Selecting a College

We just received the college financial analysis from our college planning folks. Their two “cheapest” colleges were:

  • Occidental. CPA has the cost of attendance as $58,432, but the college claims it as $60,633. The college is offering $15,500 in grants and scholarships, $12,500 in an Occidental “no interest” loan, and $5,500 in a Federal unsubsidized loan, bringing the costs for the parents supposedly to around $24,900 (perhaps a bit more). But note that a large portion of this is loans.
  • UC Berkeley. They aren’t offering anything. They have an estimated cost of $31,868 per year, and “offer” that same $5,500 in student unsubsidized loans, leaving the parents with $26,336.

In other words, the parents costs for both are about the same; in fact, Oxy is more expensive for the parents if you use their total estimated expense number of $60,633. Plus, Oxy would leave Erin (a) saddled with more loans, for (b) attending a less prestigious institution. I think the decision is clear; she’s going to Cal.

To that end… this weekend is a roadtrip to Berkeley. If any of my friends reading this could offer some crash space for short naps in Oakland or Berkeley, please contact me.