College Preparation Nightmares

Dear AIEmail,
My zombie friends tell me the best way to learn more is by eating brains. I'm skeptical, because the brain-eating zombies I know don't seem very smart. I'd rather just go to college, but I'm afraid I won't be able to pay for it. What should I do?

Scared in Scranton

Dear Scared,
Actually, there are lots of options available to help you pay for college. An important first step is to fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), which can help you find out about qualifying for student aid. Learn more here (

Dear AIEmail,

I'm worried that my guidance counselor has mystical powers. Not long after she predicted that my composition skills would come in handy, I was required to write an essay as part of a college application! Now I'm paying careful attention to her other predictions, such as her view that I will suffer bad fortune if I procrastinate filling out the FAFSA. What's your view?

Worried in Waco

Dear Worried,
I predict... that you will feel silly when you realize that your counselor based that judgment on fact rather than magic. A lot of financial aid funding is awarded first come, first served, based on availability! That's why the advice to fill out the FAFSA right away is good advice.

Dear AIEmail,
A witch gave me a potion that she claimed would help me get into college. I drank it, but I think it was just pop rocks. Now I worry I'll never get in. Can you help?

Anxious in Albuquerque

Dear Anxious,
No need to resort to supernatural (or super sugary) potions. You can seriously affect your chances of being accepted to a good college by following some tried and true strategies, listed here (