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GradGuard's college search engine makes it easy for college families to protect their students and investment from the risks of college life.
By John Fees on May 1, 2019

John Fees

John Fees is the Co-Founder and Managing Director of GradGuard™. Fees is a graduate of Arizona State University, where he received a bachelors of science degree in History and is also a graduate of Harvard Business School where he completed a Masters in Business Administration. John Fees lives in Phoenix, Arizona and is married to Melissa Soza Fees, Ph.D. and is the father of five children. He is the Treasurer for the Arizona College Success Arizona, a Director of College Parents of America, Founding Director and investor in Tonto Creek Camp which provides service leadership experiences to 8,000 students annually. He is also an active member of University Risk Management and Insurance Association and the Professional Insurance Marketers Association.


GradGuard's search tool makes it easy for college families to protect their students and investment from the risks of college life.

Phoenix, Arizona, May 1, 2019 - May 1st turns the page for millions of high school graduates who have selected the college or university where they are confident they will complete their degree.  With slightly more than half of the students who start college completing their degree in six-years, college families are smart to take steps to prepare to overcome risks that could disrupt their education.

Paying for college is often the second largest investment college families make. As a result, John Fees, co-founder of GradGuard, an authority on college risks that works closely with more than 300 colleges and universities, recommends the following smart tips:

  • What is Your College Refund Policy? If your student has to withdraw from college due to a serious illness, injury or accident, it is unlikely that you will receive a 100% refund.  Only 16% of schools surveyed provide 100% refunds of tuition, and virtually no schools will refund the cost of academic fees, room, and board. Tuition insurance can provide a refund, however, when schools do not.  If you cannot afford the cost of an extra college semester, then it is essential to purchase tuition insurance coverage prior to the start of classes. Coverage must be purchased prior to the start of classes and begins at $33.75 for $2,500 of coverage per term.
  • Will Your Health Insurance Coverage Work? Many colleges offer health insurance plans to students and require them to purchase or opt out by showing proof of alternative insurance. According to the American College Health Association, about 10 percent of students get their health insurance through their school.  A college health insurance plan may make sense for some students, but if you have family health insurance, your college student can remain on a parents’ plan until the age of 26.  Be sure to confirm the requirements to use your student campus health clinic, and be sure not to pay twice for coverage.


  • What Are Risks of Living on Campus?  For many of the nearly three-million students who live in student housing, this is the first time they are living independently. With an average of 2,000 fires reported annually within on-campus housing by Clery Act safety reports and 69,502 property crimes reported in FBI Uniform Crime Reports, the risks are real. Though some parents may have coverage through homeowners insurance, it may not be practical due to coverage limits, high deductibles and increases to the cost of your insurance if you file a claim. For about $.50 cents a day, GradGuard’s college renters insurance contains an exclusive student endorsement that provides a low-deductible and coverage designed for college life making it a must-have consideration for college families.

Renters_on_campus_fire_trendsFees continued, “College families are smart to protect their investment from the risks of college life. To make it easier to find the insurance programs that are right for your college student or recommended by your institution, start with GradGuard’s college insurance search tool at”



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