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Meet a College Finance Expert: Chrissy Foran

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Chrissy Foran

Written by Chrissy Foranon November 3rd, 2022

I've worked for both public and private colleges and have experience with undergraduate, graduate and professional students from all backgrounds. Prior to joining College Coach, I worked for Washington State University helping medical students, nursing students and other medical professional students through the process of paying for their education. I have a master’s degree in human resources, bachelor’s degrees in Education and English and an associate’s degree. I'm a member of the Washington Association of Financial Aid Administrators.
Learn More About Chrissy
Our Meet a Finance Educator series introduces students and parents to members of the Bright Horizons College Coach finance team. Drop in to see what we do to relax, where we went to college, the best financial advice we’ve received, and how we work with families to navigate the college finance process. Whether you’re looking to appeal a financial aid offer, maximize merit scholarship opportunities, or spend your assets strategically, our college finance experts are here to help. Today we introduce Chrissy Foran. Where are you from, where have you lived, and where do you live now? I am from Spokane, Washington. After college, I ended up in Northern Idaho, in a beautiful lake town called Coeur d’Alene, for about 15 years. Two years ago, my husband and I moved to Phoenix. We love the constant sunshine and don’t miss the cold winters of the northwest! What are you reading, watching, and/or listening to lately?  I love true crime documentaries. What do you do for fun or to relax? My husband and I love to golf. We enjoy working out and lounging by our pool. We learned to appreciate cooking during COVID and have really enjoyed discovering new dishes together. We play lots of cards, cribbage, and backgammon. I enjoy shopping for antiques, doing yoga, and practicing meditation. Where did you go to college? I completed two years at a community college in Seattle and later transferred to the University of Washington where I received my Bachelor’s in English Literature. I originally wanted to be a teacher so I went to Eastern Washington University to get my Bachelor’s in Education. I also have a Master’s in Human Resources from Keller Graduate School of Management. Where did you work in financial aid? I served as a financial aid director at a for-profit institution, Apollo College, then moved to Gonzaga University. After that I worked in the student loan industry and then ended my financial aid career working at Washington State University before landing at Bright Horizons College Coach. How do you encourage families to look beyond the rankings and find the schools that meet their financial priorities? I believe that it’s not where you go, it’s what you do while you’re there. So much in life is based on what you’ve done, the groups and clubs you’ve joined, the volunteering you’ve done, your grades and the classes you take. It’s so much more fun to be at a school that feels right and where you have opportunities, rather than choosing a school based on the fact that it is top ranked. In the grand scheme of things, school rankings don’t mean a lot if you don’t have opportunities to grow, learn, and feel comfortable in your environment with people you trust. What is the advice you give students who are thinking about borrowing loans for college? My advice is that if you have to borrow loans, make sure you can afford your monthly payment based on the average salary of the career you are pursuing. What is the best financial advice you ever received? The best advice I ever received was to start saving when you’re young. The magic of compound interest is an amazing thing! Even if you can only save $10 a month in a Roth IRA or some other investment you can see first-hand how small contributions can really amount to big things. To learn more about Chrissy, visit her bio.

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