The College Planning Advice You Thought You Already Knew

By Andrew Rosen via

The other day I had dinner with some wonderful new clients. While enjoying our first bottle of great vino (B Wise Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir – for the curious minds), we started getting into a conversation about colleges. They have a few kids like me, although theirs are a couple years older. Despite the age differences, we had a lot of similarities in this conversation.  We both have intentions of sending our children to college and would like to pay for their college tuition.

As the conversation continued, the husband (I’ll call him Cowboy John) gave me some profound advice. I knew instantly it would be the topic of my next blog; as it has the potential to impact many others in similar situations.

The advice!

So, what was this sage advice Cowboy John mentioned? One of his friends works in the admissions office of a very reputable university. He asked her for a recommendation on how to give their kids a leg up on their collegiate careers. The answer was simple, yet brilliant (like most good advice, I find). She said, “start showing colleges to your kids early.”

To be fair, I’ll bet most people reading this are thinking: “Duh, I plan on showing my children colleges in high school.” However, that is not the advice.

What she meant was, show them colleges before high school — as in middle school, or even grade school.  After reading that, most of you are now thinking:  “Andrew, you expect me to take my kids on college tours when they are 10 years old? That’s bonkers!” But, think of it this way. You are on a family vacation in Philadelphia. Why not drive through Penn, Drexel, and Temple? Perhaps you visit Boston. So check out BU, BC, Harvard, MIT, or the 55 other institutions in the Boston area. Maybe, for some crazy reason, you decide to go on vacation in Delaware. Why not stop by my alma mater – the University of Delaware?

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