I was referred to Candace for help in accessing scholarship dollars shortly before the fall semester started. We were under a severe time crunch and she was able to provide us with key information that enabled us to ask the right questions to the right folks at my niece’s university. Our main concern was basic: not enough financial aid or scholarship dollars to cover my niece’s tuition.
Candace was outstanding in her approach to helping us understand what dollars potentially could be available. She also provided us with a step-by-step plan on what we needed to do next. She was also very clear on managing expectations and understanding realistically what could occur and what could not.
We learned about grant dollars that potentially would be made available as well as future considerations for scholarship funds through part-time employment. We also learned of grant dollars that could be available for high needs students at the University. Finally, we learned to ask for an extension on the deadline for when the tuition was due. This would prevent late fees from being tacked on to the tuition balance.
Candace is an absolute professional. She is a great communicator and breaks down a lot of these complex issues into very simple terms. She is an active listener and works to understand the issues and needs of the family/student. She also reviews or recommendations multiple times to ensure that you clearly understand your situation and next steps. She was available to speak to us over the weekend and took her time as we discussed opportunities for the future. Her guidance and thoughtful recommendations enabled an additional $7500 of scholarship funds to be accessed by my niece. We spoke to her on a Saturday evening and my niece was awarded these extra dollars by that Monday afternoon. Outstanding guidance and leadership! I would recommend Candace to anyone seeking help and understanding on how to navigate the finances of going to college.
Yvette Santiago, Family Member
I am a school counselor at a high school, and I needed guidance on how to best support my students and families with college and career readiness. I needed support with how to engage my students and parents to increase FAFSA completion rates. I also needed support with engaging underclassman in preparing for college (Scholarships, college searching, FAFSA) before senior year arrived. - before senior year arrived.
Candace is a mentor to me. She has encouraged me and has supported me with helping me to prioritize and organize my efforts that support students. She has shown me how to advocate for myself as a professional school counselor and shown me more ways to advocate for students and for the programs that support our students. Candace's help is the best mentorship I have received during my career as a professional school counselor. She knows how to connect with a family, is genuine in nature and no matter the knowledge level of a student or family member, she will provide the same level of enthusiasm, professionalism and resources. Candace is funny, she has great stories that are relatable and as a presenter she is likable and makes an effort to engage and include the audience.
It is very obvious that Candace loves the work she does. She is an expert in her field as she constantly studies her field of work. I know I can always turn to her for support and answers and if she doesn't know it at the time, she is humble enough to say she does not know at the moment and is happy to go searching for an answer.
Aisha W., School Counselor
I wanted to work with Candace because she puts students first. The financial aid process is a complex one and her help was very valuable to the kids and our organization. We learned that the financial aid process is a complex and changing process that one needs to stay on top of. I did not know much about the CSS profile; however, I know a lot more now that I have done walk throughs with her.
I think she does a great job and cares for the students and families that she works with. Her dedication and passion are noteworthy.
Ankur Arya, Executive Director, LYTE Scholars
Candace Kinard Consulting for“ Stand By Me” - Great presentation at Mount Pleasant High School. So much more information than I ever got with my oldest child a few years ago when we were going through the same process. I am definitely signing up for the hands-on FASFA workshop at the school. I really think I made some major mistakes with my first student that cost us big time and I definitely do not want to make those same mistakes again. Thank you so much!
Leslie McGuigan, Parent
Thank you....thank you.....thank you!! Jordan had been accepted to 5 different colleges. He finally chose West Chester. He had applied for various scholarships. He was selected to interview for several. He has gotten some money from his bowling league and from Alpha Kappa Alpha.
I don't think I would have been able to navigate this whole college pathway without her help. Going to the college fair at the convention center and sitting in on the financial aid session was the most helpful. I would encourage every parent to go. Thank you so much!!
Lisa A. Jackson, Parent