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Feeling lost and breaking down

Kelvin82Kelvin82 Registered User Posts: 305 Member
Hello everyone. I'm just another junior in a sea of juniors fretting over college. I feel so lost. I am visually impaired, first generation, and low income. My unweighted GPA is 3.83, and my weighted GPA is 4.46. Also, my GPA shows a downward trend. Compared to my peers who have near flawless academic records and are relatively well off, I feel like the odds are stacked against me.

I live in California, and I will apply to some UCs (I feel I will be rejected because of the downward trend in my GPA, and the UCs only use sophomore and junior year GPAs, but it can't hurt to apply, can it?)

However, I am in desperate need of financial aid, and I know that the UCs will not meet my full need.

Does anyone have any suggestions on what colleges I could apply to?
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Replies to: Feeling lost and breaking down

  • DustyfeathersDustyfeathers Registered User Posts: 2,269 Senior Member
    Your GPA is not that bad, IMHO. You could try UC Santa Cruz
  • GumbymomGumbymom Registered User Posts: 19,698 Senior Member
    OP, I would plug in your family's income into the Net Price calculators on some of the UC and Cal State websites to get an idea of your approximate costs. UC's and some Cal States can be very generous with need-based aid for in-state students so it is definitely worth your time to run some numbers before striking many good schools off your list.

    Have you calculated your UC GPA? https://rogerhub.com/gpa-calculator-uc/

    http://www2.ucsc.edu/finaidcalc/
  • MYOS1634MYOS1634 Registered User Posts: 31,939 Senior Member
    If you're lower income, the UC's will cover a lot. They will expect you to take on loans and to work the summer before. But they'll cover a lot.
    Do our know your EFC?
    Are putting Pell eligible?
    Have you taken the sat?
    Look at Pomona, Pitzer, Occidental, Reed . Those are very different and 'meet need'.
    Check out accommodations for your disability, as it'll likely vary college to college. Ask the AFB as they may have suggestions.
    Depending on your test scores, you could apply through questridge. If Pinterest selected, you're guaranteed a full ride.
  • OttermaOtterma Registered User Posts: 1,051 Senior Member
    edited February 11
    What is your UC GPA? Depending on your area of interest, one of the top Cal States might be better fits for you...and less expensive. Smart and focused kids in California routinely turn down UC acceptances to attend Cal Poly, SJSU, or SDSU.

    But absolutely check out Questbridge too (lol at @MYOS1634 's autocorrect).
  • OttermaOtterma Registered User Posts: 1,051 Senior Member
    ^^^Thanks. I didn't realize that.
  • MYOS1634MYOS1634 Registered User Posts: 31,939 Senior Member
    edited February 11
    ^Well, it depends how low-income the student is, because the CSU's are lower cost than the UC's to start with. But if OP is admitted to a CSU where s/he can't commute and can't afford the R/B fees there'd be no state grant or CSU grant to cover that (as far as I know). Whereas if OP is middle income, CSu's would be a good option, and of course if OP's parents make more than 100K they'd be cheaper than UC's. I hope OP comes back and tells us his/her EFC and parents' income so that we know what kind of income bracket we're talking about. :/
  • Kelvin82Kelvin82 Registered User Posts: 305 Member
    edited February 11
    @MYOS1634 My parent makes far far below 100K, around 20K or so. I am Pell Grant eligible. I do plan on applying to a local CSU, where I can commute to there and it's an academic safety for me. I did look into Pomona and Scripps and Harvey Mudd, and really liked Harvey Mudd. Also, I've looked at some LACs on the east coast, and liked Colby College and Wellesley. I'm Asian and first generation, would those two factors be slight hooks for me if I'm applying to LACs, such as Colby or Bates?

    @Dustyfeathers Thank you for your suggestion of UCSC. I ran its NPC, and found that I have to take 11K in loans.

    @Gumbymom thank you for your links!
    My UC unweighted GPA is 3.75.
    My UC weighted and capped is 4.08.
    My UC weighted and uncapped is 4.42.

    @lindagaf thank you for mentioning questbridge. As a matter of fact, I want to apply for its College Prep program, and have been looking into its College Match program. Also, my counselor mentioned a program called Phoenix Scholars, where college students help mentor low income high school students. Since it's only for high school students in California, I was thinking of applying for that. You are absolutely right that I have to stop feeling sorry for myself. Thank you for that reminder.
  • hophop Registered User Posts: 751 Member
    You'll also be eligible for Cal Grants, which is based on a formula of GPA and need.
    http://www.csac.ca.gov/doc.asp?id=905

    Award amounts vary by type of college — for 2016-2017, Cal Grants are up to $12,240 at a UC campus,
    up to $5,472 at a CSU campus, and up to $9,084 at independent colleges.

    As someone mentioned above, the CSU might be a better academic fit, depending on your major.
    Try not to compare yourself to your classmates, as based on the numbers you've reported, your academic performance stands up on its own. You should feel good about what you've accomplished.

    Something else to note is that for ALL of the UC's, housing is only assured for the first year.
    After that you're on your own.
    Depending on the area, the housing costs could have a negative impact.
    For either the UC's or CSU's, be sure to check into being an RA after your freshman year.
  • aquaptaquapt Registered User Posts: 243 Junior Member
    @Kelvin82 , do you know what you want to study?
  • Kelvin82Kelvin82 Registered User Posts: 305 Member
    @aquapt at this point, I'm not sure yet. But, I'm leaning towards something in STEM or economics
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