The MEFA Podcast

The MEFA Podcast

Welcome to MEFA's podcast series. Here you'll find conversations with experts about every step of planning, saving, and paying for college and reaching financial goals. You can listen to each podcast right on this page, or through your preferred podcast app. Send us a question and we might answer it on the next episode.


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The MEFA Podcast
Episode #85. Host Jonathan Hughes talks with Co-Director of College Counseling at Gann Academy, Sherri Geller, about gap years, a period of time when students take a break from school, usually between high school and college. Sherri discusses what a gap year is, how students can research different programs, how colleges respond to students taking gap years, and more. If you enjoy the MEFA Podcast, please leave us a review.
The MEFA Podcast
Episode #82. Host Jonathan Hughes speaks with Drew Carter, Deputy Director of Admission at College of the Holy Cross, about his tips for students visiting a college campus. They discuss what to look for, when to go, who to talk to, how to remember your visit, and much more. If you enjoy the MEFA Podcast, please leave us a review.
The MEFA Podcast
Episode #81. Host Jonathan Hughes talks with Professor of the Practice of Biomedical Engineering and Global Health Emeritus at Duke University and founder of the International Research Institute (IRI) Dr. Robert Malkin. They discuss his journey to teaching at Duke, his love of science, and his creation of the IRI. Dr. Malkin also speaks to the importance of research, how he helps high school students get involved in it, and how that supports the education of those students. If you enjoy the MEFA Podcast, please leave us a review.
The MEFA Podcast
Episode #80. In celebration of Drinking Water Week, host Jonathan Hughes talks with Jennifer Pederson, the Executive Director of Mass Water Works Association, about what Mass Water Works does and their employment opportunities. They discuss water systems, trainings, and careers within the field. Jonathan also talks to Carter Gruca, who, through Mass Water Works, was able to obtain licenses and get a job with the Fitchburg Water Department. If you enjoy the MEFA Podcast, please leave us a review.
The MEFA Podcast
Episode #79. Host Jonathan Hughes talks with MEFA’s intern, Jariel Ruiz, a senior at Cristo Rey High School in Boston about his MEFA internship and college planning experience. Jariel shares what he learned during his time at MEFA, how he used the online tool MEFA Pathway to search for colleges, his experience at Cristo Rey HS, his journey on deciding what college to attend, and where he has decided to enroll. If you enjoy the MEFA Podcast, please leave us a review.
The MEFA Podcast
Episode #78. Host Jonathan Hughes talks with three students from Northeast Metropolitan Regional Professional School. They discuss the uniqueness of their specific high school, their process of applying for colleges, their struggles applying for financial aid, and what their advice is for future high school seniors. If you enjoy the MEFA Podcast, please leave us a review.
The MEFA Podcast
Episode #76. Host Jonathan Hughes talks with nursing student and current EMT Steven Tcheauafei about his journey figuring out what major was best for him. He talks about how becoming an EMT while in school directed his school choices, his thought process in transferring schools and changing majors, and how financial aid played a role in his decision-making. If you enjoy the MEFA Podcast, please leave us a review.
The MEFA Podcast
Episode #74. Host Jonathan Hughes talks with Dr. Rose Boulay of Springfield Promise, a program that helps Springfield Public School students graduate ready for college and careers. They discuss Springfield’s demographics, how Springfield Promise helps students and families, their strategies for working with different populations, and the challenges they have faced with FAFSA and financial aid this year. If you enjoy the MEFA Podcast, please leave us a review.
The MEFA Podcast
Episode #72. Host Jonathan Hughes and co-host Julie Shields-Rutyna share highlights from MEFA’s webinar that outlined six keys to finding a good college fit, which was presented by Dr. Timothy Poynton and Dr. Amanda Sterk. They share clips of the presenters reviewing those six keys, how to best research colleges, and how to decide what college will be the best for your academic experience. Highlights also include discussion of the book they wrote, a college fit tool they built, and much more. Finally, Jonathan and Julie go to the MEFA Mailbag and answer a FAFSA question. If you enjoy the MEFA Podcast, please leave us a review.
The MEFA Podcast
Episode #71. Host Jonathan Hughes talks with Vice President for Undergraduate Enrollment at Regis College, Christopher Lydon, about Direct Admissions, a process in which students are admitted to colleges without applying to them They discuss how it works, which students are chosen, what the benefits are, and why it could become a standard part of college admissions. If you enjoy the MEFA Podcast, please leave us a review.