Annual ’5/29 College Savings Day’ offers excellent time for families to start saving

May 12, 2014

The University of Alaska College Savings Plan joins the College Savings Plans Network and state savings plans around the nation in celebrating “5/29 College Savings Day” on May 29 (5/29).

“Higher education is one of the best investments a person can make in a lifetime,” said Lael Oldmixon, UA College Savings Plan director. “I encourage Alaska families to take some time on 5/29 College Savings Day to discuss their college savings goals as a family and learn how a college savings plan can help make those goals a reality.”

On May 29, the UA College Savings Plan will host free public celebrations in both Fairbanks and Anchorage. The Fairbanks event will run from 10 a.m. to noon in the Butrovich Building on the UAF campus, in partnership with the Fairbanks Children Museum. The event in Anchorage will take place from 3 to 6 p.m. at the Kaleidoscape Play Studio in the University Center Mall. Both events will offer refreshments, giveaways and information about the UA College Savings Plan.

Additionally, on May 19, the plan will give away a limited number of red, youth-sized t-shirts. The shirts feature a large arrow pointing upward with the words “is going to college” underneath.

“We received wonderful feedback about last year’s t-shirt giveaway, so we decided to do it again,” Oldmixon said.

UA is asking recipients to share photos of their youngsters wearing the shirts on Facebook. “Last year we enjoyed seeing kids across the state sporting their shirts,” Oldmixon said.

She added that the aim is to get both parents and children thinking about education and workforce training beyond high school. To request a free shirt on May 19, visit the UA College Savings Plan’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/ak529.

The UA College Savings Plan is a top-ranked 529 plan, known for its section of tax code within the Internal Revenue Service. The program is designed to help families save while offering tax benefits. Savings have the potential to grow faster in a 529 plan because potential earnings are tax-deferred, and are tax-free if the account is used for qualified higher education expenses at an eligible school. The plan offers a variety of investment options managed by T. Rowe Price, a recognized leader in no-load mutual funds. The most widely recognized benefit for Alaskans is the ACT portfolio, which offers the UA Tuition-Value Guarantee and is a balanced, low-cost option. This portfolio can also be a good choice if the child is likely to attend the University of Alaska; however, its monetary value can be used at virtually any college or vocational school in the country.

Alaskans can invest in the plan directly or through their Alaska Permanent Fund Dividend.  UA employees may use automatic payroll deduction to invest in the plan.

To learn more about the UA College Savings Plan, visit uacollegesavings.com.

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