About Us

Since 1999, the National Center for College Costs has provided individualized programs and services that help students and parents prepare for college of all kinds. We design our programs to complement the work traditionally done by guidance counselors and others who work with students as they prepare for higher education.

Our unique programming approach features two main goals:

  • To reach large volumes of students and parents on certain key college preparatory issues that otherwise might prevent students from attending and/or successfully transitioning to postsecondary education; and
  • To create a culture of “college for all” by raising the expectations and readiness of students, their parents and others who support them.

We work closely with school and community resources to provide an extensive framework of services to entire communities of students. This approach allows us to provide expert advice on critical issues in time and cost-effective ways.

Led by President Dave Murray, the National Center for College Costs (NCCC) staff draws from a wide range of talents and expertise to help students and families plan and prepare for the often confusing and complicated processes of college admission, financial aid, and college transition. Our ultimate goal? To educate families across the socioeconomic spectrum that college is an option they can afford and to empower them in a way that helps them succeed in attaining a degree.

Staff Members

Dave Murray, President:

Dave Murray, president of the National Center for College Costs, has been working with students and families on college admissions and financial aid issues for more than 30 years. Before starting NCCC, Murray worked at three universities. Most recently he was DePauw's Dean of Admission and Associate Provost, then the Executive Director of nationally recognized Lilly Endowment-funded programs created to increase the college-bound rate at targeted Indiana schools.

Murray is a national figure in college admissions, financial aid and enrollment management circles. The college selection materials and workshops he designed have been featured in a wide variety of media. Additionally, under his leadership the DePauw admission program was the subject of MacNeil/Lehrer and U.S. News and World Report studies of a top private college admission program. Back to the top

Sue Murray, Vice President

With her husband, Dave and her daughter, Molly Yuska, Sue is a co-founder of the National Center for College Costs. Herself a first-generation college student, Sue’s interest in helping our client families  is no surprise since she spent 25 years as Director of Social Services at Putnam County Hospital; served as President of the Putnam County Community Foundation and started its Youth Philanthropy Program; and served as President of the Greencastle City Council and Mayor of the City of Greencastle. She also has served for many years on the board of Comprehensive Services, the local service for its developmentally and emotionally disabled adults. Back to the top

Becca Moore, Senior Associate Consultant:

Becca has worked as an Associate Consultant since 2001. In addition to consulting at NCCC, she is also Senior Associate Director of Admission at DePauw University.  While at DePauw, she served as a member of the University's admission staff as well as the Associate Director of the McDermond Center for Management and Entrepreneurship, home of the well-respected Management Fellows Program, an honors business program at DePauw. Becca has also shared her talent and expertise with the Greencastle Community School Corporation by serving on the District's Curriculum Committee as well as the Gifted and Talented Broad-Based Planning Committee. Back to the top

Bryan Murray, Senior Associate Consultant:

Bryan is a 1996 graduate of DePauw University. He spent 11 years teaching and 10 years coaching the varsity women's soccer program at Muncie Central High School in Muncie, Indiana, a diverse educational setting where many racial and socioeconomic backgrounds unite.

Bryan says this experience helped prepare him for the diversity with which he now works. NCCC is taking advantage of his teaching and motivational strategies in the financial and educational arenas throughout Indiana in particular. Bryan also worked on the Lilly Endowment grant project at DePauw University years ago that eventually lead to the creation of NCCC. Back to the top

Janice Fry, Scholarship Screening Report Coordinator & Data Specialist:

Janice Fry has almost two decades of experience working with the data systems that drive the financial calculations integral to the National Center for College Costs. In addition to her experiences at NCCC and a variety of other settings, Janice has a thorough knowledge of the federal formula, making her a great resource for families as they complete the College Costs Estimator program. She also takes college access and community issues seriously and personally. She was the driving force behind the North Putnam High School Dollars for scholars chapter, a grassroots scholarship fundraising program. She also serves on the board of directors for Putnam County Hospital. Back to the top

Karen Heavin, Consultant & Data Specialist

Karen’s interest in financial aid began as a four-year work study student in the Franklin College Financial Aid Office during her undergraduate days there. She came to the NCCC from the local Area 30 Career Center where she taught College & Career Development. She has served as the chairperson of the Putnam County Community Foundation’s Lilly Endowment Scholarship Committee, and she continues to serve as a member of the Putnam County Scholarship Taskforce. We welcome Karen’s passion for sharing her knowledge and experience with students and families to meet their educational goals, and preparing students for leadership, communication and personal development skills. Back to the top

Vince Aguirre, Project Manager

Vince Aguirre is the Project Manager for the National Center for College Costs’ Net Price Calculator and Indiana College Costs Estimator tools. Vince also is the founder and President of 25/7 Consulting, a company focused on delivering consulting and technical expertise to small businesses and entrepreneurs. Vince is a 2012 graduate of DePauw University where he was chosen as a Posse Scholar for his academic  and leadership potential. Vince also has been accepted as a member of the Emerging Leaders Project, a leadership and networking program. Back to the top

Associate Consultants

Laurie Dickerson, Associate Consultant: Laurie has spent the last 20+ years helping students
prepare for life after high school. She is the iGrad Director for Ivy Tech Community College in
Columbus. iGrad is a program that identifies and works with students in grades 8-12 to
increase graduation rates and prepare students for postsecondary education. Prior to coming to
the iGrad program, Laurie spent 15 years working with the State and the Commission for Higher
Education as the Outreach Coordinator for the 21st Century Scholars program. While serving
15 counties, she was responsible for collaborating with local community based organizations,
the College Success Coalitions and the local school corporations to help with student
recruitment efforts, the college success initiatives, College Goal Sunday and filing the FAFSA.
Laurie has also been a consultant for IYI (Indiana Youth Institute) and serves on several
committees in the communities. She currently is Chair of the Education Committee for the
Financial Literacy Coalition of Bartholomew County. She attended Ball State University. Laurie
brings years of experience to the table from the public, private and Government sectors of
work. Back to the top

Grant Tharp, Associate Consultant: 

Grant brings over 12 years of relevant experience and a great skill set to the National Center for College Costs staff. He has admission and financial aid experience, having developed relationships with a wide and diverse range of high schools and colleges across the U.S. He also has worked in the student loan and higher education software fields, work that provided families with tools to aid in the college admissions process, increased web traffic, use of e-transcripts, and a host of other technological tools that aid college access and increase college retention and graduation rates. Among his many civic engagements, Grant served as the Executive Director of the Montgomery County Leadership Academy in Crawfordsville, Indiana. Grant has counseled many, many families in finding the right college choice for their child focusing on academics, cost and atmosphere.Back to the top

R. Duane Emery, Associate Consultant: Duane brings a rich array of experience to the National Center for College Costs. Currently, Duane is Vice President for Enrollment Management at Cathedral High School in Indianapolis. Previous posts include serving as College Counselor at Cathedral, Director of Admission at St. Richard's School in Indianapolis, admission counselor experience at two selective universities, as well as business experience. Duane was a faculty member more than once at DePauw University's Planning for College Institutes for high school students funded by the Lilly Endowment. His fluency in Spanish is helpful in working with our diverse client families. Back to the top

Linda Christy, Associate Consultant: Since graduating from DePauw University in 1988, Linda has served roles in both the high school and college sectors. She worked in admissions for both private and public colleges for eleven years before making the move to the high school side, where she was director of college advising at Cathedral High School. She currently serves as the Director of College Counseling at the International School of Indiana. Linda was asked to serve on the Indiana Advisory Council for the College Board, which is comprised of 12 professionals in education throughout the state of Indiana. Back to the top

Brandy Perrill, Associate Consultant: Brandy has her B.S. in Aeronautical Engineering Technology from Purdue University. Brandy served for three years as Career Counselor for the Interlocal Association where she oversaw Hendricks County’s IMPACT provider program for public assistance recipients. Subsequently she joined the Hendricks College Network as Student Services Director she now serves as the Network’s Executive Director. Now add the fact that she volunteered her time for several years as a part of the FAFSA Days we staff during the month of February. You can begin to get a feel for her passion about our kind of work and why we asked her to join our Associate Consultant staff. Back to the top


Joanne Haymaker, Senior Associate Consultant: A graduate of the University of Illinois, Joanne served as Associate Director of Financial Aid at DePauw University for 28 years. In demand each year as a speaker at high school financial aid nights, Joanne was on the leading edge of the establishment of Indiana’s College Goal Sunday program that helps students and their families file a Free Applications for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). She has helped plan state financial aid conferences and chaired state-level financial aid committees. On a personal note she has been President of the Greencastle Civic League, the local Kiwanis and was a driving force behind the organization that has resulted in Greencastle being recognized each year as a national Tree City of the Year for over a decade now. She brings passion and a wealth of knowledge and experience to everything she does, including her work here. Back to the top

Contact the National Center for College Costs today to learn how you or your organization can provide our services to students, parents and educators in your community.