Each year of elementary school, right alongside my school picture, I wrote down what I thought I wanted to be when I grew up. My dream job of the future changed annually – likely because of someone I had met or an experience I had – and ranged from bus driver to teacher to marine biologist. (Doesn’t every kid want to be a marine biologist at some point in their life?)

As I got older and started high school I realized a career wasn’t just something I should be dreaming about, I really needed to figure out what I was going to do with my life! That meant making a plan, setting some goals and saving some money.

Whatever your child dreams of being – veterinarian, video game designer, artist, dolphin trainer, eye doctor, teacher or any other type of professional – it’s never too early to set goals, make a plan and save some money.

Studies indicate that 88% of high wage growth occupations will require some type of education or training after high school, or extensive work experience. Yet, a lack of funds, steadily rising college costs and the increased burden of student loan debt are primary reasons why many would-be college students don’t achieve their dreams.

Don’t let the cost of education or training beyond high school be a barrier for your child. Whether your child’s dream job requires a four-year degree, technical college or other type of training or education, there are many opportunities to help them reach their goal.

October is Arizona College Savings Month. With that in mind, The Arizona Commission for Postsecondary Education and Expect More Arizona have a variety of information and resources for the entire family.

  • Children are invited to participate in the Arizona College Savings Program Coloring Contest to win a $250 scholarship. Click here to download the coloring contest form and draw a picture of what you want to be when you grow up!
  • Parents and/or grandparents are encouraged to visit az529.gov to download the free AZ College Savings Planner.
  • The entire family can look for Pennywise, the AZ529 Plan mascot, at the Phoenix Zoo’s annual Boo at the Zoo event on Oct. 25. Coloring contest forms, College Savings Planners and other information will be available at the event.
  • Find more ways to get engaged in your child’s education at TodayInAZ.org and azhighered.gov.

Young MelissaMelissa Lempke is Vice President of Marketing & Communications for Expect More Arizona. She grew up and attended school in Wisconsin and when she was 6 she wanted to be a bus driver.






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