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Summer Programs for Artists, College Tax Breaks, and Tips for High School Seniors

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Julia Jones

Written by Julia Joneson February 22nd, 2018

I have been working in education with students for more than 20 years. I spent many years working in the admissions office at Brandeis University, where I was involved in virtually all aspects of the admissions process. As a senior member of the admissions committee, I was a key decision maker on applications, and I met and recruited students around the country and from major cities including Boston, Cleveland, Dallas, Houston, San Francisco, Atlanta, and Nashville. I also served as director of a one-thousand member national network of alumni recruiters and interviewers. Prior to joining College Coach, I continued my work with high school students and their families as director of admissions at a private day and boarding school in Massachusetts.
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Ian Fisher hosts the latest episode of Getting In: A College Coach Conversation, covering a diverse range of topics, including summer planning for artists, the impact of your college payments on this year’s taxes, and what high school seniors should be focused on now that college applications are in. Summer Programs for Student Artists For the first segment, Ian is joined by college admissions expert (and accomplished musician) Kyra Tyler. Together they discuss summer opportunities and planning for student musicians, actors, artists, and dancers. Kyra starts by addressing what students of the arts should be thinking about as they plan their summer, and how their summer planning is different from other students who may be focused on a more traditional academic path. The key, she states, is practice, practice, practice! For arts students, it’s imperative to use summer as a way to hone your craft and to find ways to always be engaged in your discipline even when not performing. Kyra outlines how to do this for all areas of the arts: for visual artists, singers, instrumental musicians, dancers, and actors. Ian and Kyra also discuss making the most of summer before senior year to build a portfolio or audition piece, as well as the value of summer arts programs for non-majors. Kyra also catalogues her favorite arts programs around the country. College Tax Breaks With tax day approaching, and so much focus on the new Tax Cuts and Jobs Act for 2018, Ian shifts the discussion to focus on what families who paid for college in 2017 need to know about this year’s tax filing. College Coach finance expert Cynde Quinn joins Ian to provide guidance on federal tax breaks for families who paid college expenses last year.  Cynde breaks it down to focus first on the basics, the two main ways to save money on taxes—deductions and credits. She outlines how to qualify for each, both for this year and in planning ahead for future years. She and Ian then touch on the new Tax Cuts and Jobs Act and what college tax breaks will be available moving forward, before addressing other things for families to think about, from using tax preparation software to creating a plan for record-keeping. High School Seniors: What Now? For the third segment, College Coach expert Kara Courtois is on board for an informal conversation with Ian about seniors—what they should be doing now that their second (and final!) semester of high school is underway and their college applications are in! Kara, drawing on her own experience teaching high school seniors, talks about their change in focus and attitude in the second semester, and both the positives and challenges of maneuvering the last few months of high school. Kara advises students on how to finish their senior year on a good note, and how to focus on getting ready for college. Ian and Kara talk more about that transition to college, what it means for students and their parents, and how to make the most of that final summer before heading off to school. Don’t miss the next episode of Getting In: A College Coach Conversation, which will focus on the connections between college major and careers, and will feature a double segment of Q&A on both college admissions and finance. Getting-In-CTA


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