College Resources & News from CFNC
Many students want to expand their horizons when figuring out where to hang their backpacks, and for good reason. Opportunities abound for students willing to travel. Here are some benefits of out-of-state colleges.
The value of extracurricular activities is a common concern among high school students (and parents) when it comes to filling out college applications. But does it really matter that much? And if so, what are the best extracurriculars for college that you should be considering? Let’s discuss!
Working from home is easier to do now than ever before, and an increasing number of industries are accommodating remote work requests from employees of all ages — even high school students! When you’re exploring the options of an entry-level work-from-home job, here are some things to think about and resources to help you.
To celebrate National College Savings Month in September and encourage families to save for education, NC 529, North Carolina’s National College Savings Program, gave away $5,529 to one lucky family! Congratulations to the Holt family of Durham, North Carolina! They received the $5,529 contribution to put towards the future education of their three children — Elias, Everett, and Cora.
Consider enrolling in a Career and Technical Education (CTE) program. Not sure what that is or if it’s right for you? Then keep reading!
After you’ve taken some college tours and made a list of schools and majors that are a good fit for you, the next steps will involve completing college applications. Most schools will begin accepting applications in August for the following academic year.
The senior year of high school gets all the glory. That’s when you apply and get accepted to college, decide what’s next in the journey of life, and toss that graduate cap into the air! But what happens during your junior year makes everything that happens in your senior year possible.
While some colleges had virtual experiences on their website before the pandemic, nearly all of them do today! Start by using the CFNC College Search Tool to create a list of schools you’re interested in attending.
When you think of scholarships, you may think about how strong of a GPA you need to qualify. It might surprise you to know that there are interesting scholarships based on other things too. For example, if you make a prom dress out of Duck brand duct tape, you could earn a scholarship. You could earn a scholarship for a Google doodle, being a vegetarian, or simply for being taller than the average person.
Your senior year in high school is a big year on many levels because you are ending one chapter of your life and starting another. It is also the year where you will spend the most time preparing for college. As there can be a lot of factors involved in that decision, here is a checklist of things to do on the way to applying for college.
Is it a good idea to open a 529 account to fund your child's education? Discover some pros and cons of a 529 plan to see if it's right for your family.
Trying to save up for your child’s future education? Our experts share their top 10 penny-pinching tips—and what to avoid—when saving for college.
Transferring colleges or universities isn't the same as applying to college the first time. Here's what it takes to transfer colleges and transfer credits.
Student loans are a necessity for most college students, but they aren't all created equally. Here's what to look for in a good student loan with great interest rates.
One method of funding a child’s college education is taking advantage of the Uniform Gifts to Minors Act. The UGMA option, as well as UTMA accounts, are among the most traditional savings strategies. Like any other strategy, however, both come with some pros and cons.
There are a lot of questions when it comes to paying for college. Perhaps the biggest one is how you’re going to afford it. For most students, this means taking out student loans to invest in their futures.
The college applications are in, you’ve completed the FAFSA, and you’ve applied for the NC Assist Loan. But, there’s still more you can do to get ready for college. Scholarships are a great way to get extra money for college, and there are scholarships available for everyone.
When should you apply? What options should you look for first? And how much are you even qualified to receive? Let’s answer some of those questions so that those who need student loans can avoid the most common and costly mistakes and benefit from the options at their disposal.
The process of securing loans to pay for and earn a Masters of Business Administration, or MBA student loans, is much like the process of securing undergraduate student loans. The good news is MBA students often have more funding options available to them.
Opening a 529 education savings account is an effective way to save for your student’s college and K–12 education. The investments you make now into your child’s 529 plan can grow over time, helping your family pay for the educational opportunities that await your child. Let’s explore how to open a 529 account in North Carolina and how to plan to contribute over time.
It’s never too early or too late to engage teens in productive money management. Teaching and modeling good stewardship of money can give younger folks a solid foundation, a sense of empowerment, and habits for success that last a lifetime. Setting teens up on a money managing path can begin with just a few basics.
While there's no doubt that higher education has many benefits, everyone has different reasons why they choose to attend college. Check out these seven benefits of higher education to answer the question of, “Why go to college?”
Whether you’re a high school grad or you want to go back to school to change careers, there are ample resources to help guide you through the process. You’re already off to a great start by reading this article! Continue reading to understand the benefits of a community college education, how to apply to a community college, and where to find help as you complete the application and enrollment process.
Before you can walk the stage with your best friends and walk off into the sunset, you must tackle that dreaded condition that plagues high school seniors around the world: SENIORITIS. In a time where productivity and motivation are more important than ever, symptoms of senioritis, like inactivity, fatigue, or chronic class-skipping, must be stopped before they get serious. Luckily, following these 10 tips will keep you on track for success!
Doing something you love is important, but there are other crucial things to consider to find a career that will support your life goals. Here's what matters most.
If your parents are separated or divorced, there are a couple ways that you can fill out your FAFSA form depending on whether they are still living together or not.
Want to kick-start your child's education fund while they're still young? Here are the best ways to start investing for future education expenses today.
Wondering the best way to answer your college essay prompts? Here's how to write an effective, meaningful story that will help your personality shine through.
There is no better gift you could give a new baby (or their family) than contributing to the child's future education. Here's how to make a donation to them.
Adults going back to college often have to balance work, school, and family life. Here are some tips to get the most of your education and avoid burnout.
As an adult student, you may be wondering where to start. Explore our guide for learning as an adult, applying to a school, and getting financial aid.
It’s no secret that college comes with a hefty price tag. And as the years have flown by, the costs have tended to tick up. So just how much are we talking about when we estimate college costs in the next decade? We help show you what to expect and share tips for how to start preparing for college costs now.
For decades, families have been using college savings bonds as a low-risk, long-range savings option to prepare financially for their children’s college education. However, a lot has changed over the years, and parents now have many options to save for their children’s educations.
Making a child savings plan when your kid is young is the best way to prepare for the cost of education down the road. This can also teach your child good money habits and how to plan for the future.
Figuring out how to pay for college can be overwhelming, especially because there are so many college funding sources available. From federal and private loans to different types of savings accounts and investments, it can be difficult to know which option is best.
If you’re eager to save money for your child’s college education and you have the means to make a large contribution to their 529 accounts, should you? Can you? You may also be wondering if there are 529 contribution limits for married couples. Here are some answers to help you make the best financial decision for your family.
Half of finding the right job to start your career is knowing where to look. It also helps to have a plan. We put together this list of career planning apps to help students find and apply to jobs and learn to plan their careers while still in school.
One common conundrum for North Carolina students is comparing CFNC vs. Common App, or the Common Application, and deciding which tool is best for submitting college applications. We break down what each tool is used for and how CFNC — a free statewide resource specifically for North Carolina students, parents, and schools — differentiates itself from the international Common App.
Understanding what’s a major in college, deciding whether a minor may be beneficial, and researching majors that are most in demand today can help students as they plan their coursework, and ultimately, prepare for their future success.
Is your GPA good enough to get into college? Here are the factors college admissions counselors consider when determining if you'll be accepted to their school.
Wondering which expenses your 529 plan will pay cover? We list many qualified expenses: from tuition and fees, to books, supplies, room and board, and more.
Wondering what it costs to attend college in North Carolina? Here's how to calculate estimated expenses for both in-state and out-of-state tuition.
A stellar college letter of recommendation can determine whether you'll be accepted to your top college choices—or not. Here's how to get a shining reference.
Admissions counselors see thousands of college application resumes a year. Here's what to include and how to format your student resume so it garners attention.
Wondering what kind of college is right for you? We detail the main college types (and reasons to consider each type) so you can narrow down your search.
Here are the fall 2022 college application deadlines for Early Action, Early Decision, Regular Decision, and Rolling Admission, and what you need to apply.
To celebrate National College Savings Month in September and encourage families to save for education, NC 529, North Carolina’s National College Savings Program, gave away $1,000 to one lucky winner!
Enter The #NC529Halloween Costume Contest for a chance to win big for you and your future graduate! Share a picture of your child in his or her Halloween Costume on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, and use the hashtag #NC529Halloween for a chance to win $100 deposited directly into your NC 529 account!
The Covid-19 pandemic has drastically changed the way students are taking college classes. Are online college classes right for you? We weigh the pros and cons.
A well-written brag sheet should pinpoint your high school successes-—but it shouldn't look like a resume. Here's how to format your brag sheet and what to include.
You've been saving for college—but is it really enough? Here's how much you should have saved for each year of your child's life, based on their goals.
The American Opportunity credit ($2,500) and the Lifetime Learning tax credit ($2,000) can help reduce college expenses. Here's how to determine if you qualify.
The number of recommendation letters you submit varies by university. It's best to have at least one professional and one academic reference letter. Some universities may ask for three or more.
Interested in pursuing a career in artificial intelligence? Here are the top career paths you should consider, and which jobs are most in demand.
To help students get started on their path to higher education, College Foundation of North Carolina (CFNC) is urging students and parents to mark their calendars for NC Countdown to College, CFNC’s annual college-access event, in October.
From scholarships, loans, and grants to work-study opportunities and college savings plans, we run through the best options available to make college attainable.
These days, online college application is standard. Here's how the application process works and what you need to have ready in order to apply.
Not all student loans are created equal. Here’s what to look for in Parent PLUS, Student PLUS, and private loans to minimize your overall loan costs.
If you're a junior or senior in high school, it's time to start applying for college. Our complete to-do list details everything you need accomplish before applying.
Do you want to encourage grandparents and family members to invest in your child's college fund instead of giving toys and other gifts? Here's how to persuade them.
Trying to determine the best method to help save for college? Here's how custodial accounts compare to traditional 529 plans, so you can choose which is best.
You may have plans to get a part-time job to pay for some of your tuition or living expenses. If you need additional help, financial aid does cover summer classes.
College financial planning is often done by both the student and his/her parents. Multiple options are available to pay for the increasing costs of college.
Standing out from the pack in scholarship applications can be difficult. Follow these tips to give yourself the best chance to lower your college costs.
Across the country, college application numbers for low-income, first-generation, and minority students have decreased during the pandemic. College Foundation of North Carolina (CFNC) has also seen a decrease in applications and financial aid numbers for these students in our state, especially in the most economically distressed counties.
Most students apply to 8-10 schools, but it can vary wildly. Some schools charge application fees of up to $75, so simply applying to as many schools as possible is rarely advised.
Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants (FSEOG) help students in need pay for undergraduate school. Here's who qualifies, and how to apply.
When you open a 529 account, the earnings grow tax-free, and your money isn’t taxed when it’s withdrawn for eligible education expense, including college expenses, K–12 tuition, or trade school. Here's why they're great investments.
Wondering what to include on your student resume for college? Here's what admissions counselors want to see—and what to leave out—on your high school resume.
May 29 (5/29) marks National College Savings Plan Day, and the NC 529 Plan celebrated with a new giveaway to promote saving for education and planning for the future. The Spring Into Saving: NC 529 Day Giveaway! was open to all current and new account holders.
If you don't qualify for college financial aid, you still have many options for paying for college. Here are the 9 ways you can cover your costs.
There's no greater gift than the gift of education. Here's how to offset the high cost of a college education by opening a grandchild savings account.
Saving for college should never come at the cost of pausing your own retirement contributions. Here's how to structure your finances to save for both.
Earning extra money during college doesn't always mean getting a late-shift job. Here are 13 ways you can make money in college that won't completely stress you out.
Our College Cost Estimator makes it simple to calculate the amount of money you'll need to set aside each month to help pay for your child's future education.
Summer classes are a great way to catch up or get ahead in college. But like any classes, you need to know how you will pay for them. Here are your options for paying for summer classes.
What will in-state tuition cost in North Carolina when your child attends college? Here's how to estimate costs, and how to get the best return on investment.
Federal Pell Grants are given to undergrad students in need who do not have a bachelor's, graduate, or professional degree. Here's how to tell if you qualify.
If you’ve been accepted into college, you may quickly realize the challenge of paying for tuition and other expenses. College costs are steadily increasing, and in 2017, the National Center for Education Statistics reported that 85 percent of college students received some form of financial aid. This statistic reveals the ongoing trend of college students needing to seek out external sources of funding to pay for their collegiate careers.
When planning financial aid for college, grants (free money) and loans (which have to be repaid) are key. Here's how they work, and the pros and cons of each.
Federal student loans are either subsidized or unsubsidized. Depending on your financial need, you may or may not qualify for a subsidized loan.
Parents and guardians can help finance their children's college expenses with a parent loan. Here are the best parent loans for college.
You hear a lot of horror stories about private student loans, but many aren't true. See what you really need to know about private student loans.
Getting ready for college? This helpful college planning timeline will keep you organized and ensure you don't miss very important dates.
Paying off a student loan as soon as possible will decrease the overall cost of the loan. However, there are pros and cons to paying it off early.
Having bad credit or no credit history can make it difficult to get a student loan. Here are some options available to those with poor credit.
Lots of students need student loans to pay for school. How do you shop around for the right student loan? See how to compare rates and what you need to know.
Paying off student loans quickly can save you money in the long run. Our experts weigh in on how to effectively pay off your loans ASAP.
Do you need a co-signer for your NC Assist Student loan? How does a co-signer help you qualify for a NC Assist Loan?
NC Assist site provides loan estimators to help students determine how much they should borrow to fill the gap between financial aid and the cost of college.
College costs will most-likely keep rising in the future. To help you know how much to save, here is a table of college costs in the future.
College can be expensive. Here are 13 ways students can score freebies and discounts with their school ID.
ou can lower your overall tax bill with a sound education savings strategy that takes advantage of common, and not-so-common tax benefits.
NC Assist Loans provide Student and Parent Loans which can help bridge the gap between financial aid and the cost of college.
Applying for college can be overwhelming and stressful. These 11 tips can help alleviate some stress and make you stand out from the pack.
Planning your career can feel overwhelming. This checklist can help guide you through the process of finding the profession you'd like to pursue and how to do it.
Finding the right college or university depends on many different factors. Here’s what you can do to research the college that’s right for you.
Before your new one arrives you should consider getting yours and his/her finances in line. How will you save for medical expenses? Or start a college savings account?
Federal and private loans provide options to help a student get over the financial hump of higher education. Learn about the various options available for college.
If a student cannot get a loan, getting a co-signer may be the ticket. Many students do not have the necessary credit requirements to obtain a loan on their own. Getting a co-signer can help students get a loan.
The 2020 holiday season will shine a little brighter this year with the “Holiday Wish List: Enter to Win $1,529.” The holiday drawing is sponsored by College Foundation, Inc. (CFI), a North Carolina nonprofit, and the NC 529 Plan, North Carolina’s education savings plan.
It may feel daunting for high school seniors to think about applying to college right now. Many are just trying to stay engaged in virtual classrooms and make it to graduation. Some may have a parent who lost their job and feel that college is just not possible right now.
College Foundation of North Carolina (CFNC) is excited to announce the launch of its completely revamped website. In addition to a sleek new look and feel, the new website also features personalized dashboards for users, easier navigation, updated college search tools, a customizable scholarship search, and more to help local students as they plan, apply, and pay for college. It’s the next generation of CFNC for the next generation of students!
College students are preparing for virtual campuses in the fall. Virtual college prep from CFNC lets students tour campus, research financial aid, and more.
No matter how old your children or your grandchildren are, college is probably something you’ve thought about. Will they want to go to college? Will they attend your alma mater? And how will you pay for college?
Whether you’re a spender or a saver, it can be difficult to put money aside for college, especially when your kids are young, and college seems so far away.
The cost of college is on the rise, and no generation knows that better than millennials. Many young parents today are still paying off their own student loans; while trying to save for their children’s education. The good news is, starting a college fund while your child is young gives you a good amount of time to create a solid nest egg for their future.
Congratulations to Andy Ewens, Ph.D., of Cary, North Carolina! Andy is the winner of the “Dream Big 5/29 Day Drawing to Win $5,529” in celebration of National 529 College Savings Plan Day. Andy’s name was selected at random from a long list of entries.
Most parents understand how important it is to save for college. While a 529 plan is one of the most efficient and effective ways for families to save for school, many parents don’t know how to choose the right 529 plan. How is a parent supposed to choose the right 529 plan based on its performance?
To give students and parents something to cheer about, North Carolina’s National College Savings Program (NC 529 Plan) is giving away $5,529!
The sky is the limit after you graduate from high school. Maybe you want to go to a traditional four-year university — or maybe you want to get started on your career ASAP. If you’re ready to get to work, a trade school may be the right choice for you. And yes, you can use your NC 529 Plan to pay for accredited trade schools and qualified education expenses.
How do you pay for college if you have no money? There are many options available to help you pay for college expenses and make your dreams within your reach!
Thinking about your child’s future and taking steps to help them reach their education and career dreams are important decisions. There are many options when deciding how to save for a child’s education. Parents can choose anything from a good old-fashioned savings account to savings bonds or mutual funds. However, many financial experts recommend parents consider 529 plans.
Career planning guidelines for high school seniors, college students, and soon-to-be graduates to make sure you hit the ground running once you get a diploma.
A 529 plan is one of the smartest investments that can be made for someone’s future. Even so, there are some uncertainties if you’re unfamiliar with how 529 plans work. Who can contribute to a 529 plan? Is it open to anyone? How can you contribute to it? Are there limits to contributions? What about tax advantages? We’re here to set the record straight.
For parents with very small children, thinking about dropping them off at college for their freshman year may seem very far away. Thinking about saving money for college may seem even farther in the distance. Yet, young parents today know first-hand how expensive college has become — because they’re probably still paying off student loans from their own educations!
There are many benefits to attending community colleges and trade schools. It’s important not to forget a valuable and affordable option.
Plenty of people will tell you about the importance of college. They’ll tell you about how college graduates earn more during their lifetimes. They’ll tell you about how the value of college extends far beyond the academic experience. What they may not tell you is how you’re supposed to pay for it.
Picture this. Your student is getting ready to go off to college for the first time. For years, you have contributed to their education savings plan, helping to make their dream of higher education a reality. As you prepare to send in the first payment from your 529 account, you want to ensure that your student is attending an eligible institution so it counts as a qualified withdrawal.
Preparing to send a child off to college requires a good amount of financial preparation. Sure, you’ve accounted for the basics that everyone knows all too well. You’ve considered tuition, room and board, and textbooks. But what about the extra costs associated with a college education? Are you prepared for those?
The holidays are approaching, and many parents and grandparents are wracking their brains, trying to come up with a great gift for the children in their lives. You can give them another toy or a sweater, but what about something for their future? Giving the gift of a college education is something they won’t outgrow or break.
As students and families plan for college, the question of how they will pay for college is typically part of the discussion. Financial aid is part of the equation for many families. To help raise awareness about financial aid options, Governor Roy Cooper of North Carolina declared February 19-25 Financial Aid Awareness Week. As you and your family continue to plan for college, be sure to learn about the FAFSA and the importance of applying for financial aid.
Opening a 529 education fund is a smart financial move for families, especially with the rising cost of college. Besides college expenses, the money also can be used to pay for K–12 tuition at public and private schools in many states, including North Carolina.
College visits help high school juniors decide where to apply. This list of questions ensures that you leave with the information you need to make a choice.
CFNC regional representative, April Query explains how changing your approach to learning may help smooth the transition from high school to college.
College Telly Award won. College Foundation of North Carolina was recognized for their video highlighting the need to apply for college and financial aid.
Most parents know how important it is to save for college. It’s essential that parents start saving early and save often. Not thinking about the cost of college isn’t going to make it go away. What parents may not realize is that there’s a terrific way to save for school right in their own backyard. Of course, we’re talking about the 529 plan.
High school seniors are not the only people who should be thinking about college. Beginning freshman year of high school, there are many things that students and parents can start working on.
Are you excited about having college roommates? Many people are, but it's always a good idea to keep these tips in mind as you plan to head off to college!
Payday should be more than a reminder on your calendar — it should be a national holiday. After all, can’t we celebrate the day that our hard work turns into cold hard cash in our bank accounts? Okay, that may be a little over the top, but you get the idea.
One of the most daunting tasks of any college application is the personal statement section. For many people, talking about themselves isn’t an easy task. You don’t want to be too full of yourself or exaggerate your accomplishments. However, you still want to stand out to the admissions office at your dream school.
For more information about North Carolina's National College Savings Program, please review the complete Program Description and Enrollment Agreement available on this website or contact 800-600-3453 to request an enrollment kit that includes both. Before opening an Account, or contributing funds to an existing Account, you should carefully read and consider the Program Description, which includes information on investment objectives, risks, charges, expenses, and other important information.
There’s a bug that starts to circulate among the seniors of any high school, and it becomes especially pronounced during the final semester before graduation. This illness robs seniors of their productivity, stealing hours of precious work and college prep time from them. There are cures, but they require hard work and effort. What bug are we talking about? It has a name counselors and teachers dread: Senioritis. Senioritis is the name for the tendency of many seniors to slow down their work.
Why college is important, Ask your rep: Amy Denton. She explains why college is important and how CFNC can help you prepare for the next educational step.
Once you’re accepted into college, one of the most pressing issues is how you’re going to pay for it. Here are a few easy scholarships that you definitely don’t want to miss.
We’re here to fill both seniors and parents in on what they need to know when it comes to applying for school. The process includes residency, the FAFSA form, and college applications.
Questions about college? From budgeting to applications to RDS, CFNC representative, Takeila Hall knows about planning, applying and paying for college.
NC 529 and the North Carolina Zoo are proud to present, Boo at the NC Zoo! A frightfully fun time for kids and parents! What’s It All About? Join us at the North Carolina Zoo in Asheboro, NC, for Boo at the NC Zoo! Come celebrate the spooky season with safe daytime fun for all ages.
College tours are an important step in the college selection process. In today’s modern world, many universities offer online tours of the campus, which is a great option. Virtual tours will give you an initial impression of the campus; however, there’s nothing quite like visiting a college in person. College visitations are often a whirlwind of information, but there are steps you can take to make the most of your experience! Come prepared
Starting a new career or thinking about a career change can be a daunting prospect for anybody. Maybe you’re looking to begin your first career path. Perhaps you discovered your true calling later in life. Whatever the case may be, there are resources available that are dedicated to helping you on your journey.To further promote the efforts of the NC Dept of Commerce, Governor Roy Cooper declared the week of Jan 28th through Feb 1st as Career Pathways Week throughout the state of North Carolina.
It’s never too early to start planning for college!” You might hear that often as you start high school, but what does that mean? Here at College Foundation of North Carolina, we know it means that your actions early on in your education will help determine your success when you finally reach your first year of college.
Opening an education savings account, such as an NC 529, while your child is young has all sorts of benefits. One benefit is that it allows the account to build until it’s needed for education. Earnings grow tax-free if the beneficiary uses the money for “qualified education expenses.” That term may sound confusing, but it’s intentionally broad.
Your college admissions essay is one of the most important elements of your college applications. It is always in your best interest to complete any optional essays.
As a parent, it’s all you can do to cut corners wherever possible. You do more with less while you take pride in your child’s enthusiasm for learning. But what if there were a better way? Every year, you have to buy markers, crayons, composition notebooks, and more. It feels as though the list of school supplies grows longer with each grade.
Going back to school can be very stressful – new activities, new classes, and new routines. Save yourself some first-week headaches and make a plan. If you schedule back-to-school doctor’s appointments early, you won’t be worried about missing the deadline for the annual checkup and/or pre-sport physicals.
The coronavirus pandemic is disrupting schedules and forcing teens to complete the school year at home. Read these 4 tips to get the most from e-learning.
New parents need to take advantage of every opportunity to save money. Those sweet bundles of joy are expensive! But what if there was a way to find a little extra cash in your monthly budget? We’re talking about painlessly trimming a few dollars here and there that, down the road, could add up to thousands in your baby’s college fund.
Starting kindergarten is a major milestone for every child! They may be riding a bus for the first time or anxious about making new friends. As parents, we want them to love school and enjoy every minute. Here are a few tips to help your child have a great year.
If you haven’t started saving for college yet, there is no time like the present! In recent years, college costs have risen an average of five percent annually. If that pace keeps up, the average cost for one year at a public four-year in-state school could jump from $22,000 to more than $55,000 per year in 18 years. To help families save for college, most states, including North Carolina, have 529 college savings programs.
It’s never too early to begin thinking about college. This scholarship aims to start students on the path to higher education at a younger age. The Victor E. Bell Scholarship is a North Carolina scholarship offered through College Foundation, Inc. (CFI) with the goal of supporting high-potential North Carolina students from limited financial backgrounds. Named for the former Chairman of the Board of Trustees for CFI, the scholarship is awarded annually to ten different seventh-graders across NC.
Congratulations to Tim Towner of Gastonia, North Carolina! The contest, “Celebrate 5/29 and Win $5,529 for College!”, selected Tim Towner’s name at random from a large list of entries. Towner will receive his prize as a contribution to his children’s NC 529 Accounts.
There are many ways to go about this, and the process will be a little different for each student. You’ll need to devote some time to doing research, and talk to your high school counselor, teachers, and mentors to get all the information you need to decide. Here are a few ways you can narrow down your choices. To research North Carolina colleges and universities, both public and private, click the button below.
College is around the corner. With only a year or two left until graduation, it’s time to start wrapping up those applications. If you’re serious about higher education, then you know that the application process really starts during your junior year of high school.
Everyone knows that an NC 529 Account is one of the best ways to save for an education. An NC 529 Plan is easy, effective, and anyone can contribute to it. Parents, family, and friends can all do their part to pitch in for education.
High school students planning for college need this College Planning Guide. This guide walks students and parents through the steps to enroll in college.
Is it time to start planning for college? Here are four important college selection criteria to help you make your decision.
Colleges and universities are not one-size-fits-all, and you’ll want to determine the ones that most closely match your educational goals before applying. As you look ahead to college, there are many schools in North Carolina with a wide range of programs and costs. Read on to learn which options could be the best choice for you! Here’s an overview of the types of institutions in North Carolina, and there’s even more detail available on each school on the CFNC website.
Part of planning for college is figuring out whether you want to stay in-state or go to an out-of-state college. Some students can’t wait to strike out on their own and live in a different state, while others prefer (or need) to stay closer to family and friends. You may or may not have a strong preference either way, but it can be helpful to know some of the advantages of each. Many states offer their residents grant and scholarship money if they choose to go to college in-state
High school can sometimes seem like it will go on forever, but it won't. After school, you have to make a choice about what you want to do with your life. There are a number of factors involved in this decision. You may have financial constraints, or maybe you’re not sure what you want to do yet. Maybe you’re eager for a break from academics and want to try something new, or see the world.
College Prep classes are classes taught at an advanced level, to prepare you for the kind of coursework you’ll encounter in college. These could include Honors, Advanced Placement, and International Baccalaureate classes, and North Carolina has unique opportunities through Career and College Promise options. Choose courses that challenge you. They’re harder to get an A in, but they can strengthen your academic prep, and some grades are weighted and count for more when calculating your GPA.
The feeling of excitement is in the air. The thrill of anticipation is on the faces of thousands. The signal is given, and the crowd erupts in a deafening roar. The racers are off, and fans cheer the contestants toward the finish line. The first racer reaches the end and the stadium explodes into applause. The winner looks over the crowd and smiles triumphantly. They let out a giggle and a shrill cry of jubilation.
Students can save on college application costs by applying during College Application Week from Oct. 15 – 19. During this week, many North Carolina colleges and universities waive application fees. College Application Week is a part of College Foundation of North Carolina’s (CFNC) annual college-access event
People always tell students that college is important. They don’t always tell them why. Here are 8 good reasons for why students should go to college.
States are spearheading the initiative to face student debt head on as they encourage families to begin saving for the next generation now by taking advantage of 529 plans across the nation. The College Foundation of North Carolina (CFNC) and NC 529 are proud to join this coalition to help set up future generations for success.
Investments are a great opportunity to build a nest egg and save for the future. The three main types are stocks, bonds and cash investments; however, it’s important to note that investments can come in many forms such as buying a house, owning an art collection or gathering a selection of rare coins. Building a diverse portfolio can help you prepare for the future.
It’s a new year and a fresh start. Like many people, you’re probably lining up your goals for 2019 – one of which might be to save more money. In recent years, the most popular New Year’s resolutions have been to eat healthier, improve your life and make better financial decisions.
Anyone who has ever had a full-time job knows that job satisfaction is correlated to more than just the work you do on a daily basis or a paycheck. It’s usually a mixture of the daily grind, the people with whom you work, and the benefits your employer offers.
If there are children in your life — sons, daughters, nieces, nephews, grandchildren, and even godchildren — you know the joy it brings to watch them grow older. They may not even be your own children, but you are so proud of their growth and accomplishments in life — from watching them play with friends to witnessing their preschool graduation.
Are you constantly thinking about your to-do list? Do worries linger in the back of your mind all day, and sometimes even visit you as you lie awake at night? It’s easy to feel stressed about all the little things in your daily life that aren’t getting done.
Babies will be crawling towards a touchdown between the first and second quarters of the NC Central and A&T football game in Durham on Saturday, Nov. 17. These quickly-crawling babies will compete to win $529 contributed to an account in the NC 529 Plan, also known as the North Carolina’s National College Savings Program.
This Halloween, there’s no reason to get spooked by the prospect of paying for college. Instead, get prepared. We tell our kids all the time how important it is to prepare. Prepare for that big test. Prepare for that big game. Practice, practice, practice.
Enter The #NC529Halloween Costume Contest for a chance to win big for you and your future graduate! Share a picture of your child in his or her Halloween Costume on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, and use the hashtag #NC529Halloween for a chance to win $100 deposited directly into your NC 529 account!
We had so much fun at the Marbles Kids Museum Kick Off to Kindergarten this month that we want to continue celebrating the back-to-school excitement! We’re giving away Marbles admission tickets and tickets to the IMAX Theatre at Marbles to celebrate the first day of school.
The graduates cross the stage and the diplomas are awarded. Adoring parents look on proudly as excellence in academics and the arts are announced. The graduates are bursting with excitement, but still a little fearful about what comes next.
Warmer weather is here and that means it’s time for summer vacations! Take a step back from everyday life and shake things up; even a short period of time where you can break out of your routine can really refresh and rejuvenate your mind. However, the perfect vacation is going to take some preparation – including plenty of planning and saving.
With rising tuition costs, North Carolina families are seeking convenient and affordable options to pay for college. College Foundation of North Carolina (CFNC), a free college assistance service of the State of North Carolina, is committed to raising awareness about college savings plans in the workplace that can help secure a student’s future.
Starting kindergarten is a big life event for both students and parents. Like with most big changes, the key to a successful transition into a new environment is preparation. Upon entering kindergarten, students should be on their way to mastering skills like spelling their name, memorizing their address, reciting the alphabet and more.
As an expectant parent, you have a lot to think about. Where your baby will go to college in 18 years is probably one of the last things on your mind. It’s hectic enough planning your doctor’s appointments, post-birth arrangements and even what color your baby’s room will be —there’s hardly time to think about the future.
When it comes to saving money to pay for college, many parents are doing it the old-fashioned way: that is to say, they’re hoping for a miracle! A survey conducted in January of this year found that 57 percent of the parents polled had saved less than $10,000. But the survey found that parents do have high savings hopes.
When Kate opened an NC 529 Account for the first of her four children, she was still paying off her own school loans from undergraduate and law school. She had been the first in her family to go to college and she scrimped, saved, and worked all the way through school and still came out with a sizable 10-year loan that she eventually refinanced into a 20-year loan.
There are optimists and there are pessimists. There are leaders and there are followers. And in the world of economics, there are savers and there are spenders.
Picture this. Your child strides confidently across the stage at their high school graduation, shakes the principal’s hand, and receives their much-anticipated diploma. Now, imagine being able to celebrate your graduate’s success by handing them money to put towards higher education expenses.
State Employee’s Credit Union (SECU) is increasing the rate paid on the Federally-Insured Deposit Account (FIDA) from 1.5% to 1.75%. This is one of the best rates on a federally insured investment option in a 529 we have seen thus far!
The bottom line is: If you’re a North Carolina taxpayer, check with a qualified tax advisor before using your NC 529 funds for K-12 tuition expenses or before rolling over to a 529 ABLE account. North Carolina has not yet expanded state tax law to correspond to the recent federal changes.
How do you picture your little one’s future? Bustling around a hospital saving lives? Reporting on the nightly news? Being a professional athlete?
Crawlers raced to the finish line during the pre-game show at the UNC vs. N.C. State men’s basketball game on January 27th. Six babies went head-to-head during the second Diapers to Dorms Dash in hopes of winning some college cash. As Ramses cheered on the babies, it was one-year-old Austin Tillman who was first to cross the finish line.
From reading bedtime stories and stacking blocks to opening a college savings account, like an NC 529 Account, parents begin preparing their children for higher education almost as soon as they are born. That’s why the Diapers to Dorms Dash that was held on December 30, 2017, was such a wonderful fit for the NC 529 Plan.
Not sure what to give as a gift this holiday season? Make a contribution to a college savings account. Friends and family can contribute as little as $25 to a student’s NC 529 Account. The contribution is a meaningful gift that keeps on giving.
From baby’s first teetering steps until your child strides across the high school graduation stage, you’re focused on the future. You read stories and do homework to support their education.
Future kindergartners and their parents had a blast at the first of two annual Kickoff to Kindergarten events that are sponsored by the North Carolina College Savings Program (NC 529 Plan).
The first years of your child’s life are filled with countless milestones: crawling, walking, talking, making friends, learning to count and read. There were first teeth and new words spoken.
Graduation day for the high school class of 2030 feels like a long way away. But this year, a different kind of graduation is upon them — preschool graduation! In the fall, the class of 2030 will be entering kindergarten and starting their journey through the wonder and excitement of grade school.
At the close of this spring’s drawing to celebrate College Savings Day, the NC 529 Plan had 135,920 active Accounts and, of those, 4,343 Account owners entered the drawing.
College Savings Day will be held on May 29. This is an excellent opportunity to learn more about how to save for college. Bray Creech has highlighted four key points that pertain to 529 Plans for this article in Citizen-Times.
Timeka Ruffin is a representative of the College Foundation of North Carolina. She talks with the morning show about teaching kids to save.
At the NC 529 Plan®, our everyday focus is on helping families plan and pay for college. We’re passionate about this effort, and we fully recognize that North Carolina students rely on their teachers, administrators and other caring adults to help them reach the goal of going to college too. During Teacher Appreciation Week and always, we extend our gratitude to the men and women who guide the education of our students.
Friday, April 28, is Teach Your Child to Save Day, and WECT News elected to share tips on kids saving from the NC 529 National College Savings Program.
North Carolina’s National College Savings Program, known as the NC 529 Plan, originally launched with a single investment option and transitioned $9.5 million in assets and 2,185 accounts to a multiple option format in 2001. The current NC 529 Plan, with 13 different investment options, now has a fund balance of just over $2 billion and 135,524 active accounts, 91% of which are owned by North Carolina residents.
April 28 is National Teach Your Child to Save Day and the NC 529® Plan is encouraging parents to turn their tax refunds into a teaching tool.
April is Financial Literacy Month. The goal of Financial Literacy Month is to help Americans become savvier when it comes to their money. From creating a budget to learning about investing, this is an ideal time to pause and evaluate your family’s level of financial knowledge.
We’re going to celebrate College Savings Day (May 29) by giving away $1,529! Anyone with an existing NC 529 Account or who opens one is eligible to enter. Don’t miss out on a chance to add $1,529 to your college savings in the NC 529 Plan.
One of the most common questions parents have about an NC 529® Plan is when should I set up an NC 529 Account? It’s a simple question with a straightforward answer — now! That’s because it’s never too early to start saving for your child’s higher education.
When it comes to saving your money, it’s important that you understand how a college savings vehicle works. We know that investing in a savings account for college can be a little confusing, especially if you are not familiar with financial jargon about your investment.
The North Carolina National College Savings Program (NC 529 Plan) joined Marble’s Kids Museum in Raleigh, NC, for their Fourth Annual Kids Car Fair. During the fair, children are introduced to a variety of career fields, from news casters to dentists. More than 30 local professionals participated in the event and children had a wonderful time exploring various paths that they may pursue one day.
Congratulations to Mark Pearn of Kernersville. As posted in the News & Record, Mark won an extra $529 to add to the NC 529 College Savings Account he owns for his son. He did so by entering the Lucky 3 Drawing that was held by the North Carolina’s National College Savings Plan during the later part of 2016.
The NC 529 Lucky 3 Drawing was most recently held in the Fall 2016. Those who contributed to their NC 529 Account during the drawing were entered for a chance to have an additional $529 added to their Account. We’re pleased to have had so many entries, as this means many people took another step in saving for college.
New Year’s Resolutions are all about improving your life and making plans for a better future. Of course, we all want to be grateful, healthy, and good to those around us. The beginning of a New Year is also a great time to consider financial and future goals.
As parents, we always want the best for our children. But in the busy eighteen years from birth through high school graduation, sometimes preparation for a child’s future higher education gets put on the back burner.
From baby’s first gurgle or giggle, parents begin to dream of their child’s future and try to figure out how to handle the associated costs of parenthood. Some parents immediately dive into saving for their child’s education.
During the holidays and on special occasions, it’s fun to spoil the children in our lives. Twenty-five dollars can buy a variety of gifts – balls, gift cards and games. As WFMY notes, it can also give the gift of education.
The US News and World Report recently featured a Durham, NC grandfather who is helping his family save for college. Instead of giving physical gifts during the holiday season, he is contributing money to his grandson’s college savings plan each year. And, he’s not alone. According to the article, 84% of parents would prefer that their children receive money for college in place of physical gifts during the holidays.
Holiday giving can be tricky. Each year children receive a pile of wrapped items that they plow through quickly and inevitably forget after a brief period of time.
This holiday season, give your loved one a meaningful present that can be cherished for years to come — the gift of education. Most children receive trendy toys or clothes that will be lost, forgotten or outgrown within months or even weeks. Think outside the box and give a gift with true, lasting value.
With the cost of a college education rising every year, some parents are nervous about how to handle the expense of higher education for their children.But don’t throw up your hands. Many families find it possible to put at least some money away for college and to explore the variety of other financial aid options available to help with the rest.
Many families feel up to their ears in expenses, and stretching their paychecks to save for things such as retirement and college may seem less important than day-to-day needs. So, with a limited amount of discretionary income, how do you decide? It’s your choice about how much of that income to put away in savings and what your priorities will be.
Choosing which college to attend is one of the most important decisions you can make. This will influence more than just your future career – it may also impact who you meet, where you end up living and the opportunities presented to you. But with so many options out there, you might have trouble narrowing down your list.
Every year, National Grandparents Day falls on the first Sunday after Labor Day. In honor of this year’s special day, we’d like to thank our grandparents for everything they do. After all, grandparents make life grand, and we don’t know what we’d do without them.
Saving for college is an important aspect of planning for your family’s future. College Savings Month is a great time to inspire more parents to open college savings accounts or to commit to increasing their college savings goals in their existing accounts.
Dropping your child off on the first day of kindergarten will probably be emotional for both of you. The first day of school can be exciting, but your child may be nervous about being left there for the first time. At least you can reassure your child you’ll be together again at the end of the day and eager to talk about this new experience.
Marbles Kids Museum hosted it’s annual “Kickoff to Kindergarten” event, in partnership with the NC 529 Plan. There was information about how parents can use the NC 529 Plan to start saving for college for their rising kindergartners. This was the second event hosted by Marbles Museum aimed at getting kids ready to start school.
August 20, 2016 was Kickoff to Kindergarten. Rising kindergartners in the Raleigh area and their families were offered free admission to Marbles Kids Museum to get a jump start on learning what they would need to start school. The event was sponsored by the NC 529 Savings Plan.
August 20, 2016 was “Kickoff to Kindergarten” day, with Marbles Kids Museum in Raleigh offering free admission to rising kindergartners and their parents. The NC 529 Plan was a sponsor of this event; NC 529 Plan staff provided sessions for parents on saving for college for their kids.
Can you picture it? Your son or daughter all grown-up, dressed in a cap and gown, and striding across the stage to receive a high school diploma. It’s a thought that makes a parent’s heart fill with pride and emotion; your baby has made it through the early years and is now ready to take on future challenges!
Go Ask Mom, a resource for Triangle moms on the WRAL-TV website, featured the Kickoff to Kindergarten at Marbles Kids Museum in its rundown of weekend events for families. Kickoff to Kindergarten was sponsored by the NC 529 Savings Plan, and was designed to help kids become acclimated to the sights, sounds and activities of kindergarten before their first day. The event was free for rising kindergartners and their families.
Takeila Hall, College Foundation of North Carolina Regional Representative, spoke with WGHP on how to avoid taking on student loan debt by saving for college using an NC 529 Plan. She emphasized that it is never to early, nor too late, to start saving and help relieve some of the burden of college tuition.
Starting kindergarten is a big step for your little one—and your family. Whether it’s your first child or your fourth, preparing for the big day never seems to get any less chaotic. There’s a lot to do and learn before sending a young one off to school for the first time.
A recent survey shows that many parents are not prepared to pay for their child’s college education. Tameka Ruffin from the College Foundation of North Carolina talks about those results, and shares how to start saving for your children’s college education with the NC 529 Plan.
May is College Education Month, and 5/29 Day is a day to promote saving for college through a state-sponsored 5/29 plan. Almost every state offers it’s own college savings plan, although each has it’s own set of features.
NC 529 Savings Plan administrators teamed up with Marbles Kids Museum to hold a celebration for “5/29 Savings Play Day.” It was an opportunity for parents to learn about ways to save for their children’s college while their children played with the tools and toys in the museum.
On May 29, 2016, North Carolina 529 Plan administrators teamed with Marbles Kids Museum to host a “Savings Play Day.” This was an opportunity for Moms and Dads to learn about saving for their kids’ college years while playing with the fascinating tools and toys in this great museum.
First of all, congratulations! Earning a scholarship is a big deal and your student likely worked hard to receive it. You’re probably relieved that this scholarship will reduce some, or maybe even all, of what you’ve been planning to cover in college expenses.
As you cuddle your newborn, you likely dream of how you’ll lavish your child with anything and everything for a “good life.” As you gain more parental experience, you’ll likely soon realize how much your child learns from finding out how much he or she can personally do.
As you dream of your child’s future, your vision probably includes college. If so, then the sooner you start planning, the easier it will be to have money on hand when it’s time to help with college expenses.
Congratulations on opening an NC 529 account to prepare for the future! You’re joining more than 130,000 other families already saving in the NC 529 Plan for a loved one’s college expenses.
Saving for a college education for your children is more important than ever, but on a limited budget, putting away money every month can be difficult. But the reality is that whatever amount you can save for a college education can help.
Have an NC 529 Plan for a soon-to-be high school graduate? This is an exciting—and busy!—time for your family. Now is the time to be sure the money you’ve saved can be used for your grad’s college education. Don’t stress, we’re here to help!
It probably feels like just yesterday you were holding your newborn children in your arms, and you probably feel just as protective over them now as the day they were born. But are you protecting their future too? You won’t be able to take care of them forever, and that’s why now’s the time to start saving for their college education! A higher education will give your children the tools they need to be successful on their own.
Many people don’t start talking about college with their children until they’re in high school. But by then, college is only four years away or less! This can be overwhelming to students as the questions start pouring in: Where do you want to go? What will you major in? How much does it cost? What do you need to do to get in?
How would you like to give a child a lasting gift for Christmas? Instead of toys and clothes, consider opening up an NC 529 Plan for saving for college early.
Tameika Ruffin, College Foundation of North Carolina Regional Representative, shares how giving a holiday gift with the NC 529 Plan is an excellent way to help a child with college savings.
Fewer American parents with children under age 18 are saving for college this year — down more than 50% from the previous year.
“With over 100 colleges and universities across the Tar Heel state, both recent high school grads and returning learners are sure to find a place to continue their education.
The goal of North Carolina College Application Week is to provide every graduating high school senior the opportunity to apply to college online through CFNC.org. Special focus is placed on students who would be the first in their families to attend college and students who may have not otherwise seriously considered attending college.
Sarita Broadway, a CFNC Regional Representative, talks with WRAL about the wide variety of resources that are available at CFNC.org to help North Carolina families as they plan, apply and pay for college.