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Old 10-07-2012, 08:11 PM   #61
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Originally Posted by LisaR View Post
Amazing how quickly things change. I told my daughter that it was all her fault for not being born a few years earlier.
Kendall and I were talking about it today. She was saying how lucky she was to attend college when she did. The tuition is much higher now as opposed to when she started college and scholarships are harder to get. Then, I told her how my tuition for college was about $250 a semester. Yes, things have really changed! Of course, I went to college in the dark ages!
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Old 10-07-2012, 09:10 PM   #62
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I personally got a full merit ride from my state but that was aeons ago - I'm in my 40s so I don't think my scores or activities are 100% relative. I will say I was a total GEEK

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All I can say, is if either of my kids get a full ride at a university, they better think long and hard about turning that down. We are already having this discussion even though they are in middle school, since two kids in the last graduating class did just that, turned down full rides at schools because they didn't want to go to THAT school. The only reason I could completely understand is that their area of study was not offered at that particular school. My oldest DD wants a biology degree, I am assuming that is fairly generic. She will need a masters for her real interest of study and can be more picky once she reaches that level.

I'm not trying to be critical, for the families that did NOT go with the full ride, what was the reason? Again, no criticism, just trying to prepare myself since that time will be here before I know it!
I did turn down the full ride. It was based upon SAT scores (Top 50 scores in the state) and they had to wait until all SAT scores for the year had been generated for my graduating class. As a result the scholarship award came in late July, well after I had graduated and had already decided to go to a private college. Although I could have switch to a state university because the scholarship notification arrived so late the state universities/colleges I had applied to had already done their course selections which meant in order to get in all my major courses I was going to have to go to school for 5 years and the scholarship was only good for 4 years.
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Old 10-07-2012, 10:29 PM   #63
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Among the greatest things that ever happened to me:
http://www.princeton.edu/admission/w...d_without_loa/
They mean it. They exclude home equity, IRAs and 401(k)s in the calculation.
I graduated in 2002 with no loans thanks to this. (Single mother, two younger siblings).
Don't get too cynical. It does happen.
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Old 10-08-2012, 01:48 PM   #64
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Among the greatest things that ever happened to me:
http://www.princeton.edu/admission/w...d_without_loa/
They mean it. They exclude home equity, IRAs and 401(k)s in the calculation.
I graduated in 2002 with no loans thanks to this. (Single mother, two younger siblings).
Don't get too cynical. It does happen.
It certainly does happen but I'm still cynical. I think the single mother aspect was the main factor in your loan-free education.

According to Princeton, we are able to afford the entire $58,000 per year!

I manipulated the numbers a bit and the best I came up with was $28,000 between work and grants. That still leaves $30,000 per year or $120,000 for a four year degree.
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Old 10-08-2012, 01:52 PM   #65
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Yes, financial aid still exists and awards for smart students with finanical need are our there.

Merit aid is getting harder to come by. Doesn't mean it doesn't exist, but many opportunities that were around a few years ago simply aren't available any longer.
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Old 10-08-2012, 02:03 PM   #66
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It certainly does happen but I'm still cynical. I think the single mother aspect was the main factor in your loan-free education.

According to Princeton, we are able to afford the entire $58,000 per year!

I manipulated the numbers a bit and the best I came up with was $28,000 between work and grants. That still leaves $30,000 per year or $120,000 for a four year degree.
I disagree on the single mother aspect. We are married, with double incomes and only one DS14. I did the net cost calculator and our family contribution is $4080. $2500 from us(parents) and $1580 from DS.
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Old 10-08-2012, 02:15 PM   #67
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I disagree on the single mother aspect. We are married, with double incomes and only one DS14. I did the net cost calculator and our family contribution is $4080. $2500 from us(parents) and $1580 from DS.
That's wonderful, but....if these figures are for Princeton or really any school that uses the CSS/Profile form in addition to the FAFSA, just be aware that the NPC may not be totally accurate. The Profile form uses the equity in your house, assesses any businesses or rental property you may have, and I think, although I'm not certain, that they may look at your retirement funds. I can't recall. They dig way down deep into your finances, and the calculators are just an estimate. For some people, they're pretty accurate; for others, not so much.

That said, I have seen Caradana post on here several times over the years on how incredibly grateful she is for the opportunity to attend Princeton. Yeah, you! For anyone who can get in, the benefits are huge. Unfortunately, it is somewhat of a crapshoot these days on who gets in. Many qualified applicants, and only so many spaces. I was shocked to learn that the Ivies turn down kids with PERFECT SAT scores every year.
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Old 10-08-2012, 02:54 PM   #68
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I disagree on the single mother aspect. We are married, with double incomes and only one DS14. I did the net cost calculator and our family contribution is $4080. $2500 from us(parents) and $1580 from DS.
I meant in that particular person's case. I certainly don't think that only single mothers qualify.

I am very happy that Princeton has this option, but the reality is, this has everything to do with financial aid and nothing to do with merit. DD worked her butt off (like so many others) to get a very good ACT score, top notch GPA, hardest classes offered, volunteered hundreds of hours, and was actively involved in multiple activities. No regrets. She is very well rounded. However, I once thought all of that would be good enough for a free ride but that isn't the case at all.

If I was the parent of a young child now, I would take warning. Maybe things will improve when that young child is ready for college but they may not. Those days of assuming your kid will get a huge merit scholarship if they do well seem to have slipped away.
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Old 10-15-2012, 09:20 AM   #69
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If I was the parent of a young child now, I would take warning. Maybe things will improve when that young child is ready for college but they may not. Those days of assuming your kid will get a huge merit scholarship if they do well seem to have slipped away.
Saving as if you're going to receive nothing has always been good advice -- even back in the "good old days" of 5-6 years ago, everyone didn't receive scholarships. Most of our students are average.

If you over-save, you can always use that money for something else; but if you under-save, it's tough to scramble about and figure out what to do. Speaking only for our family, we were prepared to pay the whole thing, and we're thrilled that roughly 2/3 is taken care of for us.
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Old 10-15-2012, 10:37 AM   #70
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Saving as if you're going to receive nothing has always been good advice -- even back in the "good old days" of 5-6 years ago, everyone didn't receive scholarships. Most of our students are average.

If you over-save, you can always use that money for something else; but if you under-save, it's tough to scramble about and figure out what to do. Speaking only for our family, we were prepared to pay the whole thing, and we're thrilled that roughly 2/3 is taken care of for us.
Oh, I agree. But I see posts on here all the time that say all their 3 year old needs to do is work hard in high school and they will receive money. There may have been a time when working really hard/being on top would get you a large sum of money. Now, even some of the top students aren't receiving much. Thankfully, we've never counted on scholarship money.
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Old 10-15-2012, 11:41 AM   #71
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I don't have any kids in college yet, but my dh had a full ride college scholarship and part of his job is to administer a college scholarship program. Both dh's scholarship and the one he works with is for future teachers (and requires graduates to teach at least 4 years in a public school system after they complete their program).

Unfortunately he has seen a lot of funding for his scholarship program and many other programs disappear over the last several years. He is working on getting his current students through their four years and is no longer accepting new students because of the lack of funding.

Dh says full ride scholarships are quickly becoming scarce and a lot depends on individual colleges and the student's major. Just to get accepted at the better schools these days requires a near perfect grade point average and high SAT/ACT score. Colleges have become much more competitive over the last 10 - 20 years.
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Old 10-15-2012, 12:53 PM   #72
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Kalamazoo Promise

Yes, my kids will have a full ride for tuition. We live in Kalamazoo Michigan. My childern will attend Kalamazoo Public Schools for their whole school career. Upon graduation they can attend any public university, trade school or community college in The State of Michigan with tuition paid for 4 years. Many of the schools are also offering incentives for the students because they know that the graduates have the money to attend and want the $.

Both DH & I are Kalamazoo Public School Graduates and choose to buy a home in the district for our family prior to The Promise being announced. We see this as a huge blessing and "reward" for being loyal to our district.

https://www.kalamazoopromise.com/
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Old 10-15-2012, 01:20 PM   #73
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That is amazing about the Kalamazoo Promise. Had I known...sounds like you planned well.
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Old 10-15-2012, 01:29 PM   #74
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Yes, my kids will have a full ride for tuition. We live in Kalamazoo Michigan. My childern will attend Kalamazoo Public Schools for their whole school career. Upon graduation they can attend any public university, trade school or community college in The State of Michigan with tuition paid for 4 years. Many of the schools are also offering incentives for the students because they know that the graduates have the money to attend and want the $.

Both DH & I are Kalamazoo Public School Graduates and choose to buy a home in the district for our family prior to The Promise being announced. We see this as a huge blessing and "reward" for being loyal to our district.

https://www.kalamazoopromise.com/
Wow! What an amazing program. Not sure my husband would have been up for the 1,300 mile commute.

It looks like there are a few other places that have some type of "Promise" program. The couple I found have a lot more stipulations than Kalamazoo. Most require a certain GPA and volunteer hours. Kalamazoo gives it to anyone that goes to one of their public high schools for all four years no matter their grades.

In their FAQ, it asks, "Who are the donors." The answer is "A small group of VERY NICE people." They aren't kidding!
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Old 10-15-2012, 02:45 PM   #75
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I'd love to hear from people whose kids got full rides to college.

Public or private?

SAT and or ACT scores

Class Rank

Extra-Curricular activities


What do you think was the biggest factor in your child receiving a full ride?
How does your children feel about the military? I joined the Coast Guard Reserves and used the Tuition Assistance (TA) to help pay for college. TA covered most of the tuition + mandatory fees at University of Maryland.
Usually the initial reserve enlistment is for 6 years. So, if your child only joined for the college money, then he/she doesn't have to stay in that long after graduating. There are quite a few people that have joined for the 6 years and got out. There is nothing wrong in using the benefits that Uncle Sam gives us and then getting out.

The Coast Guard has very few reservist sent to war zones / overseas and usually those people choose to go.
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