James A. Boyle of College Parents of America writes:

How aware do you think students and parents are of tuition refund policies? College Parents of America recently began to offer tuition insurance and I hope to get a read on the perception of need.

The College Whisperer Responds:

Jim, clearly the need for tuition refund insurance is there. The knowledge regarding tuition refund polices? Not so much.

Not many parents I work with (and even fewer students) are aware of the tuition refund policies of the colleges to which the students apply, let alone tuition insurance options, where available.

Where tuition insurance programs are offered, they are certainly worth a look-see in terms of cost versus benefit.

New York University (NYU), for instance, with one of the highest tuition rates in the nation, offers just such a tuition refund insurance program. The cost is relatively low, and the peace of mind such insurance offers to students and parents alike, given that tuition refunds are ordinarily only offered, on a pro rated basis, for a short time after classes begin (typically a matter of weeks), could well be priceless.

At College Connection, we discuss tuition payment and reimbursement options with our students and their parents, together with the often more pressing concern of financing that sheepskin, and tuition insurance is an integral part of the conversation.

Glad to see that College Parents of America is not only offering a tuition insurance program, but is also engaged in concerted efforts to make the public aware of the existence of as well as the need for tuition insurance.

After all, you wouldn't book an expensive vacation without trip cancellation insurance, would you? Why take the chance that something may upend college plans, risking thousands of dollars in tuition?

While neither The College Whisperer nor College Connection endorse any particular tuition insurance plan, we do encourage students and their parents to check out them out. An ounce of prevention, as they say, is worth a pound of cure!

The views and opinions expressed in this blog are solely those of The College Whisperer.
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