How to Invest in the Stock Market

February 18, 2013 Leave a comment

This website is a great resource for learning about the stock market, how to choose stocks and how to invest in the market. It has a very informative blog, reviews of different web-trading sites and resources, and even a free online investing course.

 

Investing IQ

 

You can read the expert reviews or submit your own review.  Also, they have an annual stock-picking contest where you can put your investing knowledge to the test against other stock market veterans and expert investors.

 

Check it out and let us know what you think.

What are the most useful emerging technologies in higher education?

December 26, 2012 Leave a comment

Personalized-learning-financia

I recently participated in a story about uncovering the most useful emerging technologies in higher education.  Here is a clip of my answer.  Do you have another suggestion for a useful emerging technology in higher education?  If so share it in the comments below.

What is an example of an emerging technology in the higher education field?

 One of the most useful emerging technologies education is ‘Personalized Learning’. This often involves an online component which collects information and preferences from students through surveys, and then personalizes portions of the lesson plan to the needs or preferences of the student.

We (iGrad) use this technology in the online financial literacy platforms we develop for colleges. The platform determines which topics are most relevant to each student based on different profile data and performance evaluations.  By making the information more relevant to each student, ‘Personalized Learning’ greatly increases learning retention and effectiveness.

 

Kris

iGrad – Financial Literacy

 

Student Loan Exit Counseling Doesn’t Have to Be Boring!

December 14, 2012 Leave a comment

Federal-student-loan-questions

Check out our latest article on Storify:

Student Loan Exit Counseling Doesn’t Have to Be Boring!
Search Twitter for “Exit Counseling” and see if you can find one positive comment. In case you’re busy, I’ve pasted a few comments below. Keep in mind the less “tame” comments have been censored out. But a new product on the horizon ensures that Exit Counseling will no longer be boring…

Read the full Storify post here: http://storify.com/iGrad/student-loan-exit-counseling-doesn-t-have-to-be-bo
What are your thoughts on the subject? Let us know below in the comments section.
Kris
www.iGrad.com

Student Loan Borrowing Questions

December 13, 2012 Leave a comment

Student-loan-questions

Hey guys,

I was just interviewed for an upcoming article about student loan borrowing advice for college students.  Some of these answers may be of help to you as well.  Please add your own input or question in the comments section.

Which loans should a student accept?

It is important for students to exhaust all of their federal loan options before resorting to private loans.  Perkins loans and Direct Stafford loans typically have much more favorable interest rates and benefits than private alternatives.

What factors should be considered beyond just the interest rate of a student loan?

There are several benefits associated with federal loans which usually do not exist with private loans.  For example, federal Direct Stafford loans have deferment and forbearance options which can postpone your payments and protect your credit in times of hardship.  Payment plan flexibility is another important consideration.  Federal Direct Stafford loans have several different repayment plans which a borrower can switch between, and the federal consolidation program can extend the repayment term up to 30 years if needed.  One last factor to consider is prepayment penalty; federal student loans never have any prepayment penalty.

How should students decide how much they can afford to borrow and be able to pay back after college?

Students should calculate their projected student loan payments using the calculators available on the Department of Education’s website.

When should student loans be turned down?

Ideally, every loan should be turned down unless it is absolutely necessary.  When loans are an absolute necessity, students should always accept the federal loans first.  It is important to note that students do not need to accept the entire federal loan amount that is awarded to them; unused portions of the loan can be returned without any penalty.

Do you have any other financial aid advice for college students?

Students should try to supplement their financial aid by applying to scholarships and work-study programs.

If possible, it is a very good practice for students to make the interest payments on your unsubsidized student loans to keep.

I hope this information helps!

Kris

iGrad.com

 

Why Financial Literacy? And What are Colleges Doing About it?

December 6, 2012 Leave a comment

Check out our latest article on Storify:

Why Financial Literacy? And What are Colleges Doing About it?
Financial literacy is a problem; unless we make a major change we will see another major recession in the near future. Fortunately, some colleges are leading the way with some innovative programs. Check out these videos & stories to see why financial literacy is needed & what is being done about it.

Read the full Storify post here: http://storify.com/iGrad/why-financial-literacy-and-what-are-colleges-are-d
What are your thoughts on the subject? Let us know below in the comments section.
Kris
www.iGrad.com

What are some good financial literacy conferences?

December 4, 2012 Leave a comment

Financial_literacy_conferences

Hey Guys,

I just answered this question from someone who reached out to me on LinkedIn; I thought this information may be helpful to you all as well.

What financial literacy conferences do you suggest attending? (specifically for higher education)?

Thanks for reaching out to me. The regional Jump$tart Conferences can be very good.  Many people think they are tailored to K-12, but from my experience they seem to have a lot of participation from the higher education field as well.  Also, all of these listed below are conferences which iGrad plans to attend this year.

2013 COHEAO Annual Conference

COHEAO – Coalition of Higher Education Assistance Organizations

http://www.coheao.com/conference-events/upcoming-events/

January 27 – 30, 2013 – Arlington, VA

 

Financial Literacy & College Persistence Conference

Menlo College

http://www.menlo.edu/financial-literacy-and-college-persistence-conference/agenda-tentative

January 18, 2013 – Atherton, CA

 

2013 MASFAA Financial Literacy Symposium

MASFAA – Massachusetts Association of Financial Aid Administrators

http://www.masfaa.org/committees/concerns/index.php

February 2013 – TBD

 

2013 Student Financial Services Conference

NACUBO – National Association of College and University Business Officers

http://www.nacubo.org/Events_and_Programs/2013_Student_Financial_Services_Conference.html

March 10 – 12, 2013 – Austin, TX

 

2013 IFL Annual Conference

IFL – Institute for Financial Literacy

http://www.financiallit.org/about/news.aspx

April 2013 – TBD

 

2013 NCHER Spring Convention

NCHER – National Council of Higher Education Resources

http://www.ncher.us/events/event_details.asp?id=269749

May 21 – 22, 2013 – Charleston, SC

 

2013 Annual APSCU Conference

APSCU – Association of Private Sector Colleges & Universities

http://www.apscuconvention.org/

June 5 – 7, 2013 – Orlando, FL

 

2013 NASFAA Annual Conference

National Association of Student Financial Aid Administration

http://www.nasfaa.org/events/national/2013_NASFAA_National_Conference.aspx

July 14 – 17, 2013 – Las Vegas, NV

 

I hope this helps!

Kris

iGrad.com Financial Literacy

What are some common financial aid scams which students should be wary of?

November 28, 2012 Leave a comment

Financial_aid_scams

Hey guys … I just answered this question for a reporter working on a financial aid piece and thought I would share. Feel free to add your own answers below.

What are some common financial aid scams which students should be wary of?

One most common financial aid scam is companies that charge money for services that are typically free.  The FAFSA is a common target for this.  Many websites charge students money to submit their FAFSA, even though it is a free federal application (FAFSA actually stands for FREE Application for Federal Student Aid).  Even if these websites are assisting students in completing their application, this assistance can typically be found for free online as well.  More importantly, a FAFSA submitted by one of these websites is much more likely to be flagged for verification, compared to a FAFSA completed electronically on the Government’s website (FAFSA.ed.gov).  Verification means much more work for the student, as they will need to compile tax returns and other documentation, and it could also mean a delay in receiving the financial aid.

I hope this helps!

Kris

iGrad Financial Literacy