for college than you normally would by just filling out the forms and hoping for the best which is what many parents are doing these days because it’s easy. This process is not all about filling out forms which anyone can do. But knowing that 74% or higher go in with errors and inconsistencies this is not an area to take a gamble.

 

Q. CAN’T THE SCHOOLS HELP ME WITH COLLEGE FUNDING?

A. They provide very limited assistance in this area if any at all. And in many cases you will not receive assistance regarding financial aid until the senior year of high school. That will consist of helping you fill out forms and then maybe a discussion on loans. From a college funding stand point, that’s too little too late. A plan must be in place prior to completing the FAFSA.

 

Q. WHAT ABOUT COMPANIES WHO OFFER FREE HELP OR ADVICE?

A. Many of these companies limit their support to areas of financial aid only. They offer no real strategies that will save you money on the cost of college. Plus, you know the saying, “You get what you pay for.”

 

Q. HOW IS THIS DIFFERENT THAN MEETING WITH MY STUDENT’S COLLEGE COUNSELOR AT SCHOOL?

A. The meetings that are held by the high school college counselor are geared towards helping your student select a college. We dig deeper. We not only want your student to pick a school that’s right for them but that’s also right for your budget.

 

Q. IT SEEM LIKE YOU’RE COMPETING WITH OUR SCHOOL’S COLLEGE COUNSELORS.

A. Not at all. Our services are designed to either compliment the work that they’ve already done or, we can handle the entire process on our own. As a family, that is a decision that you get to make and it puts you in control of the process.

 

Q. WHAT IF I ALREADY HAVE A COLLEGE FUND?

A. 73% of parents polled admitted that they have no real plan to pay for college. If you do have a plan, you may not be sure that it’s going to work. Most people have ideas but no written plan with step by step directions in making it work.

 

Q. IS THIS ABOUT LOANS OR INVESTMENTS?

A. No, we simply provide solutions that are tailor-made for your specific situation to pay for college without going broke or spending your life savings.

 

Q. HOW IS THIS DIFFERENT FROM OTHER ADVICE WE’VE HEARD OR SEEN ON THE INTERNET?

A. There’s a ton of information out there. The question is how much of it really pertains to your exact situation? The information and solutions we provide have been tested and proven to work by our current clients who are sending their children to colleges and universities such as Creighton, NYU, University of Michigan, Cornell, and Columbia.

 

Q. HOW DO I KNOW IF I’M NOT PREPARED?

A. If you can answer yes to ALL four of these questions, you’re well on your way. If not, you really need to come in for a free visit.

 

IS YOUR PLAN GUARANTEED TO DO THE FOLLOWING?

YES OR NO

  1. Cover the entire cost of college, expected or unexpected?
  2. Allow you to continue living the same level of lifestyle or better?
  3. Allow you to keep on track to retirement?
  4. Do all of the above without going into debt?

808-521-4401