Imagine getting an acceptance letter and paying for tuition weren’t an issue when it came to college.
A dream scenario right? Well, if that were the case, Harvard might have to start building a few more freshmen dorms. A majority of the 8,776 students in The Princeton Review’s annual College Hopes & Worries Survey named the Cambridge, Mass. Ivy League school as the institution they would most like to attend. (Stanford, Princeton, New York University, and Yale rounded out the list.)
While it is fun to fantasize, the reality is that cost is an issue when choosing a college. The survey also stated that 71% of respondents expect the cost of their degree to exceed $75,000, and 84% said financial aid will be “very necessary.” Also, The Princeton Review reports that when asked what their biggest worry about applying to college is, 37% selected the answer “will get into first-choice College, but won’t have sufficient funds/financial aid to attend it” and 27% chose “will take on major loan debt for college.”
When it comes to choosing the right school, families should sit down and discuss financial logistics, experts say. According to Kiersten Murphy, of Murphy College Consultants, LLC, “The bottom line is that families have to evaluate how much out of pocket expenses they will have and, most families air on the side of what is more affordable.”