Iowa Families Learn to Plan for Total College Cost; Students Receive Monetary Awards for Educational Expenses

June 14, 2018

Eighteen new Iowa high school graduates and three younger students recently received monetary awards to help cover educational expenses after they or their families completed a free online tool to estimate the total cost of a four-year undergraduate degree.

Iowa high school students, and their parents or guardians, were able to enter their information for the drawings after completing the College Funding Forecaster between March 5 and May 11, 2018. This free consumer education tool provided by Iowa Student Loan® uses information from students' freshman year financial aid award packets, as well as outside scholarships and grants and family savings and earnings, to project estimated costs, funding gaps and potential student loan debt over four years.

"We really feel this tool is vital to help families plan for a complete undergraduate education," said Christine Hensley, chair of the Iowa Student Loan board of directors. "We use the Giveaway contest to draw attention and expose families to the tool's features, which help them estimate total costs over four years as part of an overall plan to minimize student loan debt. We are pleased to see so many families entering after going through the module this year."

More than 900 qualifying entries were received from all over the state, representing nearly 280 Iowa high schools.

Sixteen 2018 Iowa high school graduates met the requirements to each claim an award of $250 for education expenses after having their names randomly chosen in weekly drawings. They are:

Student NameHigh School
Everett WillsonBurlington High School
Jordan LarsonGehlen Catholic High School
Sadie BrockettGladbrook-Reinbeck High School
Nathan ButlerHighland High School
Madison SommersIndianola High School
Rachel StrangIowa City High School
Aaron HoweMOC-Floyd Valley High School
Owen MeyerNorth Cedar High School
Erin GoraczkowskiNorth Union High School
Erech HazenNorwalk High School
Abby CrownerNotre Dame High School
Andraya SowersPleasantville High School
Reece SuterRock Valley High School
Nicholas ReschSpirit Lake High School
Madeline MoenVinton-Shellsburg High School
Renee KerrWilton High School

Three younger students also fulfilled the requirements to claim one of the weekly drawing awards.

Student NameHigh School
Bethany Kallio (high school class of 2021)Ballard High School
Grace Reekers (high school class of 2021)Belle Plaine High School
Dahlyn Ott (high school class of 2019)South Winneshiek High School

In addition, two high school seniors' names were randomly drawn by an independent third party to each receive a $1,500 scholarship award to the colleges they will attend this fall.

Student NameHigh School
Marissa TunningCarroll High School
Drake BellerSioux City North High School

The College Funding Forecaster is available online at The tool allows families to customize both expenses and available funding to adjust results for changes in students' situations over the four years. The results show yearly and total estimated costs of attendance, available funding and projected funding gaps. The tool also provides informational tips on how to reduce costs and potential debt.

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Media Contact

Christopher Weishaar, Digital PR Specialist, (515) 273-7102,