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@Mimi2018 - total time, including contact hours (i.e. time in studio and classroom). Keep in mind that contact hours in a BFA program might be 1.5 - 2X the amount for a typical BA program. The BFA is a professional degree so the training is intense. You can get an idea of that just by comparing the number of credits needed to graduate with a BFA at a university program vs. a BA. The BFA should require a notably higher number of credits.
@Shrmpngrtz thanks for the tip re: routers. That was also the policy in my older daughter's dorm LOL (another school). When they got there they found that everyone had installed a personal router. When in Rome (or, in her case, NYC . . . . ).
We'll have to look into this more thoroughly once summer hits.
They definitely are subject to change. Anyone offered a scholarship / scholarship package obviously would be grandfathered in under the terms in place so no worries there. However, any student considering a college or university on that list might want to check to ensure that the terms won't change for their incoming class. It's actually best to check directly with the college/university rather than rely on the website or ask NMSC, as terms can actually change during the application cycle!
A great example is UChicago who, for the past several years (and certainly for the class of 2020), guaranteed $4,000 per year to accepted NMF's whether or not you received anything from NMSC (corporate, UChicago college-sponsored, or NMSC one-time $2500). If you received NOTHING from NMSC, UChicago offered you the entire $4,000. If you received something, UChicago made up the dif. Whether that scholarship program stacked with other merit or need-based aid, I don't know, but that was the plan presumably in place when my daughter applied, as we had checked the terms on their website around the time she was named NMSF.
Well, it turns out that was NOT the plan in place. Sometime this academic year they changed the terms so that incoming NMF's would receive no more than what NMSC directly gives out, if anything. My daughter just received the $2,000 yearly college-sponsored stipend. She's happy, of course - except that when she applied we budgeted for a $4,000 stipend in the event of admission (UChicago isn't exactly cheap so every little bit helps). An $8,000 difference is not a lot in the scheme of things, esp. when you look at their COA. It will mean that she's more on the hook for summer employment and work-study than she would have been. UChicago is great about both these things (they pay their students to get an internship!), so we are hoping it all works out.
Any school is free to change the terms from year to year and it's to be expected that a few will each year. The timing of the UChicago change, however, was a bit of a surprise as the old info. was on the website till we checked again in early 2017. As my daughter was not admitted till one of the later admit dates, she wouldn't have been expecting a notice of merit aid before spring 2017 and I wasn't in the habit of checking the website to ensure that scholarship info. wasn't going to "disappear" (seriously, who would have thought that could be the case???). The lack of notice one way or the other through April was a bit disconcerting and families had to call to get confirmation that, indeed, they had discontinued providing their own merit aid to NMF's. When a school changes the terms, they don't seem to be very forthcoming.
Moral of the story: Unless you are crystal clear on what will be offered you/your student, call to get that clarification. Better yet, e-mail. Get on record that you are requesting confirmation/clarification concerning the school's NM scholarship policy in event of admission. It sounds silly to advise this but you should probably NOT trust the school's website. Many schools, by the way, will not change their policies - they definitely are courting NMF's and will send you marketing material or mention the benefits when you tour as an NMSF. And, of course, anything offered with your acceptance is good. Once in a while, however, a school will drop or alter its program and not really mention it. So if there is any doubt, be proactive and check with them.