(WALB) - The cost of college can be a financial burden for many families. That's why state officials are encouraging Georgia residents during College Savings Month to start saving early using the Path2College 529 Plan.
The state-run college savings plan allows families or individuals to get a state income tax deduction for putting money into the account, and then when the money is used for college education expenses, it comes out federal and state tax free.
Executive director Mitch Seabaugh says studies show children with college savings accounts are 7 times more likely to pursue higher education. He says saving early is key.
"Too many graduate high school and don't have the financial means to be able to go to school, to go to higher education and thus they miss out on that higher education, and we believe it's very important that we want to raise awareness to the people of Georgia that this tool exists," Seabaugh said.
Path2College is also offering a $5,229 scholarship to two winners of their What If...? Sweepstakes. Seabaugh hopes the sweepstakes will help them to raise awareness about the 529 Plan.
"So they can go to our website, enter the sweepstakes but we're hoping while they're there they'll look at the plan, and see the benefits of the plan," he said, "and if its a good tool that can be used by them for the benefit of their children and open an account and start saving."
To learn more about the 529 plan, visit their website.