Game on: Why College Admission Is Rigged and How to Beat the System

Game on: Why College Admission Is Rigged and How to Beat the System - Susan F. Paterno

Game on: Why College Admission Is Rigged and How to Beat the System


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? Is the college admissions game really rigged against you?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it
- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt

Insightful and practical, Game On not only provides a smart, seasoned insider's look at a complicated process, but simplifies it, cutting through the noise and distractions the schools blast your way. It will become your efficient and indispensable road map to understanding and beating the system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.

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How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? Is the college admissions game really rigged against you?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it
- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt

Insightful and practical, Game On not only provides a smart, seasoned insider's look at a complicated process, but simplifies it, cutting through the noise and distractions the schools blast your way. It will become your efficient and indispensable road map to understanding and beating the system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than the local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle-and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of-state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and author, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, financing their four-year educations on a finite budget. She smartly decodes the college admissions industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you needed to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to use a sorting hat of your own devising--narrowing your focus, analyzing who gets in and why, looking for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation and, especially, ranking.

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college became a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful end
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the hunger games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admissions, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.


Director of the Chapman journalism program--and mother of four recent college grads--Susan F. Paterno leads you through the admissions process to help you and your family make the best decision possible.

How is it possible that Harvard is more affordable for most American families than their local state university? Or that up to half of eligible students receive no financial aid? Or that public universities are rejecting homegrown middle- and working-class applicants and instead enrolling wealthy out-of- state students? College admission has escalated into a high-stakes game of emotional and financial survival. How is the deck stacked against you? And what can you do about it?

Susan F. Paterno, a veteran academic and journalist, answers these questions and more in Game On. Paterno helped her four very different kids navigate the application process to a wide range of colleges, paying for their four-year educations on a finite budget. She incisively decodes the college admission industry--the consultants, the tutors, the rankers, the branding companies hawking "advantage"--and arms you with the knowledge you need to make the system work for you.

You'll learn how to narrow your focus, analyze who gets in and why, and look for the right financial fit before considering anything else, including geography, reputation, and, especially, ranking.

Among the tools and insights in Game On:

- Why forty years of failed free-market policies have led to skyrocketing tuition and historic levels of student debt
- Why applying to college has become a bewildering maze and how to find your way to a successful result
- Why college costs are more terrifying than you think
- How to read beyond the rack rate to negotiate the best financial package with the least debt
- Why merit is a myth, but merit aid is essential
- The difference between family debt and student debt and how to split it

A playbook for the Hunger Games of higher education, Game On explains the anxiety, uncertainty, and chaos in college admission, explodes the myth of meritocracy, exposes the academy's connection to America's widening gap between rich and poor, and provides strategies to beat--and reform--a broken system.

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*Reducerea aplicata prin cupon nu se cumuleaza, ci se aplica reducerea cea mai mare.

Ma abonez image one
Ma abonez image one