May is graduation season. Many recent high school grads excitedly await the start of their college career, while college grads look to their next venture in life. This is an excellent time to reflect on the value of a higher education. It has been estimated that with a college degree, an individual can make nearly $1 million more in a life time than someone without a one. Planning and saving for college is one of the most meaningful and important investments you can make for your child.
Nebraska's College Savings Program is one of the best in the country. And considering its affordability, flexibility, and multiple tax-savings advantages, it is certainly a smart and worthwhile investment. The program's goal is to allow Nebraska families to efficiently save for the future education expenses of their children.
The Nebraska State Treasurer's Office, along with the Omaha Royals sponsors an annual "Why I Want to Go to College" essay contest across the state and surrounding areas for 7th and 8th grade students. Our goal for this essay contest is to give younger students the opportunity to put real thought into attending college in their near future. We want them to see that their greatest asset in achieving many of their life goals is a higher education. Each year, I am blown away by the insight, maturity and aptitude these students show in regards to their own educations.
Delaney Green, our District 3 Third Place Winner from North Platte, spoke of the importance she sees, not only in attending college, but doing so in her home state of Nebraska. She also emphasized working hard and receiving scholarships, as the burden of paying for college is never easy.
Our District 1 Second Place Winner from Lincoln, Audrey Rich , has aspirations of being an elementary school teacher. She sees such a vital importance in education that after she completes her own, she wants to educate others.
Braxton Dreher, our District 2 First Place Winner from Omaha began his essay by stating that "If I plan to learn, I must learn to plan." A valuable point; planning for college should not be left until the last minute. The earlier the planning begins, the more prepared and equipped a family will be to face the many expenses that come along with attending a college or university.
Nebraska families recognize the importance of a college education for their children. By efficiently planning in advance, we prepare them for success and ensure for them a level of security in a constantly changing world. Nebraska's College Savings Plan Program is a simple and affordable way to start the process. We aim to make higher education a reality for Nebraska's students.
For more information about Nebraska's College Savings Plan, visit treasurer.org.