GRAND Magazine - May/June 2019 - 31

ask dr. gramma karen

How grandparents can help their college-bound grandchildren
BY KAREN L. RANCOURT

T

his is not an article about the college
admissions scandal. You're welcome.
Rather, this is about how grandparents can help their college-bound grandchildren. When this topic of helping is
raised, providing financial help with tuition
often first comes to mind. There are many
resources available for grandparents with
this intent. For example, in addition to consulting with their own financial planners,
there are innumerable online resources for
grandparents who want to help with tuition.

" "
...the adult parents have
the final say on whether
grandparents can help...

items. This other list of 110 items focuses on
items needed for the first year, if living on
campus.
* Take the grandchildren shopping and/
or help them with online shopping for items
they know they'll need.
* Assist with the purchase or lease of
a car, if they will be commuting. Everyone
wants the piece of mind that the young adult
heading off to college will be driving a safe
vehicle.
* Offer to make introductions to friends
and colleagues who might be able to be a
resource. For example, alumni who can talk
about their experiences at a particular college or assist with appropriate introductions
or write letters of recommendation.

During the college experience, grandparents
* Help college-bound grandchildren locate and
pay for online or classroom or phone or one-on- can offer to:
Helping with tuition costs is all well and good, but one tutoring for SAT and/or ACT courses (college
* Be an available resource to provide any items
many grandparents are not in a position to help in
the grandchild forgot or didn't realize he/she
admissions tests).
this way. The good news is that they can help their
would need, e.g., a printer to save time running back
* Be a chauffeur or travel companion: go with
college-bound grandchildren throughout their coland forth to the library, a shower caddy.
the grandchildren to check out colleges of interest
lege experiences in ways that do not involve huge
and/or those recommended by their guidance councash outlays.
selors. There may be times the grandchildren's parBefore I list some suggestions, I want to emphaClick here to continue reading
ents are not able to visit all the colleges of interest,
size that grandparents can offer to help color they are not able to make repeat visits to colleges
lege-bound grandchildren, but the adult parents
being seriously considered.
have the final say on whether grandparents can help,
* Give frequent-flyer miles and hotel points
and in what ways. Some of my suggestions will resto help parents with expenses to visit colleges that
Karen L. Rancourt, Ph.D., writes
onate with my readers, while other suggestions may require travel.
an advice column for parents and
not feel practical, depending on financial circum* Help prepare and follow through on various
grandparents at Mommybites.com.
stances and the relationships involved.
checklists that help college-bound kids get ready for
Her most recent book is, It's All
About Relationships: New Ways to
college. Many working parents will appreciate grandBefore the college experience, grandparents
Make Them Healthy and Fulfilling,
parents' help, as itemized lists can be quite lengthy.
at Home and at Work.
can offer to:
For example, this one checklist contains 35 actions

31 GRAND

MAY JUNE 2019

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GRAND Magazine - May/June 2019

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