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20 May 2012

Treasurer McCord says great way to prepare for rising higher education costs

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May 20, 2012 Category: Color Of Money Posted by:

HARRISBURG – As students approach the end of the school year, parents are recognizing their child is one year closer to higher education – and the bills associated with it. State Treasurer Rob McCord today reminded families they can prepare for future higher education costs now with the Pennsylvania 529 College Savings Program.


“The fact that another school year is about to conclude is a reminder of just how quickly our children grow,” said Treasurer McCord. “So while it’s true kids grow fast, the sad reality is that the costs of a higher education seem to grow faster.


“Tuesday, May 29 is ‘529 Day,’ a day dedicated to raising awareness about the importance of saving for college. 529 Day reminds us that saving for college really is doable – all you need is a plan,” said Treasurer McCord, who added many financial experts consider 529 plans to be one of the best ways to save for college.


“We want to help families get on the path to saving for higher education, so we’re offering a chance to win one of 10 $529 college savings accounts at for those who register before May 31. We’re also offering free enrollment in the PA 529 Guaranteed Savings Plan through the end of the month, which is a $50 savings. Our ‘529 Day’ incentives make May a particularly valuable time to get started, so I encourage families to visit today.”


The McCord Treasury offers two great tax-advantaged 529 plans to help prepare for future higher education costs – the PA 529 Guaranteed Savings Plan, or GSP, and the PA 529 Investment Plan, or IP.


Growth in the PA 529 GSP is based on tuition inflation. For example, if you save enough now for a semester at one of Pennsylvania’s State System of Higher Education universities you will have enough for a semester there in the future – no matter when or how much tuition increases in the meantime.


Returns in the PA 529 IP are based on financial market performance. The PA 529 IP features low fees and more than a dozen conservative and aggressive investment options from Vanguard, one of the nation’s largest financial services companies. There is never an enrollment fee for the PA 529 IP.


Families saving through either plan receive tax-deferred growth on earnings and tax-free withdrawals when funds are used for qualified educational expenses.


“Put time on your side and prepare for tomorrow’s higher tuition rates with the Pennsylvania 529 College Savings Program,” Treasurer McCord said. “The benefits of higher education are clear: greater employment prospects and earning potential, and a greater likelihood of leading a happy, healthy and fulfilling life. We know many parents think the price tag of a college education or the process of saving for it can be daunting, so they delay. That simply hurts you in the long run, so whether it’s a little or a lot, start saving today!”


To learn more about the PA 529 College Savings Program or to enter the scholarship sweepstakes, visit or call 1-800-440-4000.

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