Talent mobility is a characteristic trend of the 21st century. People from Latin America and Asia are attending schools in the United States and Europe. According to the International Labour Organization (ILO), 86 million people work in places outside their country of origin. This globalization trend is creating new challenges for higher education and providing unprecedented opportunities to a new generation. As a result of the technological revolution, developed countries can reach the best talent in Asia, Eastern Europe, the Middle East, and Latin America. Companies can now communicate instantly with locations all over the world. Transportation systems are growing to accommodate an increase in travel and connections around the world.
A good education is important to succeed in today’s labor market. However, the cost of a four-year degree at the most prestigious universities in the United States can cost more than $200,000 (2009) and is increasing at a rate of 5% per year. Therefore, an education savings plan is an essential tool to pay for that education. StateTrust Life & Annuities offers several investment options in the currency of your choice (such as the currency of the country where the education will take place). StateTrust offers two education plans:
- Scholar: A multicurrency education plan with variable return, which offers a savings plan that invests in fixed and variable income funds and indexes. This plan covers educational expenses at the beginning of the educational period.
- Eduplan: An education plan with guaranteed returns, which offers a savings plan with a fixed income to guarantee a specific amount of money that will be paid during the entire educational period selected.
Planning for your children’s education should begin when they are born. Typically, we have about 18 years to structure and ensure the necessary benefits and income to cover future university expenses.
However, the above is not a rule set in stone. Generally speaking, education planning can begin at any point before your child starts college. But the longer the investment time horizon, the greater the likelihood of reaching the planned financial objectives and the more stable the compound rate of return on the investment.
In addition, it is possible to meet unexpected expenses without endangering the budget you have set aside for higher education.
Several steps must be taken into account to have a solid plan in place for your children’s education:
- Evaluate the individual’s financial situation
- Calculate college costs for each beneficiary of the plan.
- Establish financial goals and budgets, and the time needed to reach them. Research return options from your savings and income.
- Choose Eduplan, Eduplan Growth or Scholar to ensure income every six months to cover your beneficiary’s education.
At StateTrust Life & Annuities, we supplement your children’s education plan with these actions:
- We calculate your children’s future educational expenses and develop strategies to help you cover these expenses.
- We forecast future expenses with information we have from various universities. These projections serve to anticipate your child’s expenses based on the higher education institution of your choice.
- College costs are adjusted based on inflation. This way, when your children start their higher education, all costs will be current and accounted for under financial projections.
Knowledge is the most important asset in the economy of the third millennium. In addition, there is specialization and so-called self-branding (3), which translates into the way a person is able to position themselves in a global market, through specialized knowledge and a unique way of communicating this knowledge. This new landscape comes with great financial challenges and efforts for parents seeking to provide their children with an excellent education. Let’s look at some relevant data:
- In 2009, it cost about US $200,000 to study at the most prestigious universities in the United States. This figure includes tuition and room and board for four years.
- Financial aid covers about 40% of total college costs, which are increasing at a rate of about 5% each year.
(3) Manpower, 2007 pp 12,23.
Seven out of ten full-time students receive financial aid either through loans or scholarships, both for low income students and the most academically outstanding students.
- Most financial aid goes to students with financial need.
Alternatives for Education Plans
- With guaranteed returns:
- Variable, with investments in mutual funds: Eduplan Growth.
- Variable, multicurrency, through Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) or capital markets indexes:
Children don’t have to be the only beneficiaries of education planning. Plan holders may also save with an education plan to fund future postgraduate or doctoral plans.