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Wednesday’s Parent: Stress During College Prep


teen stressStress. It’s a killer. Parents and teens deal with stress on a daily basis; and when the college prep season arrives, the stress intensifies. Do you know what to expect and how to deal with it? Just as with any family situation, anticipating problems that can or might arise should help you respond properly and deal with stress during college prep.

Imagine these scenarios

  • Your teen announces he’s going to die if he doesn’t get into his first choice college.
  • You hear other parents talking about their student to his headed to the Ivies.
  • Your teen says she can’t possibly go to college because her boyfriend isn’t going there.
  • After multiple tries on the SAT, your teen announces that she’s never going to get into any college.
  • It’s been months since your teen started his essay and all he’s written is–”My life-changing moment is . . .”
  • On a college visit, your teen says, “I’m just not feeling it.”
  • Your son is sitting in the middle of his bedroom floor surrounded by college catalogs with a lost puppy dog look on his face.
  • Your daughter has a tentative lists of colleges that are completely out of your price range and she starts crying when you point that out.

What’s your first reaction?

First you walk outside and scream. How could you have possibly given birth to this person and who has taken over the body of your once agreeable child. Then you take a deep breath, and respond. Never, and I mean never, let your teen see you stressed and frustrated. Your attitude will rub off on them. Their stress will increase with your stress. So stay calm and remember that this too shall pass.

Where do you turn when you need help dealing with stress?

As luck would have it (or perfect foresight), tonight’s #CampusChat at 9PM ET will help you answer all your questions about teen stress, especially around the college prep process. On Twitter chat #CampusChat Wednesday, April 23 at 9pm ET/6pm PT, hosted by Wednesday’s Parent, guest Fern Weis of YOUR FAMILY MATTERS, LLChttp://www.yourfamilymatterscoach.com provides her tips and suggestions for dealing with stress during the college process. Later, check out Smart College Visit http://www.smartcollegevisit.com for a recap of the chat.

Read this to learn how to join the chat.

Read Wendy’s blog: Stressing Out the College Process

Apps for College Visits


college visit appsParents and students are using apps for all stages within the college prep process. Imagine being able to be guided on a tour with your smartphone. Or being able to plan college visits before you go on them. Or being able to organize all your visits to search and find the schools by uploading photos to serve as a reminder of your visit.

These apps for college visits can enhance your campus visits:


Quad2Quad’s mobile App takes the hassle out of college visit planning. Quad2Quad is a virtual travel assistant, curating and assembling the most important college data for the user. Quad2Quad enables families to plan college visits without spending hours combing multiple college websites.

College Visits

With the Welcome to College CollegeVisits iPhone App, you can organize your college visits. Use the App to search and find schools to add to your list, rate your college visits, keep personal notes on each visit, share your feedback with others, and upload photos to remember your time on each campus.

Student Bridge

StudentBridge is an augmented reality app that allows students to access information during a campus tour or while roaming campus alone. Someone might be looking at a residence hall, but may not be able to get in to see what life is like. If they click a video that’s overlaid on top of that building, they can then see some content that’s produced by the university that gives a good sense of what happens in that building.

College Specific Apps

Colleges are now creating their own apps to help students navigate around campus. Two such apps were created by Smart College Visit: Visit Virginia Tech and Explore UNH. These apps offer an electronic map, driving directions, a walking tour, admissions information, restaurant and hotel information, historical sights, and more. Visit the college’s website to find out if that college offers an app to its students.


The Best of Mom-Approved Tips


best of mom-approved tipsThis week, I thought it would be great to gather my all-time favorite posts of the best of Mom-Approved Tips. In case you missed some of them, here they are, gathered together in one place.

Practice Tough Love

Parenting is easy if you give into your child’s every whim, never be consistent with discipline, or simply don’t pay attention. Parenting children who strive for excellence in everything requires some tough love. And tough love is not easy; especially when it comes to the raising a motivated, educated, and successful student.

How do you, as a parent, raise a child that’s motivated to strive for excellence where their education is concerned?

Don’t Fear the Gap Year

Don’t fear the gap year. Not every student is ready for college after high school. Some simply aren’t mature enough, and others simply don’t know where they want to go or what they want to study. And if this is the case, would you want to spend thousands of dollars on college if it meant they dropped out their first semester? Of course you wouldn’t want to do that.

Teach Your Kids the Value of Money

When your kids are away at college they are going to be responsible for their own spending (and saving). There will be offers galore from credit card companies because college students are their biggest target market. If they hook them while in college it usually means they have them for the rest of their lives.

A Different Take on Helicopter Parenting

It’s no surprise that parents have become so involved in their kids’ lives that school administrators have begun to label us; helicopter parent, snow plow parent, and bulldozer parent. But it can’t all be bad; after all, parents are actually involved. Is this a bad thing? As with anything there are extremes. And it’s possible that a few bad parenting experiences have shed a negative light on all of us.

Top 10 Tips for Parents

On Monday’s I dispense my parent advice and this week I shared some of my past “Top 10 Tips for Parents”. Some might be reality checks, some will provide you with new information, and some are just for fun.

Inside the Mind of a College-Bound Teen

The stress of the college admissions season weighs heavy on your college-bound teen. I read an old article today from a NY Times blog and I felt it was worth sharing to help you go inside the mind of a college-bound teen and see just exactly what they are feeling.

Getting a Degree Using Distance Learning


distance learningHere’s the simple truth for you and your child – moving away to attend a university is an expensive prospect, and, in the current economic climate, makes it increasingly difficult to pay room and board.

A college education is expensive– for everything from accommodation, course textbooks, tuition fees, and food – and many parents find it hard to cover those costs without skyrocketing debts. It could be time to look into how you can stop your child suffering financial hardship.

One option is a distance learning degree, as supplied by numerous top-quality providers. While your student will miss out on the social aspects of the campus lifestyle, they also won’t be struck down with more debt than they can handle in student loans. More than this, the world of distance learning has become more of an option than it used to be. Now, with the handy tool of the internet, research is just a button press away, and tutors can be easily contacted via messaging services such as Skype or email.

High-quality research and education

Sites like JSTOR, Google Books and Google Scholar are fantastic wells of information, and are a world away from questionable sources such as Wikipedia. Indeed, the web has evolved so much that numerous students at brick-and-mortar universities probably use it more than their campus library.

In educational terms distance learning is on par with a university, and surpassing it in terms of convenience and cost. However, it’s important not to mistake an online degree for a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC).

For those of you not savvy to MOOCs, they are essentially free, unaccredited university modules that allow you to dip into certain courses and pick up an education along the way. Despite being created with the best of intentions, they can’t hold a candle to a university sanctioned distance learning degree, and you won’t complete a MOOC and gain any official qualification.
The main issue is whether or not you can afford college. As tuition fees rise and wages freeze, you might not be able to give your teen the campus lifestyle they desire. But you can still give them a top-quality education in a non-traditional way. Give distance learning a look to see what your options are.

Scholarship Friday: How to Find Scholarships Online


scholarships onlineThe full title of this book is Get a College Degree Without Drowning In Debt: How to Find Scholarships Online. This is NOT your average scholarship book. While many scholarship books list the names and details of the scholarships, this book takes a different approach by providing you with the search sites and ranking them. With so many scholarship search engines available this will save your college-bound teen valuable time and energy.

What makes How to Find Scholarships Online unique is:

  • The internal links that send you directly to the search sites.
  • The scholarship search engine ratings.
  • The extensive list of scholarship search engines.
  • The step-by-step guide on how to begin your search.
  • The list of online resources related to scholarships: blogs, podcasts and videos.
  • Demographic search links (i.e. military scholarships, minority scholarships, etc.)

Authors Gyan Devi and Myrriah Lavin explain their detailed reasoning behind spending time on scholarships with facts and figures, ending with this statement:

. . .  spending 450 hours applying for and winning scholarships takes substantially less time to pay off your student debt than the 2,940 hours at a part-time undergraduate job, or the 1,470 hours working full time after graduation. The choice is yours. Wouldn’t you rather work for 450 hours at a job where you set your own schedule and the better you are at your job, the more you’re paid?

Scholarship research and writing is a part-time job that pays you handsomely and allows you to work from home, in your jammies, on your own schedule. But, more importantly, it gives you financial freedom upon graduation to live debt-free and make decisions about your life that aren’t driven by monthly student loan payments for the next 20 years!

In a world of so much information and very little time to assimilate it, Gyan does all the leg work for you. She has followed these steps herself to pay for her own education and has proven her technique personally. The great thing about an ebook is that it provides you with an online copy, allowing you to go directly to the links provided.

Interested? If you are (and you should be) today is your lucky day! Gyan is providing my readers with a coupon code good until May 31st to download the book for FREE. That’s right: FREE. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain! Just follow the link below:

Get a College Degree Without Drowning in Debt: How to Find Scholarships Online

USE COUPON CODE: SL92E at checkout