Why 95% of Families Fail at College Planning

Lotta Class of 2019 Seniors on edge this week, waiting (by checking 28x per day) for Early Decision notices to come out.

It’s a big deal to find out where you’e headed to college. I certainly don’t begrudge anyone for setting a goal and going after it, you-know-whats-to-the-wall. I was one of those kids too, back in high school.

But here’s the problem:  it’s completely, utterly the wrong thing to focus on.

Most families place 120% of their thoughts, dreams and efforts onto this artificial four year (hopefully!) sliver of a young adult’s life.

That’s the equivalent of focusing solely on getting to the airport on time…

…NOT where the plane is headed!

Each year, we hear about soooooo many kids who got into their “Dream Schools,” then, days or weeks after matriculating, realize they made the wrong choice, or decide that they’re miserable.

Then, a large percentage (up to 30%, according to The New York Times) come home with their tail between their legs, no mojo and the elation of getting in only in a distant memory.

Here’s another shocking statistic:  80% of kids change majors.

That’s no problem if you’re shifting from Econ to Poli Sci, for instance.

But if you’re dumping Engineering in favor of Philosophy, you could be setting yourself up for an extra year or two to make up credits (at $70K a pop, per year)…

…and a job using your degree to deliver food or sell sneakers at the mall after you graduate.

Last week, Pearl and I did a presentation where we discussed how to prevent this.

We outlined our “P4 System”  – Plan, Path, Position & Produce – which was the first time we ever did this in a group setting.

Our intended audience was 11th grade families considering retaining a college advisory firm to help them navigate the college list building, admissions and financial aid/scholarships process. If that describes you, I have good news.

We got our tech guy to record it at the last minute.  He posted it here:

The P4 Approach Webinar 

We’re going to keep it live on this page for the week, because we received a bunch of emails from people who couldn’t attend.

Please pass this along to any parent of an 11th grader, or younger, who’s in the thick of it.


Andy “P4 and After” Lockwood

P.S.  On the presentation, I mentioned that we were looking to take on 12 new Class of 2020 clients this enrollment period.  We received a bunch of applications that night, so now that number is going to be closer to five.  If you’re interested in working with us, an application and interview is mandatory so that we can EACH make sure we’re a good fit for another.

And let me be frank: our college advising program for rising seniors isn’t cheap or cut rate.  We’re definitely not right for anyone who does not understand the concept of “Return on Investment.”

If you’re interested, here’s where to go.


Leave a Comment