About Suzanne Shaffer

Suzanne Shaffer has been a member since April 8th 2011, and has created 781 posts from scratch.

Suzanne Shaffer's Bio

Suzanne Shaffer's Websites

This Author's Website is

Suzanne Shaffer's Recent Articles

Scholarship Friday: 10 Scholarship Boards to Follow on Pinterest


scholarship boardsPinterest is an excellent place to find scholarships. If you follow these boards, you could unearth some scholarships, get scholarship tips, and gather a wealth of scholarship information. If you aren’t on Pinterest, you should be. It’s easy to follow these scholarship boards—just click on the links and start gathering scholarships.











From High School to College…


…What your student needs during the transition.

high school to college

–photo courtesy of University Parent–

Now that your student is done celebrating high school graduation and ready to settle into summer, it’s the best time to gather important information from high school before it gets forgotten in the bustle of back-to-school excitement.

Grab a folder – or a flash drive for the computer – and save the following items for the fall:

  • Previous college credit: Before registering for fall classes, students must provide the university with all college and dual credit information. Save paperwork from previous credits or AP classes, and contact the university to see what they need. Most schools need an official transcript if your student completed credits at another school, and if he/she received an AP credit by exam, those results must also be sent to the university. Have your student contact the high school to request official transcripts, and request unofficial transcripts for your own records. If the official transcripts come to you, be sure not to open the envelopes, and forward them to the university.
  • High school work: Hopefully, your student didn’t throw his senior year’s work in the air, singing, “School’s out for summer!” and leave it behind, never to look back. Important papers, tests and notes can come in handy – especially for overwhelmed freshmen taking college courses, possibly learning how to study for the first time. Professors don’t take valuable class time to review what students learned in high school, so students should do that on their own.
  • Scholarship donor contact information: If your student received a scholarship or grant to attend college, a big “thank-you” is in order. Donors, alumnae, philanthropists and even corporations that provide college scholarships love to hear how their money is used. Sending a formal letter after the first semester is a great way to thank them for their contribution and explain how the first semester went. Cultivating those relationships can be the best tactic to ensure more scholarship money, if they make ongoing gifts.
  • Teacher and coach contact information: Many high school seniors leave a small pond feeling like a big fish – and the first few weeks in college can be overwhelming. If your student had a special relationship with a teacher, coach or mentor, that doesn’t have to end when he/she moves on to different waters. An e-mail or phone call from your student to a trusted adult can be encouraging and provide them with support beyond their parents, and thank-you notes go a long way to show appreciation for teachers who have made an impact. Keeping up with these relationships is important because past teachers can be a good reference for students looking for on-campus jobs or internships.


This guest post was provided by Sarah Schupp, founder and CEO of University Parent Media in Boulder, Colo. UPM publishes print and online guides for parents of students at universities and colleges in 38 states. Online at www.universityparent.com.

The Top 3 Summer Jobs for Students


Summer is a time to relax and recuperate, but it’s also a great opportunity to gain work experience and make money. With a challenging job market facing them after graduation, it’s essential for students to buff up their resumes and make connections while they’re still enrolled in school. For college students wondering about their summer work prospects, here are the best summer jobs fields and positions to explore:


summer jobsIf you’re a student looking for part-time or full-time work during summer break, consider interning at a company you’re interested in working for after graduation. There are a variety of internship positions only open to college students, where you can earn course credits in addition to professional experience. Fastweb has a large list of nationwide internships in various different industries that you can apply to based on your interests or major.

While many internships are unpaid, they all offer the opportunity to make connections and gain new skills, which will pay off financially in the future when you’re searching for a job. After graduating, you’ll be able to list your intern work on your resume and use your former supervisors as references. Your experiences can also help you become more confident and focused during your post-college job search because you’ll have a better idea of your own professional abilities.

Volunteer Work

summer jobsSimilar to interning, volunteering can be useful in helping you decide what you’re passionate about and what field you should pursue after college. Sites like Idealist and Indeed can connect you with a volunteer program that correlates to your passions. So whether you’re interested in education, public policy, environmental issues, or humanitarian work, you can find a position that’s well matched and right for you.

In addition to being professionally valuable, volunteer work can also be personally satisfying. Volunteering allows you to serve others, gain fresh perspectives about the world around you, and gives you a chance to work in a field you’re passionate about outside of academic pursuits.

Freelance Writing or Designing

summer jobsIf you’re a good writer or designer looking for more flexible work this summer, you should consider doing freelance work. Freelancing gives you the freedom to create your own schedule and work from home, since most positions are open to telecommuters. If you like setting your own work pace and want the opportunity to improve your skills as a writer and designer in the digital realm, then a freelance job is right for you.

Since there are so many online businesses and companies that utilize the web for marketing, you can find writing and design jobs fairly easily. Available freelance jobs include web or graphic designer, website content writer, blogger, and social media developer. You can find a position that meets your skill set or knowledge, as well as create a freelancer profile, on sites like Guru.

Many freelance jobs don’t pay well at first but you’ll be able to set higher prices for your work once you have more experience. You can become a more desirable freelancer over time by adding work to your resume and increasing your online exposure. You’ll be able to send links of your work and show that you have an online presence to future hiring managers.

Freelancing, volunteering, and interning, all offer the important opportunity to gain professional experience in fields that you may want to pursue after college. If a position you want is unpaid or doesn’t pay well, you can always take on a part-time server or retail job in order to supplement your income. While food service and retail work can help you gain customer service experience and make extra cash, they don’t offer a career path that’s useful or interesting to most college students. This summer, try to invest your time and energy into a job that can improve your professional skills, add value to your resume, and help you land a job after graduation.


Javaher Nooryani is a writer and editor based in Denver, CO. She has a BA in American Literature & Culture from UCLA and a Masters in English & American Literature from NYU. As a former tutor and advisor, Javaher is passionate about higher education and is glad to share her knowledge on CollegeFocus, a website that helps students deal with the challenges of college.

Wednesdays Parent: Test Prep-The Key to the College Kingdom


tutoring test prepThere are two standardized tests that are accepted by almost every university: the SAT and the ACT. Choosing which of these two tests is right for your skills and study habits can increase your likelihood of scoring high enough for the top universities as well as make the standardized testing process much less stressful.

Even though there are test optional colleges available (and the debate continues on whether or not they are truly test optional) the standardized tests are still the golden key that colleges use to measure academic capability in college.

Here are five reasons why your student should take test prep seriously:

  1. The majority of students do not prepare for standardized tests.
  2. Higher test scores mean more merit aid. A high score on the PSAT alone can mean a full ride scholarship.
  3. Preparing for the test reduces stress.
  4. Doing practice tests help you get used to time constraints and complete the actual test on time.
  5. Colleges use these test scores to compare you with other students.

Due to the differences between the two tests, it is beneficial to pick the test that will be the best fit for you. The ACT is a better pick for someone that has had a strong academic career in high school. If you have not taken a strong math and science course load, than the SAT will probably be a better option for you. To do well on the ACT, you need to have memorized math and science concepts and formulas, which is fairly easy if you have a strong background in math and science.

Whichever test you decide to take, there is no better way to prepare than taking practice tests. Take as many practice tests as you possibly can. This not only familiarizes you with the types of questions you will see on the test, but also prepares you for working under time limits. On both tests, the time constraints are difficult. Taking practice tests helps you to get faster at doing problems, so that you can finish more of the problems when you take the actual test. It may be wise to take practice tests of both the SAT and the ACT to see which one you do better on. Taking a real version of both of the tests is also not a bad idea.

Read Wendy’s Post: Ins and Outs of Standardized Tests


Wednesday’s child may be full of woe but Wednesday’s Parent can substitute action for anxiety. Each Wednesday Wendy and I will provide parent tips to get and keep your student on the college track. It’s never too late or too early to start!

The bonus is that this Wednesday Wendy and I will host Twitter chat #CampusChat at 9pm ET/6pm PT. Our guest this week will be Claire Griffith of Directs Hits Education discussing the SAT vs ACT.

Wednesday’s Parent will give twice the info and double the blog posts on critical parenting issues by clicking on the link at the end of the article from parentscountdowntocollegecoach to pocsmom.com and vice versa.

What Path Should You Take For an Investment Career?


college applicationsInvestment careers, although challenging, can nevertheless be very rewarding and fulfilling. The investment industry is quite a dynamic industry which is ever changing. If you wish to make a career in the sector, you need to be willing to work hard and put in long hours, but the rewards are well worth it.

A wide variety of investment careers

There are various investment careers that one can embark on in the investment industry. They include:

  • Investment managers, who handle the clients’ money and invest it in equities and bonds. Their role also involves providing sound investment advice and options to their clients.
  • Research analysts, who undertake fundamental investment research as well as valuation. Their main role is to determine the growth potential as well as the future outlook of the investment in question.
  • Investment bankers, who assist in the sale of stock by businesses and governments to members of the public. They can also assist these entities in floating their shares in the stock market.
  • Client account managers, whose main role is to maintain good and fruitful relationships with clients by communicating regularly with them about ongoing investments.

A mathematics degree, while not essential, would help you get into an investment career since number crunching is an important skill to have. A finance degree or an MBA would be even better to have. You should also not expect to enter into investment management straight after graduating, but should aim to start off as an investment research analyst first then build up from there.

Wesley Edens: an investment management success story

Wesley Edens is a successful investment manager who serves as a good example of just how much you can achieve in the investment world if you work hard and diligently. Mr Edens is a principal as well as the Co-Chairman of the Board of Directors of Fortress Investment Group LLC. He is in charge of the company’s private equity business as well as a wide variety of publicly and privately traded portfolio companies. In the past Mr Edens has also worked for BlackRock Financial Management Inc. and Lehman Brothers as a managing director in both companies.

Investment careers require you to put in a lot of work and grueling long hours, the compensation can be extremely high. The nature of the work is also not only demanding but also unpredictable. All the same, it remains an exciting and very rewarding way to make a living.

Scholarship Friday: 10 $1000 Scholarships


This is a great way to start the weekend–10 $1000 scholarships for college. Encourage your student to apply to all of them. Some of them start at 13 years of age–start early!

$1000 scholarships1. CollegeWeekLive $1000 Monthly Scholarship


The CollegeWeekLive Monthly $1,000 Scholarship is open to both U.S. and non-U.S. students. Applicants must enroll no later than the fall of 2018 in an accredited post-secondary institution of higher learning (college, university or trade school). Applicants are eligible to win only if they register online at www.CollegeWeekLive.com, login to CollegeWeekLive between the 1st and last day of the month, and visit 5 colleges (go to their page) to be considered in the month’s scholarship drawing.

2. Scholarship Detective $1000 Scholarship


To enter just complete this application including a 140 character or less statement on how you plan to use the scholarship money. We will be awarding one scholarship for the best reason. Deadline for entry is May 31, 2015.

3. Cappex $1000 Scholarship


Apply today for a chance to win a $1000 scholarship from Cappex by filling out an easy form. Applicants must be a current high school student. This is a monthly scholarship and the next deadline to apply is April 30, 2015.

4. Gen and Kelly Tanabe $1000 Scholarship


This scholarship is for 9th-12th grade high school, college, or graduate student including adult students who are legal residents of the U.S. and currently in school or planning to start school within the next 12 months. The application deadline is July 31, 2015.

5. $1000 Design-a-Sign Scholarship


“Design-a-Sign” $1000 Scholarship Contest from Signazon Let your creativity help pay for college with the 5th Annual “Design-A-Sign” contest. Applicants must be between 13 and 18 years of age. The application deadline is May 29, 2015.

6. MoolahSPOT $1000 Scholarship


The $1,000 MoolahSPOT Scholarship is sponsored by MoolahSPOT.com and helps students of any age pay for higher education. The scholarship is a competition based on a short essay. Students who are 16 or older can apply. Application deadline is April 30, 2015.

7. Sallie Mae $1,000 Sweepstakes Official Rules


Sallie Mae’s $1,000 Sweepstakes is open only to legal residents. Entrants may enter the Sweepstakes by completing the online registration form. This is a monthly drawing.

8. Noodle $1,000 College Scholarship


Enter for a chance to win a $1,000 scholarship. Applicants must be 18 or older. Register on Noodle for a chance to win.

9. Chegg $1000 Weekly Scholarship


Chegg awards a $1,000 scholarship every week to one super student and choose the winner based on their 2-3 sentence response to the week’s question.

10. Niche $1,000 College Survey scholarship


College students review your school for a chance to win a $1000 monthly scholarship!