Life Advice



Ask Amy: Grandparents should lob softball over college choice

Amy Dickinson, Tribune Content Agency on

Dear Amy: We have been fortunate enough to set aside money for our grandkids’ college education. The first grandchild is graduating in June.

She has been hesitant about starting college next fall and is thinking about taking a gap year.

Her parents are anxious for her to attend a small private school and play softball, even though she will not receive a scholarship, although they are holding out the hope that she might get something if she enrolls and plays for one year.

Granddaughter seems daunted by the cost, which will certainly result in sizable student loans. She is an extremely good student, but she did not get any major scholarships.

My spouse and I know our financial gift does not give us a voice in choosing a school, or profession, but we’d like to find a way to advise our granddaughter to choose her own path and make her own decisions.

We think she should take a gap year if she wishes, forget about softball, except as recreation, and enroll in a community college or a state school to limit her debt.


We do not want to offend our son and daughter-in-law, who are wonderful people, but we believe they are a little unrealistic about sports and sports scholarships.

Can you offer any suggestions?

– Grandparents

Dear Grandparents: Your contribution to your granddaughter’s education DOES give you a “voice.” It does not give you a “choice,” however.


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