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You should check your state's tax laws. Indiana gives you a 20% *credit* for putting up to $5K into a 529. By funding a 529 from the state-approved source, you can give yourself $1000 off your state income taxes. If NC does anything like that, the 529 is a big plus, even if you combine one with a Coverdell.

Apply for all possible scholarships. When one of my kids graduated, the local Coke bottling company gave $500 for four areas: Math, Arts and two others. They only awarded three that year because nobody even applied for the Arts one. I couldn't help but notice that several kids were going to such-and-such college to study Art or Music (which is one of the Fine Arts). My local alumni group offers a scholarship to our (out of state) school, which some years goes unclaimed because nobody applies despite the college matching (so our $600 turns into $1200 for the student). One year we awarded it to a B+ student with a ton of extracurricular activities, so you don't have to be a 4.0 class president and science fair winner to get money.
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