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distancia

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About distancia

  • Birthday 03/09/1961

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  • Biography
    newbie to homeschooling teen ,17
  • Location
    somewhere nice
  • Interests
    travel wildlife language art
  • Occupation
    jackie-of-all-trades, investment analyst and day-trader
  1. OP here: We put money into a "pre-paid" 529 Plan when dd was just a toddler, and now she is in school the money for tuition is coming from her pre-paid plan. What remains are 3 merit scholarships: one from the state, two from the school. Fees are taken from those 3 scholarships, as are books, but there is still a lot left over. I did call the FA office and the rep there told me merit scholarships cannot be taken away. So, the excess is just sitting in dd's account at the college business office. I guess dd just goes into the business office and requests a disbursement? Ironic: all the bills comes to us, but the credits are in dd's name. BTW, there is a school here in our state that was offering full tuition and housing as well as a brand new laptop to Natl Merit Scholars, regardless of need. Add to that any other merit scholarships and a paid for 529 plan and the student could be doing quite well! When they say it "pays" to do well in high school, they mean it.
  2. A rare thing, indeed--our DD's FA and scholarships exceed the cost of college attendance this semester. She's showing a credit balance of over $1,000 on her account. Is this refunded to the student at the end of the semester (would be nice, as we advanced money for one of dd's off-campus bud educationally-related activities, and she needs to reimburse us), or does the money just go back to the college 'coffers" if unused? Because if so, we'll make darn sure the money gets spent at the college bookstore on a new laptop, as dd's present unit is on the blink.
  3. Hi regentrude (and others). I need to correct a few facts: --DD does not live at home. She is at a college in her hometown. --She likes some facets of the academic environment. But there are some facets which are too open-ended for her, and a lot of time spent on theory vs. application. --This school has a particular emphasis and specialty, but it doesn't have the resources to support a good department in DD's major. --She has made a few good friends, but unfortunately they have since acquired boyfriends, are spending "all" their time with boyfriends [for both girls this is their first experience in a steady relationship], so those nights of sitting around watching chick flicks and painting toenails are no more. --I agree, DD needs to come to a conclusion for herself. She likes to go out and about to art galleries, festivals, etc in town and if she can't find other studetns who want to do those things (and most don't seem to) then she either has to go it alone or go somewhere with a more active student body. --You're right, I can't fix it and DD doesn't want me to, she just wants someone to listen to her.
  4. I'm teary-eyed and overwhelmed as I write this. DD has been trying so, SO hard to make it at the small college she is now attending. She insists she is going to stay at this school and get a great education, while she valiantly trudges forward in her attempt to enjoy "the college experience". She is as smart as the other students, but cut from a different cloth, and she knows it. It's a mismatch. She dresses differently, looks differently, thinks differently, likes different music, has a different demeanor, etc etc. At first DD did make 2 close friends but both now have boyfriends and they are enmeshed in coupledom. Now dd is alone. She has gone to different campus activities to meet others, but nothing pans out. When we look at what our DD is getting out of this, we're not sure the great education is worth the trade-offs, which I've posted elsewhere. We know that this is DD's choice--after all, she earned the scholarships--but her decision is affecting us, primarily me, mom. I am getting 'phone calls 4 or 5 times a day. I know dd is very lonely. She goes out a lot around town [it's her hometown area, and she loves it, and it has some phenomenal attractions that you can't find elsewhere] so she's comfortable being out and about, but she is tired of doing it alone. She has asked other students to go with her, out for ice cream or a walk downtown, but they prefer the insularity of campus, the "bubble" they call it. DD was hoping to meet a few kindred spirits, but it isn't happening. She is vibrant and personable and can talk to 20- and 30- somethings about practically any topic (her last boyfriend was 26, and the dance troupe with whom she dances professionally are all in the age 30-40 bracket), but with her peers at this school, nada. But, DD says she is not going to transfer to an inferior school because it's all about education. I cannot dissuade her in any way. Tonight I told hubby that I cannot continue doing this, being DDs support system and only friend, simply because she has chosen to be at this school. Her best friend is at a state school 90 miles away, and DD could transfer there, but she won't, it's a big nothing U. Other friends are at other mainstream Us throughout the state. Therefore, it's me, mom, who is asked to go out and meet for lunch or shopping, to give advice, to discuss career options, etc. The calls go on for 30 or 45 minutes at a time, several times a day. I am bearing the brunt of this. I did tell DD that dad and I are intending to travel and she will have to develop a network among her college cronies. She hears me, but the reality is, it's not happening. I cringe to think that I will have to be in this same situation next year...and the year after next...and then DD will finally leave school, and be as alone as when she first went started. What can I do? Certainly not what I am doing now. And what can I say to DD that won't make her feel terrible about her situation? She will retort--rightly so--"there's no guarantee that it will be different for me elsewhere" or "you should be glad my number one priority is a good education."
  5. We bought a double Honeywell HEPA air filter which covers up to 390 sq feet (her room is merely 102 sq ft); we caulked a thick piece of plastic over the air vent; we contacted Maintenance and had them come in--dd says they sprayed something in the central air vent (maybe a germicidal?) and changed the filter in the compressor. All of these actions reduced about 30% of the irritants, but not enough throughout the entire suite, which includes shared living space. I did contact FA today and they suggested dd talk to housing and see if she can find availability in one of the newer building which don't have these mold and mildew issues. If she can't find it this semester, then she can request it next fall. Which brings me to another, separate topic: how long do we parents watch dd "stick it out"? Her decisions are affecting us, too.
  6. Thanks, about the COA information. Hubby and I looked over the FA documents tonight and realized that it will be CHEAPER for dd to live on campus than to commute: the college is offering significant FA for her room/board/food, but zero $ in FA if she commutes--in fact, with gas and additional auto upkeep it will cost us about $2600 more for her to live at home! Unbelievable. So now we are stuck: do we tell dd she must live on campus (and continue to have allergy/asthma problems) or she can continue to commute, while we subsidize a room in a private residence where she can get off-campus to study, nap, and occasionally sleep instead of driving home late at night? We're calling the FA office tomorrow. Hope they talk to us--last time they refused to, because dd is over the age of 18 and, despite the fact that all her bills are sent to us, in our name, her records are private and we are not privy to them.
  7. Can someone help clarify this for me? Our dd is currently a f/t college student at a school about 45 minutes' drive from our home: same town, but waaay over on the other side. This past semester she lived on-campus and was awarded financial aid which covered her housing. Unfortunately, she developed severe allergies, and I mean severe, from the air-filtering system in her dorm (they haven't cleaned the ducts in over 30 years, and this is a known, campus-wide problem: mold, mildew, etc). This particular school does NOT allow students to live in off-campus housing; ALL students under age 21 must live on campus OR commute from parents' home. Even despite doctor's notes, they aren't making concessions...dd knows of other students with allergies and asthma who have tried to fight the policy and they have been unsuccessful.So, dd began commuting to- and -from our home mid-semester, while maintaining the dorm room which was covered by various forms of financial aid. Commuting turned into a huge fiasco, very draining for her, especially because she had on-campus projects on the weekends, also, which meant she commuting 7 days a week. The school requires a tremendous amount of on-campus involvement. Not only that, but dd had classes that ended at 10 pm and she either had the choice of 1) going back to her dorm room and using an inhaler and not sleeping that night or 2) driving home late and doing a turnaround trip back to campus at 8 am the following morning. So this semester we took dd off the housing contract and arranged for her to be an "official" commuter student. We have also rented a room in a house near her campus where she can sleep and go in the daytime to study, etc. so that she isn't commuting every day. As far as the school is concerned, dd is a commuter student. But now I am wondering, will dd's financial aid cover any of this? Does FASFA take into account if you are a commuter or living on campus? If dd gets no money for commuting--and with gas going to $4 a gallon!--then we are totally screw*d. We are forking out $400- a month for the room she is using as an office/place to sleep between commutes. Thanks for any advice.
  8. Thank you--and I MUST quote from the article-- "And it's completely natural for freshmen to come home and regress. They may sleep a lot and ask you to do things you haven't done for years. That is fine. You may be doing loads of laundry and taking them to lots of doctors' appointments." I thought something was wrong with dd. Suddenly she was acting 10? 11? and asking me to do things for her, like make her meals (which she had been doing all along at school) and she seemed to enjoy tagging along with me while I did my errands. I thought this was odd, until I looked around me and noticed how many other college students there were traipsing alongside their parents.
  9. Good point--dd was assigned an advisor/professor/sponsor who took it personally that she, dd, no longer wants to pursue the advisor/professor/sponsor's field. She totally did not "get" dd and now dd is looking for an advisor/professor/sponsor with whom she clicks, and the major part is secondary. You are absolutely correct and dd has just learned this. She just found 2 other LACs whose program she can replicate in her own college, as long as she finds a faculty member who will "sponsor" her. I'm sure she will, it's only Environmental Studies with a Conservation focus, nothing too offbeat.
  10. When we were in Alaska we encountered quite a few college students working for the summer season. Most of them were making the extra $$ by 1) hoping for tips, on top of pay and 2) living in the typical 8-to-an-apartment arrangement many of us (K-FL can vouch for this) know all too well. But there is big $$ to be made picking berries--primarily strawberries and blueberries--in Alaska. It is very demanding work, as the fruits just keep on growing (gotta love that 22 hours of daylight) and the work is hard on the body, bug bites galore. I know of several college students who did it and they saved money by sleeping in a tent and living off mac-n-cheese for 6 weeks. Nevertheless, they earned enough money to pay for a trip to Europe the following summer. Every single young person who has worked (and survived) in Alaska seems to be very self-sufficient and has a can-do mentality. We were very impressed by their rugged, cheerful attitudes. Those who want even the remotest of luxuries need not apply.
  11. My stepdaughter was in this exact situation. She applied to numerous schools--our highly-regarded state flagship school and some other private semi-Ivies among them [Tulane, Vanderbilt, Emory]. She ended up going to Emory and, although she made a couple of friends, hated the experience. It was "too rich for her blood". StepD was raised uppermiddle class--her mom could afford full tuition at Emory!--but the mindset and lifestyle of the students did not work for SD. So instead of going the Buckhead and country club route, getting her mani/pedis every weekend, SD went counterculture. Does she regret her choice? I think to some degree, yes. She says she got a fabulous education, but everything else was meh. She never attended her graduation, has no contact with the school or reunions, etc. Our DD has lamented that she did not have the same opportunity. However, knowing what we do about private schools, we would be very particular about the private school DD went to, because many of them which have her desired major and the classes she wants seem to be slightly below her academic level. In fact, some of our state schools have higher admission standards, But if we had unlimited funds then we would send our DD to a private college in Lugano, Switzerland http://www.fc.edu/that has her choice of major, is in a culturally-stimulating environment (we visited the town while on holiday), and we wouldn't have any worries about safety, etc. Oh, and airfare back- and forth- would be of little concern.
  12. I don't think DD is depressed; she has been socializing every day--sometimes a lot, sometimes a little, schedule depending. She has a new studio apartment and she had some friends over for dinner last night. I think DD might be overwhelmed, as her school demands a minimum of 16 credit hours up to 20, per semester. She doesn't mind doing the work when it interests her, but so much of it is tedious. When she has adequate time to pursue her hobbies and interests, many of which are outside of school--kayaking, biking, dance, painting--she can tolerate the monotony of mundane schoolwork. But when she doesn't have enough time to recharge herself, and is immersed in nothing but writing and research from morning until evening, she feels unfulfilled. Hence, my urging for her to consider another school where she can take a slightly lighter (12-15 cr hr) courseload and then have more time for the non-academic things. But dd does not like the idea of going to a new place or making new friends. I guess it's like people who aren't in a very fulfilling marriage but they stay because it's easier than the alternative. DD is going to do a year abroad the year after next, but it remains to be seen what she will pursue. I did talk to her about taking a year off from school but she feels she would get 'behind" her peers. So that's the story, for now. Things are always changing around here.
  13. By "lost" I mean a student who has fallen into a void of apathy. DD is attending a small, highly rigorous LAC that, due to size, has limited course offering and majors. As an incoming freshman last fall, D wanted to go into the sciences, but she discovered she lacks the discipline and drive to do the dirty work, so she defaulted to an exciting Interdisciplinary field mid-semester. Now she is back at school and no longer thrilled with the new major she has chosen. The problem is, she has eliminated so many other options--"I don't like any of those fields" [Humanities, Fine Arts, Nat Sci, Social Sci, History, Poly Sci, etc etc].--that there is really nothing left for her. When I asked her a few days ago if she would like to transfer to a large university with more options, she was adamant in her NO, she is not going to downgrade from her selective LAC to a ho-hum school. She says she can "get by just fine" at her present school because she has good friends and loves the little city in which the college is situated. It's an upscale community with lots of walking areas in a quaint downtown with a ton of restaurants, art galleries, and festivals. But I can see two problems with this-- 1) How long can she continue taking classes towards a major in which she is only half interested? She likes the hands-on part of it, being outdoors and going into the community, interacting with people and the lab work, but the part that involves writing about policy, ethics, theory, etc. interests her not one iota. 2) More critical is the fact that DD is making the choice to stay at her current school because her non-academic life is comfortable. Granted, she is young (19 in just a few days) but DD will run out of options if she decides to give up on what she is now pursing. Since there are no "must do" core courses (she completed all of them while in h/s) to keep her on task, she is floundering and ambivalent about her present and future course choices. I can see her enthusiasm fading already, and on the 'phone she sounds flat, bored, and disenchanted. In a lengthy conversation with her dad she said she was conflicted because she will NOT leave her present school, but she doesn't like the majors there, so she feels trapped by her unwillingness to consider another school. And as she says, what happens if she transfers and discovers it's worse elsewhere? Anyone else been there? Thanks. BTW, she's on a bunch of scholarships and she'll get them whatever in-state school she attends. Also, she is not a party girl, so she's not goofing off in school. She just is not the same girl that we knew last summer who was vibrant and curious and watched BBC World News every morning. Now she seems, well, resigned.
  14. Thanks, Dana--it works with the book dd ended up using. It has some great features explaining the techniques, step by step..
  15. Thank you SO much, David. Yes, dd is at a highly competitive school. She is exempt from math if she chooses to be--and she has so chosen, until now. Daughter has taken Algebra 2 twice in h/s and both times earned Bs, but it was memorized just to pass, and quickly forgotten. Most work was on the computer, multiple choice answers, and thus, no long-term memory gain which comes with writing (and worksheets). She has tried to teach herself from Lials' and Blitzers' books, but she gets lost in the text, spends too much time reading theory and not enough time solving problems. because she has attention/focus problems she is easily distracted with photos, graphics, stories, fonts of different colors and sizes, etc etc. I am certain she will be able to cover MathTutorDVD Algebra 1 and Algebra 2 within a month. I've run through them myself and they are very concise yet thorough. Exactly what she needs. In February she is hoping to move on to College Algebra (Pre-Calc) in a self-study class. for 4 months. The best text she has found is Pre-Calculus: A Unit Circle Approach ISBN 9780321537096 which seems to align quite well with the MathTutorDVD Advanced Algebra, Matrix Algebra, and Trig & Pre-Calc dvds.
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