By Dorothy York, President and CEO of North American Precis Syndicate (NAPS)
The health crisis, due to COVID19, has taken a toll on the young adults who are working hard to advance their academic careers. College admissions tests like the SAT have been cancelled and some schools are waiving the requirement for applicants to include the scores of those tests. Some schools are postponing graduation ceremonies until the fall. Some schools may not open until 2021. With all the changes that are taking place, students and their families are working to navigate the troubled waters of the college process.
Many are struggling to make ends meet due to layoffs, furloughs, decline in business and other economic hardships due to the global pandemic. The good news is that many organizations have devoted their resources for education or are offering helpful advice and guidance for students and parents, to help them make the best decisions about academic choices. If you have a way to help, tell your story to the millions of Americans who would like to know.
To help our clients choose formats that are getting the best results, North American Precis Syndicate ranks the top feature news stories of the year by the highest number of placements in media outlets nationwide. We have compiled the results to show the top feature news stories of the decade, those that have performed brilliantly, way above and beyond what is typically expected.
The most successful stories included attractive color photos or infographics, helpful advice from experts, celebrity spokespeople, the latest statistics, results from surveys, trends, time-saving tips, money saving ideas and other helpful information. The stories targeted people across various demographic groups and related to safe, enjoyable and prosperous experiences, protecting the health, and assets, of the readers, their friends and family members.
We are passionate about working on the kinds of stories that help millions of people nationwide with the news that is potentially life saving or can improve the quality of their lives. To name a few, here are examples of the top educational stories of the decade related to college financing ideas. These are from some of the best and brightest communications professionals for some of the most demanding management teams at leading organizations:
1- College Board: “Scholarships Available: Six Steps To Help Students Get Into And Pay For College”
Readers were informed that getting into college can seem complicated and overwhelming but help is available and to support students, and families, The College Board, the creator of the SAT and Advanced Placement, launched the first-of-its-kind national scholarship program. College Board announced it would be investing $25 million over five years, starting in 2020.
2- Scholarship America: “Meeting The High Cost Of Higher Education”
For students or someone readers care about, is or hopes to be a college student soon, compelling stats were offered to create an awareness of the $1.56 trillion in total student loan debt in the U. S. Readers were alerted about organizations that offer scholarships and tips were offered from the Department of Education for sources of information about scholarships.
3- Junior Achievement: “College Corner: Making Informed Choices About Student Debt”
For the millions of students pursuing a college degree, in the hopes that it leads to a successful career and a meaningful life, information was provided about how to pay for college, including student loans, from the world’s leading nonprofit economic educational organization. A free guide was offered that parents and teens can use to gain a better understanding of making the right choices when it comes to student loans.
4- Quicken: “College Corner: Study Shows College Kids Hide Debt From Parents”
For college freshmen looking to manage their own finances — often for the first time — results of a survey and tips were offered to “avoid the financial freshmen 15”.
5- Dell: “Education/ Scholarships Awarded To Determined Students”
Information was given about the Dell Scholarship Program which provides 300 scholarships annually, and had awarded over $60 million in scholarships.
6- Ad Council/HSF: “College Planning/ Helping Hispanic Students Prepare For College”
Readers were alerted about a new PSA campaign to help Hispanic parents and their children to prepare, plan and pay for college. Stats were offered, including that 69% of Hispanic students were going directly to college, a rate that was higher than that of the general population.
7- Hughes Network Systems/4H: 4-H Youth In Action Award Recognizes Teen Who Inspires Others To Engage In STEM”
To help adults to inspire American youth to explore STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math), readers were alerted about the Youth In Action STEM Pillar Award, sponsored by HughesNet, engaging more than 6,000 youths in STEM subject through demonstrations, workshops, talks and interviews.
While the value of an education may be priceless, readers were given tips to help with the challenge of paying for college. The company expert was quoted about long term savings goals that the key is to start early and save regularly.
9- Colorado Technical University/ Wounded Warrior Scholarships: “Education News & Notes/ Wounded Veterans And Supporters Get Helping Hand For College”
Readers were informed about results of a survey, that while veterans are the most sought-after college students, many can’t afford to go to college and don’t know what scholarships are available to them. Tips were offered for how to apply and the selection process.
10- TD Ameritrade: “College Savings Trends/ Angst Over Rising College Costs Turns Teens Into Bigger Savers Than Their Parents”
Results of a survey were revealed, indicating GenXers and GenYers tended to save more than their parents did. An expert from the bank was quoted and tips were offered, including an online “College Planning” tool to help families estimate how much they’ll need to save.
11- Sallie Mae: “College Loans/ Expert Advice On Student Loan Repayment”
Tips were offered from expert to help soon to be college graduates to pay off their debts.
12- Upromise: “College Planning/ Tips On Managing Your Student Loans”
As many families dig deeper to invest in what they value most, a college degree, practical steps were offered to help reduce costs associated with college and survey results were revealed.
13- TaxACT: “College Planning/ Put A Dent In Your College Bills With These Federal Tax Breaks”
Readers were alerted about The American Opportunity And Lifetime Learning Credit, which were likely to result in big tax rewards.
14- Wells Fargo: “Understanding Financial Aid Award Letters: Compare Costs”
Readers were advised that when comparing college costs, what steps to take, including one of the first steps should be for students to fill out the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid
15- Bankrate: “Money Management/ Student Loan Repayments Come Knocking — Answer The Door”
This by-lined article by a company expert advised readers about student loan repayments and how those affect credit scores. He emphasized the importance of putting together a spending plan.
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