In this episode, Dr. Michael Brown joins the show to talk about how to make college affordable. From the simplest stay-at-home option to more expensive out-of-state options, we explore several models that put a good education within reach of virtually any student – regardless of prior financial planning – without the need for money from Mom and Dad, and without taking on excessive student debt.
[01:22] Who is Dr. Michael Brown?
[02:42] College as an investment
[03:58] Choosing a field vs a college
[04:37] “What do you think is a reasonable amount of debt to carry?”
[05:21] Debt free education alternative to military service
[05:45] What’s required to graduate
[06:05] Transfer credits
[06:15] Option 1: Getting college credit before leaving high school
[06:27] A few inexpensive options online (see resources below)
[07:38] Based on your experience teaching online courses, how does that system work?
[10:54] Quality of online courses
[11:47] Augmenting traditional school with online courses to save money
[12:41] What about those kids who are not ready to take college-level courses in high school?
[13:25] Leaving high school with zero credits and accruing no debt
[13:47] Option 2: leaving high school with zero credits, no money from parents, no Pell grants, no scholarships, and start from scratch – the 100% self-sufficient option. Starting in Junior year.
[14:34] Reducing the cost of textbooks (see resources below)
[16:13] Financial planning (start as early as possible)
[17:49] Starting from zero in your junior year. Community college + an exit plan
[19:52] What about the quality of community schools?
[22:05] How to get that 120 credit hour degree without a scholarship or money from home – the $26,000 degree
[22:43] Special Grants
[24:04] Option 3: How to earn a degree an be able to live on campus – the $45,000 degree
[26:26] Option 4: How to earn a degree even if a student wants to leave the state? – the $52,000 degree
[26:53] The Southern Regional Education Board and The Academic Marketplace
[32:16] Option 5: Taking advantage of inefficient education markets to negotiate a good price
[35:01] Watch out for “the research school” trap for undergraduate degrees
[37:00] How about athletic scholarships? Can I use those to get through college?
[45:00] Find “a day in the life” videos on Youtube
[48:00] Dr. Brown’s Final thoughts – profit vs vs not-for-profit colleges
Resources Mentioned in this Episode
- “The Alternative Credit Project™: Degree Completion Planning.” The Alternative Credit Project™: Degree Completion Planning | ACE® Alternative Credit Project™, www.alternativecreditproject.com/.
- “Online Courses From Top Universities. Join for Free.” Coursera, www.coursera.org/.
- Inexpensive book option 1: Larson, Ron, and Bruce H. Edwards. Calculus of a single variable. Brooks Cole, Cengage Learning, 2014.
- Inexpensive book option 2: “We make going back to school easier.” Cheap Textbooks Online NEW and USED | Buy, Rent or Sell, www.textbookrush.com/.
- Inexpensive book option 3: “Chegg.com.” Textbook Rental | Rent Textbooks from Chegg.Com, www.chegg.com/textbooks/.
- Inexpensive book option 4: Edwards, Bruce H., and Ron Larson. “Calculus.” Rent or Buy Cheap Textbooks, Cengage Learning, 1 Jan. 1970, www.valorebooks.com/textbooks/calculus-10th-edition/9781285057095.
- inexpensive book option 5: “Find used books, rare books, textbooks, new and out-of-print books Compare book prices, including shipping, from over 100,000 booksellers worldwide.” BookFinder.com: New & Used Books, Rare Books, Textbooks, Out of Print Books, www.bookfinder.com/.
- “Southern Regional Education Board.” Southern Regional Education Board, www.sreb.org/.
- Tucker, Janine, and Maryalice Yakutchik. Women’s lacrosse: a guide for advanced players and coaches. Johns Hopkins University Press, in association with U.S. Lacrosse, 2014.
- Rpowell. “Estimated probability of competing in professional athletics.” NCAA.org – The Official Site of the NCAA, 13 Mar. 2017, www.ncaa.org/about/resources/research/estimated-probability-competing-professional-athletics.
- You can find out more about Dr. Brown on his Website at: http://www.michaelscottbrown.info/