September is National College Savings Month |

September is National College Savings Month

Special to the LVN

By keeping in line with National College Savings Month, the state treasurer’s office has worked with the Nevada College Savings Plan program manager to lower the required minimum amount to open an SSgA Upromise 529 college savings plan account from $250 to a mere $15, one of the lowest in the nation, announced Treasurer Kate Marshall.

“This is a tremendous plus for many Nevada low-to-middle income families who have struggled mightily over the past several years to plan ahead for their children’s higher education expenses while our economy continues to rebound,” Marshall said. “President Obama recently stated that making higher education more affordable is one of his top priorities. I am proud to say that Nevada is doing its part to provide Silver State families with a greater opportunity to make the dream of a college education a reality for their children.”

Marshall said professional studies have determined that children who know they have a college savings account in their name are seven times more likely to attend an institution of higher learning.

“It’s important to note that the studies observed that the conclusions applied regardless of family income, ethnicity, or the educational attainment of the child’s parents,” she added.

According to Marshall, college debt has now surpassed credit card debt as the largest financial liability for American families. In fact, she said the average college debt per college graduate is more than $23,000. Further, the average cost at a public four-year university has grown by more than 250 percent, while typical family income has risen only 1 percent.