“My oldest one wanted to go…was looking at a couple of the state schools in neighboring states, was gonna get a significant merit package, was all set to go. And then at the last minute she veered off and said, “Hey, I want to look at a couple of the Ivy Leagues.” And lo and behold, we decided that Cornell was the best fit for her academically, socially, and we applied there.
From going through that, I realized the whole process of how colleges look at students and their families and their abilities to pay, and how possibly you can leverage that knowledge into positioning yourself so that you can look artificially worse than you are, and maybe qualify for some of that need-based aid. So I started to incorporate some of those tactics when planning for my clients so they started to have some significant results.”
– Mike Velasco On College Financial Planning
Sending children to college is one of the largest savings challenges most advisor’s clients face, and there are multiple ways to approach it from a planning standpoint, including 529 funds, special accounts, loans and financial aid. Mike Velasco has taken the last option and made a busy and growing practice, finding strategies and tactics to help clients work through the financial aid system effectively, finding ways for students to qualify for more or different types of financial aid, and saving parents thousands of dollars in the process. If you have clients with high school age children, you don’t want to miss this high impact half hour!
Mike Velasco is the founder of Red Oak College Planning and has over 30 years’ experience in the financial services industry. His firm is affiliated with College Planning Network, and together they’ve helped hundreds of parents successfully navigate college admissions and financial aid process so they can comfortably afford to send their children to college regardless of cost.
CPN is the nation’s largest and most reputable college admissions and financial aid servicing center. It has averaged nearly $19,000 a year in college aid for the average family. After a nearly 20-year career on Wall Street, Mike started his own financial planning firm, Red Oak Capital, where he has helped numerous families in the areas of retirement planning, college financial planning, and estate income protection. Prior to his Wall Street career, Mike spent six years with a large CPA firm as a manager of their financial services group where he obtained his CPA certification and gained valuable experience in the financial services world.
Mike graduated with a degree in public accountancy with honors from the Lubin School of Business at Pace University. He’s also a frequent speaker on college financial planning at local New Jersey libraries, church groups, and community centers. He’s a noted lecturer for many of the New Jersey County Bar Association meetings and is considered one of the leading college financial aid speakers on the topic of divorce and its impact on college financial aid planning.