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Maura Kastberg
Maura Kastberg is the Executive Director of Student Services at RSC Your College Prep Expert. Over a 15-year career, she has prepared thousands of junior-high and high-school students for college. Her advice appears regularly in numerous print, online and radio outlets.

Entries by Maura Kastberg

What's Important When Selecting Which Colleges to Apply to?

(0) Comments | Posted May 1, 2014 | 1:07 PM

For junior students it's time to get serious about which colleges you'll apply to next fall. But what are the important things to consider as you make your selections? For the most part, that will depend on who you are. But, there are some things you should take note of...

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Review Your Offer of Financial Aid With an Eye On Your Future

(0) Comments | Posted April 1, 2014 | 10:54 AM

Last month, I talked about the financial aid policies at different colleges and how those policies affect your financial aid. This month, let's look at the actual offer itself. There are a few things to keep in mind as you look at financial aid offers; you need to know what's...

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How College Financial Aid Policies Affect Your Offer

(0) Comments | Posted March 3, 2014 | 7:18 PM

In only two short months students all across the United States will be selecting which colleges they will be attending next fall. It's exciting and all the work and worry will be over. Before you breathe that sigh of relief, there is one remaining hurdle to clear, the offer of...

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Don't Forget to Update Your Student Aid Report (SAR)

(0) Comments | Posted February 3, 2014 | 12:26 PM

If you filed your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) last month you should receive your Student Aid Report (SAR) this month. The SAR contains the information you submitted on the FAFSA and is the document that will go out to the colleges you listed on your FAFSA.

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What You Need to Know About Filing the FAFSA

(1) Comments | Posted January 6, 2014 | 4:42 PM

Happy New Year! It's that time of year again when families that have a child starting college this coming fall need to complete their Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Don't make the mistake of assuming you earn too much or won't be eligible for anything. College is expensive...

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What Do Colleges Look For In Applicants?

(1) Comments | Posted December 2, 2013 | 4:02 PM

There are many factors that go into admissions decisions and there is no magic formula to ensure you will be admitted into a particular college. However, most colleges do use some similar criteria as they select their incoming freshman class.

Students should find out the entrance requirements for any...

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Application Ethics

(1) Comments | Posted November 11, 2013 | 8:48 AM

Thanksgiving will be here before we know it. I am thankful for everyone that reads my blog -- you are appreciated! For most seniors in high school this time of year is all about getting their applications together and completing them. So it seems like a good time to talk...

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Deciding How to Apply

(0) Comments | Posted October 3, 2013 | 12:45 PM

The applications process is a complex one. Different colleges have different kinds of admission policies, open admission, selective admission and competitive admission. Then you need to decide if you should apply as an early action or early decision candidate.

First, let's look the different types of admission policies and what...

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How Many Colleges Should Students Apply to?

(2) Comments | Posted September 4, 2013 | 2:18 PM

There may be 20 colleges you want to attend, or you could have your heart set on just one. When you are applying to college be practical. Most students should apply to somewhere between 5-7 colleges. There are no guarantees that you will be accepted to the school you desire,...

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4 Ways Parents Can Improve Their Child's Education

(0) Comments | Posted August 9, 2013 | 12:26 PM

There's a tricky balance involved in raising children: encouraging them to do the right thing without laying it on too thick while discouraging them from doing the wrong thing without making it sound appealing. Raising a child to value education, particularly a teenager looking for a little excitement, poses the...

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Doing Something for Nothing

(0) Comments | Posted July 2, 2013 | 4:45 PM

Finally, summer is here! How do you plan on spending your summer? Did you know that more than 50 percent of all Americans ages 14 through 24 have participated in some form of volunteer activity? Every day, youth volunteers donate valuable assistance to churches and other religious organizations, hospitals, nursing...

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How to Decide When You're Undecided

(4) Comments | Posted April 24, 2013 | 5:01 PM

It's almost decision time. Most colleges will require students to make their final decisions on which college they will attend by May 1st. I live in an area that is blessed with many college options and you know decision time is near because you see signs for admitted student's day...

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Wait! You've Been Waitlisted!

(0) Comments | Posted February 21, 2013 | 4:40 PM

I live in the Northeast and most of the time I really love it. My favorite season is fall. The whole world becomes a kaleidoscope of color overnight. And there's nothing that makes you appreciate the summer weather like six months of freezing temperatures and blowing snow. But this time...

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No Plans for the Break? Visit Colleges

(0) Comments | Posted February 1, 2013 | 2:01 PM

February is almost here and most high schools have a break coming up in February. This break is a great time for juniors to begin the process of narrowing down their college choices by visiting the colleges they are considering.

Most colleges offer virtual campus tours and visiting colleges...

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Five Things to Keep in Mind as You File For Financial Aid

(0) Comments | Posted January 2, 2013 | 10:10 AM

The New Year is a time for reflection, introspection, and resolutions. One resolution you should make if you are a high school senior or the parent of one is to get your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) submitted before the end of this month.

I know, the form...

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Organizing the College Application Process

(1) Comments | Posted December 4, 2012 | 10:00 AM

All the dates we have to remember in life can get overwhelming. I come from a big Irish Catholic family and I have five sisters and one brother. Remembering their birthdays, and their children's and spouses birthdays is nearly impossible if it weren't for my old-fashioned paper calendar. As I...

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Here's a 'Surprise' Tuition Is Set to Increase

(2) Comments | Posted November 3, 2012 | 6:51 PM

This month we have seen some slightly good news on the economic front. The unemployment figures have dropped a little and the GDP is up 2 percent, which is more than was expected. Things look to be improving slightly. But then the other shoe drops and the College Board releases...

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Government Can Help, But Not Much...

(1) Comments | Posted October 17, 2012 | 6:45 PM

There's a lot of talk right now about student loans. Romney is in favor of reverting student loans back to the banks with the government getting out of the student loan business other than guaranteeing the loans. When Obama took student loans away from the private lenders it actually reduced...

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College Debt How Much Is Too Much?

(3) Comments | Posted October 2, 2012 | 10:17 AM

Its fall and that means senior students are busily putting together the list of colleges they will apply to. I can see them toiling away at their computers putting the finishing touches on their admissions essays. This is the time of year I begin thinking about how I can improve...

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Who's Responsible in the Chicago Teacher Strike?

(3) Comments | Posted September 17, 2012 | 3:29 PM

This week in Chicago, 350,000 public school students stayed at home because their teachers were striking. The 50,000 students in Chicago that attend charter schools returned to school on time. The mayor of Chicago wants to expand charter schools. The public school teachers aren't happy about it.


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