slightly off-topic about the candidate's choice application
Do we find out our decision earlier? I know it says you get your financial aid stuff earlier but it says nothing about the actual decision. And on the application itself it only has spots for ED and RD but I vaguely remember seeing somewhere that Medalists (which I am) get to apply EA.
DD also has been notified that she is eligible for the candidate's choice application. So far, I have not found any real benefit to us (please point out why I am wrong). The fees are the same, the dates and notifications appear to be the same and DD will not qualify for any financial aid. Filling out the candidate's choice application may be smaller than the common app but we are already filling out the common app due to all the other common app schools. So regardless of how easy, it is still additional work. Would be more than willing to suggest DD uses CC instead of CA if it makes sense.
lavieboheme - Is that true that Medalists get to do EA? Last year's medalist applicant did submit applications to other schools after being accepted by RPI in the fall. When I asked about this possibility at admissions I was told (rightly or wrongly) that that was not allowed. I know the medalist believed that he could.
It used to be RPI medalists were the only candidates allowed Early Action vs ED in the fall. This changed last year. It benefited our daughter who was a medalist, she didn't have to play the apply to 8 schools game once she had RPI in her pocket.
But RPI has become more competitive and last year they changed it so there was ED1 in the fall, ED2 in the winter and RD in the spring, all committed. No exceptions were made for medalists like my son.
Given how RPI has been over enrolled the last few years, their changes make perfect sense for them, though not as convenient for RPI medalists. The ED2 makes good sense for those rejected by their reach school ED but doesn't help those referred to RD by the reach schools.
The candidates choice was convenient for my son, he only applied to two schools, and neither were common app. Had we known how competitive RPI got last year, we might have applied to more. (With the medalist scholarship, few schools could compete). It all worked out great though.
Yeah I just received today in my e-mail. I got a little bit excited because I actually thought I was selected among a group of people for this streamlined application. I wasn't going to apply to RPI because I don't really have the grades (people from my school have gotten accept with a 3.8+, which I don't have). So I was excited, but then I went to their website to actually see if I was special or not, but it says "Students may also apply via the Candidate’s Choice Application. This streamlined application is available to students who have expressed an interest in Rensselaer." So the only reason why I got it was because I was on their mailing list and toured the school. I still have no chance of getting in!
There are actually application fee waivers available for those who qualify. Excerpt from RPI's web site:
Fee Waiver Eligibility & Instructions
If your total family income is $60,000 or less, and the application fee presents a hardship for you and your family, you may qualify for a fee waiver. To request a fee waiver, ask your high school guidance counselor, principal, or other school official to fill out the SAT Request for Waiver of College Application Fee form or to submit an official letter on your behalf. You may assume the waiver has been granted unless you hear otherwise from us.
The form, or official letter, should be mailed to:
Fee Waiver Request
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
110 8th Street
Troy, NY 12180-3590
Unfortunately, this offer is not quite as generous as last year's. When I applied, the SAT Request for Waiver form wasn't required (I simply e-mailed my request), and the total family income was $100,000, not $60,000. Still worth looking into if you qualify, however.
Unless you specifically sign something otherwise (never heard of this happening) Regular Decision (RD) is always nonbinding. Your applications to RD schools are completely independent of each other up until you decide where you want to go (at which point you, obviously, reject all the rest). You can think of the Candidates Choice Application as a form of an RD application.
Early Decision (not to be confused with Early Action, which is effectively an earlier-notification version of RD), on the other hand, is a binding agreement. If you get accepted to a school where you applied Early Decision, that's where you'll end up attending.
Note that some schools might not have different application types, so it's good to check everything in advance.
My daughter found the "Candidate's Choice" application easier to complete than the common app. She is also a medalist, and applied to RPI early decision. Getting the acceptance letter, together with the financial package early helped her, since she could then concentrate on applications for additional scholarships. RPI gave her a very generous merit scholarship, but she has been able to bring down costs even further through the award of an outside scholarship ($5000). With outside scholarships, the more that you complete, the better your chances of snagging at least one, as long as you have the grades, test scores, and extracurriculars.