The primary concern of a parent is to feed, clothe, and shelter their children. But with the cost of tuition rising higher and financing options dropping faster than a bill collector’s patience, parents are learning they’re going to have to be a little savvier with their financial planning if they don’t want to be overburden with funding their child’s education.

For those relatives who have been fortunate enough to start college funds for their loved ones, they’ve seen their smart decision annihilated by economic instability. 

After reading my piece on my own struggles with student loans, Kayla, a high school senior, sent me detailing how a flat stock market has put a dent in her post-high school plans.

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I read your article, and as a struggling high school senior aspiring to be a writer, I feel like I'll be lost in your situation soon enough.

My great-grandmother had set up a college fund for my brother and me and, in short, when the stock market crashed so did my $100,000. I've searched all over for scholarships, but the ones I really need to depend on (the FASFA) are passing me by. 

I have to move out of my house just to be able to apply for government aid at the school I want to go to, and I fear I won't be able to get to college by this point. I'm the first to go to college in my household (in Texas, even) as well, and I'm really scared for the rest of my life.

My parents messed up their credit so badly, I can't get bank loans. I pretty much have to get kicked out to get any money.

Times are really rough right now, and I'm glad I'm not the only one struggling. I want to be an author, but at this point it looks like I have to choose another career just to get by.

Your story really touched me, and I hope that things get better for you. Thank you for listening--well, reading. 

Sincerely,

Kayla

This makes me want to drop kick every member of the last administration and each of the greedy dimwitted execs on Wall Street who helped usher this era in. 

For parents that have set up college funds for their kids, have you placed those funds in safer money market funds or has the damage already been done?

For college students currently feeling the financial crunch, have you found yourself with less aid and if so, how are you covering tuition?