For Our Eagle Parents

Is education worth the investment? This is the question that many parents and students inevitably ask when looking at the initial upfront cost of earning their college degree.  And although it is often difficult to see at first, the answer to this question is still a resounding "YES"

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, college graduates have lower unemployment rates and higher earning potential over their lifetime than those who only hold a high school diploma. 

 



There is a direct correlation between a student's educational attainment and financial stability; proving that students and their families continue to turn to education to ensure a more solid future! 
 
 

Cost of College

Higher education has been in the news for several years in regards to tuition cost and loan debt. The cost of your students education plays a very large part in your families choice of the right college. At RMU, we understand this component and we work with families and students so they can fully understand what financial aid is available and their options for covering their tuition. A majority of our students do not pay the full amount of tuition because a students' financial aid is their to help cover it! Here are some tips to ensure that you and your family are not paying the full tuition cost:

Useful Tips for Families 
  1. START EARLY! The earlier you start researching your different options the better prepared you and your student will be when they see their financial aid package. 
  2. Fill out your FAFSA at fafsa.gov as close to January 1st EACH year your student is in school to ensure your maximum aid potential. If you are concerned that you haven't filed your taxes yet - do not fret! - you can simply indicate "Will File Taxes" and estimate your amounts and then go in later to correct. 
  3. Visit the following sites for more information on grants and the different type of loans available to students: studentloans.gov and studentaid.gov 
  4. Apply for outside scholarships! Now is the time to be researching what is available from outside your students chosen University. Sites like Fastweb.com and scholarships.com offer students a search engine to outside scholarship. At RMU, we have our own outside scholarship site for students which tells you the due dates and web addresses for your student to apply.
  5. Look to your employer to see if they offer any benefits for their employees dependents in the form of tuition reimbursement.

 

Student Loans

There is a very real concern that students are taking on more and more debt in order to complete their education while not feeling the true financial benefits of having a degree. However, research still shows that federal student loans are a good way to help families finance their students education and allowing students to build their credit.

A study conducted by Collegeboard in 2010 indicated that even during the recession years, students holding Bachelor Degrees recouped their upfront loan costs within 11 years of graduation (Coggin, S.). Remember - your students will be working for at least 40 years; which means that they will have earned back what they had initially invested within less than a third of their careers! Proving that student loans are still an excellent way to finance your students education. 

It is important to make sure that they are keeping track of their loan debt throughout their education by visiting nslds.ed.gov once they are enrolled. As well as encouraging them to only take out what is needed to help minimize the cost while they move throughout their education.

It is also wise to keep in mind that all federal student loans can be paid back during schooling without penalty - your student doesn't need to wait til after graduation. A good tip is to at least pay on any interest that might be accruing as they progress in their education. 

 

THINGS TO REMEMBER

Your student's top concern should be determining whether or not a particular institution is a good fit for him or her. Students should apply to the college of their choice, and then work with their financial aid office to determine a plan to enroll. 

And know that at RMU, we are here to help you through the process! Our Admissions and Financial Aid staff are dedicated to assisting you with any questions or concerns that might come up prior to your student enrolling here. 

We firmly believe that the financial aid process is and should be a collaboration between the student, their family, and the institution. Please contact us if you want further information on our process and we look forward to seeing your students in our hallways soon! 

 

Sources:

Coggin, S. (2010). Education Pays 2010 Report Shows College Graduates Weather Recession   Better Than Others. Collegeboard, para. 5. Retrieved   from http://press.collegeboard.org/releases/2010/education-pays-2010-report-shows-college-graduates-weather-recession-better-others

Earnings and Unemployment Rates by Education Attainment. (2012). Retrieved from: http://www.bls.gov/emp/ep_chart_001.htm

Robert Morris University Illinois is a private, not-for-profit associate, baccalaureate, and master's degree-granting institution, accredited by the Higher learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (230 South LaSalle Street, Chicago, Illinois 60604, 312.263.0456). Robert Morris serves over 7000 students interested in getting an education that meets the demands of today's business, graphic arts, health care, culinary and technical world at its main campus in Chicago as well as at locations in Arlington Heights, DuPage, Elgin, Orland Park, Bensenville, Schaumburg, Springfield, Peoria and Lake County.