MassMutual’s College Planning

Lawndale News Chicago's Bilingual Newspaper - Education

It’s not surprising that four out of five families in the U.S. see a college degree as the key for a child to open the doors of opportunity, establish a career, and achieve financial security. It’s also not surprising that most are concerned about affordability and are opposed to their children taking on student loan debt. But the general similarities may stop there according to new research from Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (MassMutual). The study provides a deeper understanding of the importance placed on education and how ethnicity affects family decisions and financial behavior. Through a deep dive quantitatively via a national survey and qualitatively via a series of focus groups in various communities across the U.S., one of the most interesting revelations surfaced:

Lawndale News Chicago's Bilingual Newspaper - Education

  • Latinos see college as a means to a professional career and financial security. Latino parents are against children taking on student loans and debt, and interestingly, starting at a less expensive 2-year college was a more frequently considered option to help manage the cost of a higher education.

The findings of this research study come on the heels of MassMutual’s launch of its newly refreshed brand, which was designed to better reflect and build on the legacy and the core values that have guided the company since its founding. The new brand recognizes that while the world celebrates independence, true happiness comes from interdependence and our reliance on one another. Based on the research study’s insights, MassMutual advises families to honestly answer a few tough questions to help plan for a child’s education:

  1. Have you truly examined your financial situation and identified the priorities?
  2. What are your family’s goals for higher education?
  3. Without sacrificing retirement savings and other priorities, how much would you like to contribute to each of your children’s savings funds?
  4. Have you included your child in the college saving and funding discussion?
  5. Is your current strategy aligned with your answers to the above questions?

It goes without saying that families today are making trade-offs to help fund a college education, and are allocating their available funds in various ways, but to varying degrees according to the research study. There are tools available to help figure out how much you need to save each month that align with your goals, such as the MassMutual college savings calculator.

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