19 February 2009 02:43 PM

College Costs Reinforce Need for College Preparation

by rbavaria

Today we have another guest blogger, Russell D. Greiff.  Rusty is a colleague whose dedication to the success of college- and university-bound teens is infectious.  Not a day goes by that he doesn’t have another idea for motivating, teaching, encouraging, and supporting these students as they begin preparing for their transition from high school to college or university.  He has lots of experience in the education field, from production to licensing, from Reading Rainbow TV to online and interactive services.  It gives me great pleasure to introduce to you our guest blogger for today – just in time for prepping for those SATs and ACTs – Rusty Greiff.


Global competition has made it more necessary than ever for students to attend college in order to obtain well-paying jobs. The release last week of a new public survey, by the groups Public Agenda and the National Center on Public Policy and Higher Education, highlights that an increasing number of Americans feel that obtaining a college degree is required to ensure a person’s success in today’s world. Fifty-five percent of respondents felt that completing college was a necessity for future work success. This is in contrast to the 31 percent of respondents who felt this way in 2000 and the 50 percent in 2007.


In response to the need for college planning assistance from families, I believe that the best defense is a strong offense in the college preparation process.


SAT* and ACT® scores continue to play an important role in an applicant’s ultimate college acceptance and his or her access to scholarships and grants.  Additionally, if students have the academic, study and organizational skills needed for college, they may save time and money by successfully transitioning into a university course load and not having to enroll in non-credited remedial classes during their freshman year.


According to The Project on Student Debt, students today are graduating college with an average level of education debt of approximately $21,000, and one in four students takes at least six years to graduate. Excelling in core academic programs and AP classes increases grant and scholarship opportunities, while preparing the student to graduate within four years.


An effective way to counter the dependence on loans is to prepare for college-level instruction by focusing on SAT and ACT success, as well as solidifying the foundation in advanced reading, writing and math concepts that is necessary for lifelong success.


A majority of Sylvan College Prep students increase their scores by an average of 160 to 200 points or more for the SAT and up to five points for the ACT. Despite increased competition, these students now have a better chance of obtaining college funding and acceptance into their top-choice schools. In fact, one student in our Bastrop, Texas, learning center increased his SAT score from 1400 to a perfect 2400, just a few weeks ago. This student’s chance for future success increases exponentially due to his significant achievement.


How can families prepare for college – while saving money?

Sylvan Learning is helping to soften the financial blow to parents through the launch of our ongoing national effort to help alleviate stress while preparing for college.


Students can participate in Sylvan-sponsored SAT and ACT practice tests held at their local high schools as fundraisers. Sylvan Learning’s College Prep professionals will then review and score the results and provide each student with an in-person improvement session.


Additionally, parents can attend free workshops, “Test Stress: A Parent’s Real Guide to College Test Prep,” dedicated to helping families develop high school action plans, college planners and the ability to navigate through the complicated college admissions process. Parents can contact their neighborhood Sylvan Learning center to find out when a seminar will be held in their area.


Begin preparing for college now.  Click here for free educational information– including stress-free tips for scoring higher on the SAT/ACT. 





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