A Tradition of Helping Grandkids Pay for College

Ruth Ann was thinking about her own mother’s generosity when she opened Learning Quest plans for her grandchildren.

“What my Mom did was the coolest thing. Every month, she sent my kids a check while they were in college and it meant they didn’t have to worry about every little thing. They didn’t have to take out student loans, they were able to do sorority stuff… my son didn’t have to pick up a job while he was in school, and he still had money to get pizza with friends,” she says.

She set a goal of doing the same thing for her six grandchildren, all of whom are growing up within eight miles of each other in Olathe, Kan. When Ruth Ann got divorced, she wanted to keep everybody grounded and moving in the right direction. Gathering the entire family together at her home every Sunday is one way she does that; putting away money for their college education is another.

“It was so easy to set it up with Learning Quest and with the low monthly contributions, I honestly do not even miss the money. It’s even tax deductible,” Ruth Ann says. “Thankfully, it’s helping me reach my goals.” She taught business, law and finance to high school students for 40 years, and she says automatic deductions are a great way to go.

“It’s out of sight, out of mind,” she says of the monthly contributions. She also appreciates the flexibility of a 529 plan because she doesn’t know whether all of her grandchildren will go to a traditional four-year college. If they want to go to a trade school, they could still benefit from Ruth Ann’s monthly gift.

“It’s just that extra bonus from Grandma,” she says. “Anyone can do this, regardless of your income. With a $25 minimum, it’s an easy-peasy way to leave a legacy gift for your grandchildren.”



The availability of tax or other state benefits (such as financial aid, scholarship funds and protection from creditors) may be conditioned on meeting certain requirements, such as residency, purpose for or timing of distributions, or other factors.