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A friend of mine who went to graduate school to earn an MBA at Columbia recalled how ill-equipped he felt for the heavy load of finance courses. And this mathematical discrepancy between him and many of his peers was never more apparent than during the study groups that formed. Those who came from finance and accounting […]

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Getting in (to a famous college)

Seth Godin’s latest podcast episode, Getting In (to a Famous College), manages to explain how to get into a famous college, point out the risks of playing that game, and recommend alternative paths, all in just 30 minutes. It’s worth a listen for anyone who aspires to chase, or to detach from, that coveted offer of admission. That […]

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Diminishing returns of overwork

Given that your average college-bound student probably works at least 40 hours per week between school, homework, and activities, you might check out this article and consider the referenced research that shows: Working more doesn’t mean working better. Productivity dramatically decreases with longer hours and drops off completely at 55 hours per week. On average, […]

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What straight-A students get wrong

Adam Grant’s recent New York Times op-ed, “What Straight-A Students Get Wrong,” is pitched to college students. But just about all of the messages contained within (1) are equally true for high school students, and (2) make some people deeply uncomfortable. You can see it in the article’s comments. The defensiveness and outright anger from […]

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The psychology of choosing gifts, and colleges

“How Psychology Can Help You Choose a Great Gift,” published by UC Berkeley’s Great Good Science Center, offers four tips to better gift giving: 1. Choose practicality over expense or quality. Usable beats fancy in the long run. 2. Go for long-term satisfaction, not initial enthusiasm. Parents have all seen a child react with joy to […]

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How to withdraw 529 plan money

Saving money in a 529 plan is just the first financially astute step. You’ve then got to withdraw it—at that right time—and use it for the right expenses for you to reap all of the intended benefits. And trusted source Consumer Reports lays out the steps in this article.

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It’s all going to be OK

Parents watching kids go through the college admissions process already know how the story ends. You don’t know the specifics yet. You don’t know which colleges will say yes or if your kid will hit it off with their future roommate. You don’t know what job your student will hold after college, where they’ll live, […]

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Of course it matters where you go

“It’s not where you go to college, it’s what you do while you’re there.” I say it in different ways, but the overarching message is always the same. I believe that principle. It’s why I started Collegewise and why I am still here 19 years later. But the message has never been, “Just pick any […]

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On the benefits of sleep

The research keeps piling up on the benefits of enough (and the harms of the lack of) sleep, for both teens and adults. Here’s a good summary from the Washington Post, “Our brains benefit from sleep. Here’s why, and how parents can help teens get plenty of it.”

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The old-fashioned way

AT-AT

When I was 8, I got the most coveted item on my Christmas wish list—a Star Wars AT-AT. But the box depicted a number of action-figure accessories that turned out not to be included, like various backpacks and climbing ropes and laser pistols. I felt ripped off, duped by false advertising. So I found the only […]

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