Prelaw workshop to emphasize awareness of student debt

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    By David Dowling

    BYU Prelaw Advisement will sponsor a free financial aid workshop at 3 p.m. on Tuesday Feb. 25 for students planning to attend graduate school.

    Eileen Crane, BYU prelaw adviser, said the aim of the workshop is to enhance students” awareness and ability to control debt so they can be free to have the kind of career they choose.

    “Debt is the number one impact on job choice,” Crane said. “The more debt a student accrues, the more of an impact it will have on what job you take.”

    Each month, students are invited to learn how to survive graduate school without incurring high debt.

    The workshop will show students the different options available to help them pay increasing college fees.

    The Prelaw Advisement Center recently presented its Debt and Career Management Conference.

    More than 315 students and spouses pre-registered for the conference to learn how to apply for, obtain and repay law school loans

    Advisers from 14 different law schools attended the conference at their own expense to help BYU students learn how to get loans and financial aid at their schools.

    Chuck Roboski, director of Admissions at Notre Dame School of Law, said he is impressed with the prelaw advisement office at BYU.

    Roboski said he doesn”t know of other universities that give the same kind of help and advice to students.

    As a group, Roboski said BYU students are among the strongest applicants for many institutions.

    Lance Smemoe, 22, a senior from Springfield, Miss., majoring in physics, attended the conference with his wife Kristi.

    Smemoe, who has applied to several law schools, wanted to learn how to survive the financial cost associated with a legal education.

    “I know law school is a good investment, but it is very expensive,” Smemoe said. “I just want to get through it with as little debt as possible.”

    Kristi Smemoe, a senior from Dayton, Minn., majoring in geography, said she wanted to learn what options are available for borrowing money for her husband”s education.

    “I want to know what is going on,” Kristi said. “This is for our family, not just Lance.”

    The monthly workshops cover several financial aid issues including, loans, scholarships and financial aid available to students.

    Each workshop is open to 20 students. The workshop is in 3241 WSC and students should call 422-2318 to reserve a spot.

    Students planning to go to law school can get information from the Prelaw Advisement Center in 3234 WSC or at www.byu.edu/ccc/prelaw.

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