COLLEGE FINANCING 101 – Understanding and Affording College Tuition

For parents of college-bound students, understanding how to finance tuition has become an education unto itself. To clarify the options and help simplify the process, Newsday conducted an in-depth seminar to help educate parents and students on financing a college education. The hour-long seminar was held at the Newsday corporate headquarters in Melville, New York.

Experts in admissions and financial aid, New York State loans and grants, as well loan officers from our sponsor, Island Federal Credit Union, provided important information every incoming freshman and their parents should know. With a program so rich in useful content, Newsday and Island Federal Credit Union wanted to bring College Financing 101 to the broader public.

Here, you will find a series of video tutorials on financing a college education for the 2018-2019 school year. You will also find a list of important links and resources to continue your education in college financing.


College Financing 101: The Cliff Notes Overview, Larry Dunn, Senior Director of Sales & Marketing, Island Federal Credit Union

This video, introduced by Larry Dunn, Senior Director of Marketing & Sales for Island Federal Credit Union provides a “Cliff Notes” version of the hour-long College Financing 101 seminar for Long Island parents and students. It top-lines the purpose of the seminar, introduces the panel of speakers and offers a synopsis of each of their topics and talks. Best viewed in tandem with the other topic-specific video segments.

Supplemental Financing and Scholarships—Timothy Aaraas, Director of Retail Lending, Island Federal Credit Union

Financing a college education is top of mind for any high school student or parent of a high school student. As the Director of Lending for Island Federal Credit Union, Tim will discuss credit union loan options and their Student Choice partner that can help families afford the “gap” between federal loan options and the actual cost of tuition, as well as alternate means of supplemental financing such as Home Equity Lines Of Credit. In addition, Tim will talk specifically about Island Federal Credit Union’s long-standing scholarship program that defines the credit union’s philosophy of “people helping people” by offering $50,000 to help meet rising college costs and ease the burden on Long Island families. Since 1992, Island Federal Credit Union has given away 294 scholarships totaling $540,000 dollars to deserving students. In 2018, Island Federal Credit Union will award eleven scholarships, 3 at the $10,000 level and 8 at $2,500 each.

Understanding and Applying for the New York State Excelsior Scholarship Program—Diane Kazanecki-Kempter, Director of Student Financial Services, SUNY Farmingdale

2017 marked the first year of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo’s Excelsior Scholarship, a first-of-its-kind in the nation program, to provide tuition-free education at New York’s public colleges and universities. As Director of Financial Aid at SUNY Farmingdale, Ms. Kazanecki-Kempter will discuss requirements and eligibility, and advise parents and students how – and when – to fill out the forms. Ms. Kazanecki-Kempter will also share her experiences to help scholarship seeking seniors avoid common pitfalls, and how to maintain this tuition-free program throughout a four-year college term.

Getting the Most from Your School/Guidance Counseling Office—Barbara Donnellan Ed.D Coordinator of Guidance, Lindenhurst Public Schools

In this informative session, Dr. Donnellan will discuss, through her experience and anecdotes, how parents and high school seniors should work with their school guidance counseling office to understand and approach the college admission process. More importantly, Dr. Donnellan will speak to the mindset and approach to financing a college education, and urge parents to handle the process as they would any other large purchase: with forethought, knowledge and a clear understanding of the process.

Thank You to Our Sponsor

Island Federal Credit Union is a not-for-profit, full-service financial institution, providing affordable banking products and services to Long Islanders. For over 60 years, Island Federal Credit Union has offered their members better value and service for their everyday banking, enabling them to achieve their dreams by helping them to purchase a home, send their kids to college, and afford a comfortable retirement.

Founded in 1955, Island Federal Credit Union has grown to be among the top performing credit unions in New York State with over $1.3 billion in assets, serving more than 38,000 members. Island Federal Credit Union’s successful track record can be attributed to consistently delivering the best rates, no hidden fees, and exceptional service to its members.

Island Federal Credit Union is a proud sponsor of Newsday Brand360’s College Financing 101 event. Please take note of the following websites for more information about financing a college education:

Island Federal Credit Union – Island Federal Credit Union

Higher Education Services Corporation (HESC) – 

Contact the Scholarship Unit via email at or call 888-697-4372

Free Application for Student Aid (FAFSA) –

Tap on the Web Application –

New York State Excelsior –

View Newsday’s 2017 College Admission & STEAM Guide 

The news and editorial staff of Newsday had no role in the creation of this content