It’s been known for a while that grandparents help their grandchildren to save and pay for college. But what is that role exactly? Little has been known before. For instance, in Sallie Mae’s How America Pays for College, grandparents are lumped into a category with friends and other relatives. In all, this group contributes 5%.


Such data tells us little about the role of grandparents. However, a new Fidelity Investments illuminates the generosity of grandparents when it comes to college savings.


In their new report, Fidelity discusses the percentage of families expecting contributions from grandparents and the average size of those contributions. It also discusses savings vehicles (not surprising, as it is a for-profit investment company). You can read the whole report here, but we suggest starting with the summary information first.