My Top Eight College #Admissions, #Scholarships, and #FinancialAid Twitter Feeds

Social Media Feeds For College Admissions, Scholarships, and Financial AidI came to twitter in 2011, a bit late for the party to some. When I started blogging it was a godsend, with feeds full of great info on scholarships and financial aid. It took some time to sort out the good and the bad feeds, those that contributed and curated over those that simply posted their own material. However, when I finally got it all sorted, I found I had a preference for the feeds of just a handful of people. I want to share my personal list that I keep separate from other feeds that offer killer content, advice, and curated articles as well.

All of these resources are ones that parents of college bound teens should follow now and keep an eye out for as you go through the process of college admissions, and funding college.

Quick note, this list is in no particular order. They are all outstanding in their respective areas!


Lynn O’Shaughnessy is everywhere! She is a college columnist for, as well as her own great blog The College Solution, her content goes in-depth and talks straight to the issues facing parents and students in college aid and admissions.


Monica Matthews managed to help her son find over $100,000 in scholarships while he pursued his degree in Engineering. She hosts her own site at and her feed is full of great content. She has also published a book on her experiences, which is available on her site.



Jodi Okun took the initiative to get down to the Financial Aid office and learn the trade from the ground up. She has taken her experience and put it to work as a College Financial Planner. Her site, College Financial Advisors,  has some great content on understanding the financial aid process for parents. Jodi even hosts #CollegeCashChat  every Thursday at 10pm/EST. Parents and students can join the twitter chat and ask questions of Jodi and her guests.


Suzanne Shaffer has waded through the swamp that is college financial aid, scholarships, and admissions when she sent her won children to college. Her feed offers great info and insight into the college financing process with curated articles and her own content. Suzanne also offers her own free e-book and test prep guide via her site at 


Gyan Devi went back to school later in life as a non-traditional student. Gyan devoted herself to finding scholarship info for college students and their families. She believes students “should have the opportunity to graduate without mortgaging their future or majoring in student debt”. She has been counseling students and families as a financial aid coach for the past 14 years. Her feed offers a mix of curated and home-grown articles, and she has written two books with several more on the way.


Beatrice Schultz, CFP®, BSc, MSM founded Westface College Planning, as well as co-founder of Westface Financial and Insurance Services. She hosts College Smart Radio 1220am KDOW each week airing Saturdays from 3:00pm-3:30pm PST. Her feed is also a mix of curated and home-grown content via her site and blog, focusing often on the financial aspects of maximizing aid for families of college bound teens and the tax implications of college.



What I love about Sia Knight’s feed, is her no-nonsense articles that speak straight to the issues surround college admissions and the conduct of college bound teens. In an age where manners and social norms are evolving, she reminds parents and students how to conduct themselves when dealing with those working in education. Holding a Doctorate in Education, this former teacher, counselor and school administrator curates some content while focusing on her own articles on college prep, test prep, and building a students network before college. Her site can be found at


Keith Maderer is an author and public speaker on a range of topics. His feed offers some great content from his own site on college finance and the tax implications, as well as scholarships and financial aid. He also does some content curation on the subject as well. His articles can often be found on e-Zine, and they offer deep information on the various aspects of financial aid such as the FAFSA and the EFC.

One source of information for me will never be enough. However, these 8 sources of information are going to get any parent 95% of the information they are going to need to get their child into college, and get it paid for. Next week I’ll be posting my top ten list of favorite podcasts on financial aid and admissions.

Using a student’s own college resources to find scholarships | A Guest Post By Monica Matthews @aidscholarship

Monica Matthews @AidScholarship on GravtarThe following is a guest post by Monica Matthews (@AidScholarship).

A commonly overlooked place to find college scholarships is the college in which the student currently attends or is planning on attending after high school. Use these strategies to exhaust all scholarship avenues and find as much money as possible to help pay for college.

The College Website – This is the most common method of finding scholarships especially awarded to students of a certain college. Prospective or newly admitted students should look for “Future Students” or a similar heading and current students should look for scholarships for undergraduate or graduate students. It is important to note which scholarships need separate appliCheckout your departmental bulletin boards for college scholarshipscations and those that students are automatically considered for upon admittance to the school.

Departmental Bulletin Boards – Go to the building housing the department of the student’s major and read the bulletin boards
outside of classrooms and professors’ offices. Departmental scholarship information is often shared via posters and flyers in these locations. Save time by taking a picture of each poster, making sure information such as scholarship due date, qualifications, required materials, and application rules are clearly identified.




ProfessorsPersonal interaction with college professors can do more than help with good grades. Getting to know professors and taking advantage of their office hours is a way for them to get to know students on a deeper level. Ask professors if they know of any scholarships that students may apply for, letting them know how important the money is to the student’s education and ability to pay for school.

Talk to professors about scholarships they may know aboutCurrent and Former Students – Contact students who are currently attending the college and ask them what scholarships they received directly from the school. Also, reach out to students who have already graduated and ask them about their scholarships and see if they have any advice to share about helping pay for college costs.

Financial Aid Office – Admitted and current students should call the financial aid office directly, making sure to share their name and college ID number, and ask about all scholarship opportunities available to them. Prospective students can also do this, letting the college know how interested the student is in the school and their wish to find scholarship money to help pay for school.Talk to other students about scholarships

Admissions Office – Prospective and admitted students that have not yet started school should not overlook how helpful admissions officers can be in the college scholarship search. Students can call the admissions office, identify themselves, and share their desire to help pay for college with scholarship money.

The FAFSAThe Free Application for Federal Student Aid is the most important step in receiving scholarship and grant money for college. Many colleges award scholarships to students who have filed their FAFSA early, so don’t wait until right before the deadline to file. There is only so much free be sure to completely fill out your fafsa to get the maximum merit aid from the college you want to attendmoney to award and once it’s gone, it’s gone.

University Scholarship Competitions – Many colleges offer scholarship competitions for accepted students based on their high school grades, ACT/SAT scores, and achievements. Even if the student has not yet made a decision about attending that college, competing for a scholarship is a great way to win money that will increase the financial aid offered to that student. These competitions shouldn’t be overlooked, as many offer scholarship money to the majority of the participants, with the awards ranging from a few thousand dollars to a full scholarship.



There are thousands of college scholarships available to students and learning how to find and apply for them is a big step in the process. Tapping into a student’s own college is a great way to find scholarship opportunities with less competition than well-known national scholarships. If you have you won a scholarship from your college or have a tip for finding more scholarships from a student’s own college? Please share in the comments section below and let’s do whatever we can to help students find money to pay for the high cost of college.

Monica Matthews is the author of “How to Win College Scholarships“. She helped her own son win over $100,000 in college scholarships and now shares this passion with other parents and their students. Her scholarship tips have been featured on several websites and she has been dubbed the “Go To” expert on college scholarships. You can find her scholarship guide and tips at

Need-based college financial aid often based on ‘student’s academic merit’

Grades do matter people!

Cost of College

When some colleges award financial aid, ‘even “need-based” grants aren’t based solely on need: The size of the grants also depends on a student’s academic merit’.

While families do not usually know the details of how financial aid is disbursed, colleges have access to comprehensive, detailed information about applicants in what amounts to “a massive information imbalance”.

Most colleges offer “vague and superficial” disclosures about how they allocate their financial-aid dollars, said Mark Kantrowitz, a financial-aid expert with Edvisors, which publishes websites about paying for college. “They don’t give details about the actual formulas they use.”

Schools use “financial aid leveraging” to attract stronger students.

While universities don’t want to disclose the details, they have become increasingly strategic in recent years about how they use their aid and which students get it. Aid isn’t just given to students in need, it’s also used now for what schools call “financial aid leveraging” — often…

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‘Direct PLUS Loan made to a parent cannot be transferred to the child’

Keep in mind, once borrowed the debt is on the original borrower!

Cost of College

Don’t make the mistake of thinking a Direct PLUS Loan can be transferred from the parent to the child.

As a parent borrower, can I transfer my loan to my child?

No, a Direct PLUS Loan made to a parent cannot be transferred to the child. You, the parent, are responsible for repaying the loan.

Parents may be lulled into taking on excessive student debt, believing that this obligation can later be easily transferred to their children.  A verbal promise by a student to take over his parent’s debt after he graduates is easy to make at the beginning of the college experience.  But that promise can become hard to keep later on, especially when job prospects don’t pan out or when a student struggles to get his degree.

Parent PLUS loans are ”both remarkably easy to get and nearly impossible to get out from under“.  With good credit, a parent…

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COE Scholarship Competition Deadline is March 31!

Its always the Universities that offer the best scholarships: U Iowa is not exception.

Brain Force Development

The University of Iowa’s College of Engineering’s internal scholarship competition is accepting applications until March 31.

Have you applied yet? Find more information on the application requirements and eligibility at .

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5 Places To Search For Scholarships Locally | An Interview with Gyan Devi

Gyan Devi of | Author of How to Find Scholarship Opportunities Online
Gyan Devi, Author of How to Find Scholarship Opportunities Online

On this episode we discuss the importance of looking both online and LOCALLY in order to find the money their students need to pay for college. 

Our main guest today is Gyan Devi (pronounced Ghee-YAHN, rhymes with “neon”, and DAY-vee)

, the author of How to Find Scholarship Opportunities Online and Scholarship Opportunities for Women. Gyan also keeps a blog at  Gyan helps joins the show today to talk about those hidden gems out there in the scholarship world that aren’t as popular, but are very valuable when you know where to look.

Listen to the episode: [audio]



Cappex.comIn addition, we talk Chris Long of,  (@Cappex) sets us straight on being effective when searching online for scholarships. In addition, we answer a listeners question about their wish to attend their dream school, but its going to cost them about $134K.


Continue reading 5 Places To Search For Scholarships Locally | An Interview with Gyan Devi

Thermo Scientific Pierce Scholarship for the Life Sciences

STEM based #Scholarships

Brain Force Development

Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc., the world leader in serving science, is pleased to announce the continuation of the Thermo Scientific Pierce Scholarship Program to help provide educational opportunities for future generations of scientists. In addition to investing in the world’s future scientific endeavors, Thermo Fisher Scientific prides itself on our eco-friendly operations and products, along with working with customers, industry, and the scientific community to advance environmental management and science.

The Thermo Scientific Pierce Scholarship Program for the Fall 2014 semester includes two (2) $10,000 scholarships and four (4) $5,000 scholarships, to be awarded to undergraduate and graduate students with a declared major of biology, chemistry, biochemistry, or a related life-science field.

To qualify for the scholarship, students must have a GPA of 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale) and be enrolled in an accredited college for university for the Fall 2014 semester.

In addition to these qualifications, students must…

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