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Include TCNJ or not?

MACmiracleMACmiracle Registered User Posts: 1,520 Senior Member
This is the super whittled down list I will give to D based on our finances and her interests. All the schools have a good possibility of getting under $20K per year, except for the small group that would require competitive scholarship participation. They all fit into the category of safeties.

St. Vincent College
DeSales University
Belmont Abbey College
University of Alabama Birmingham
University of Alabama Huntsville

Would need a MACmiracle in the form of a competitive scholarship for:

(Elizabethtown College) (love)
(Lycoming College)
(Mount St. Mary's University)
(Immaculata University)
(Lebanon Valley College)

Should I add TCNJ?

TCNJ would have an intellectual and social environment that I think would suit her better than anything else on her list.

It might give her better job prospects in our area if she goes directly into the workforce.

She'd get an excellent education.

It is also more expensive, but according to their website she might get more merit than I originally thought. I also found out she has a little more money in the 529 than I expected. The combo could make it work.

She'll also have no travel expenses.

As a last choice, she could live at home, but the commute would really stink.

Replies to: Include TCNJ or not?

  • gardenstategalgardenstategal Registered User Posts: 5,321 Senior Member
    It could not hurt to add it if it's a good fit and potentially affordable. Whether it is in the running next spring will depend on how her other acceptances and FA turn out.
  • fleishmo6fleishmo6 Registered User Posts: 574 Member
    definitely add it to the list.great reputation in the region
  • NJWrestlingmomNJWrestlingmom Registered User Posts: 995 Member
    It is a great school, but I can tell you that our Valedictorian got in there this year as a safety and was given $6,000 a year. We're in state, she had a 1400-something on the SAT and a 104 GPA, I think (somewhere in that range). By comparison, she got a free ride to Rutgers Honor College.

    I remember you from other threads - you're in PA, right? I too LOVED Lebanon Valley and Elizabethtown! Unfortunately, not enough to make it work, especially since my kid wants to be a teacher! If she's in the top 10% of her class, I was told LV gives 50% off tuition. A friend's kid at a very competitive local high school missed the top 10% but wrote an appeal letter and was granted the discount.

    From what I've seen, everyone who gets into Lycoming gets the $19,000 scholarship their website says is for a 3.0 or higher, whether they have a 3.0 or not! And they go up from there.
  • happy1happy1 Forum Champion Parents, Forum Champion Admissions Posts: 24,534 Forum Champion
    I'd include it but clearly let your D know upfront that her attending will be dependent on getting sufficient merit aid.. It seems worth a shot though.
  • MACmiracleMACmiracle Registered User Posts: 1,520 Senior Member
    edited May 2017
    @NJWrestlingmom We're in NJ so the price for TCNJ is around 28 or 29K if she lived in campus. $6K would make it doable, knowing we would save in other ways like health insurance.

    Lebanon Valley doesn't come down that low even with merit, but they have a handful of full-tuition awards. And it really does seem like a pretty campus with nurturing faculty.

    I think D would qualify for $24K at Lycoming and they have music scholarships. I think they promise to add on money to the scholarship if you go for an interview.

    And Elizabethtown is wonderful. They just really know what they are doing. My oldest just had amazing opportunities there. They have good merit and music scholarships.
  • MACmiracleMACmiracle Registered User Posts: 1,520 Senior Member
    @happy1 Thanks for your thoughts and you help in my other recent thread.

    My big reservation about TCNJ is that D doesn't want to go to a place where "everyone is smarter" and she "feels dumb." So that's a reason that she might not even consider it, even though she is their midrange for math and top 10% for reading.

    If she had to be in biology there, I'd probably not think it a realistic app or a suitable environment for her, but they have what she wants in a different department so more feasible IMO.
  • happy1happy1 Forum Champion Parents, Forum Champion Admissions Posts: 24,534 Forum Champion
    edited May 2017
    If she isn't interested in TCNJ it is fine to not apply. If you haven't visited TCNJ it may be worth going to see the school in the fall before you decide if it worth putting in an application. Fortunately it looks like you have a lot of other sound and affordable schools on your list.
  • MACmiracleMACmiracle Registered User Posts: 1,520 Senior Member
    Thanks, again, @happy1 . I'm relieved you think my list is "sound" because it's so unlike anyone else's here. :x

    We'll see what D adds and takes away, which won't happen until she gets through finals and finishes the year.
  • happy1happy1 Forum Champion Parents, Forum Champion Admissions Posts: 24,534 Forum Champion
    To be honest I'm not familiar with all of the schools on the list. But ultimately the list has to include schools that your D is happy with and that appear affordable. After that it becomes a matter of fit and personal preference.

    And yes, there is still a lot of time to finalize things (really she has through next December to add schools).

    Good luck.
  • MYOS1634MYOS1634 Registered User Posts: 41,530 Senior Member
    Do add TCNJ. It sounds like a great fit for your daughter
    Perhaps add Truman State, academically strong and includes automatic merit stackable with competitive merit.
    What about Mount Allison in Canada? It'd be in your price range and is a very strong LAC.
    What about Earlham?
    St Mary's in Indiana (Notre Dame's sister school, possibility to cross register for some classes); same thing for Goucher and JHU, Ithaca and Cornell so worth checking the NPC and the "merit scholarship" page in case it'd lower costs sufficiently.
  • ekdad212ekdad212 Registered User Posts: 171 Junior Member
    My daughter just finished her freshman year at TCNJ and she LOVES it. She graduated top 20 of her HS class of 300 and got $5K/yr merit aid from TCNJ. For teaching, business and bio, I think TCNJ is a great choice.

    I'm a little confused though. You say that TCNJ would have an intellectual environment that would suit her, but you also say that she may "feel dumb" there. I would say, if she applies and gets in, then she belongs there. My daughter clicked with a group of kids immediately that are "her people". Just regular smart, funny, kind kids.

    Someone else mentioned visiting campus. That is a great idea, but you should do it in the fall when it's filled with students, so that your daughter can feel if it's the right fit or not. Eat a meal at the dining hall. Go to the library and academic buildings. Decide after that.
  • MACmiracleMACmiracle Registered User Posts: 1,520 Senior Member
    @MYOS, Thanks for your suggestions. They aren't in the right affordability range, except Truman State and Mount Allison. The travel involved for those two is a little intimidating. Truman State does look very appealing.
  • MACmiracleMACmiracle Registered User Posts: 1,520 Senior Member
    @ekdad212 Thanks for sharing your experience with TCNJ. That's very helpful to know about the merit. I think my D is 9 out of about 300, I think. In terms of SATs, she should be in the top quarter at TCNJ. Maybe she has a chance for worthwhile merit.

    To try to clear up the confusion, she has said she'd feel most comfortable if she's among the top students, probably because of some insecurity but maybe also because she doesn't want an intensely competitive environment.

    So I've been looking at places where she'd be really top-top, but then I'm concerned about whether she'd get the best education possible. She's rather academic, likes learning for the joy of it.

    I like your description of the kids at TCNJ: regular, smart, funny, kind. I like to think that describes her.

    People talk about hipster, preppy, nerd in their search for a good fit. She's just a regular kid. Learning, playing music, involved in the community because she likes to.
  • MYOS1634MYOS1634 Registered User Posts: 41,530 Senior Member
    Mount Allison is a good choice, despite distance - is it reachable by plane? - since your daughter may get scholarships on top of the price already being low. Apply early enough to Truman State and your odds of knowing admission+scholarship amount increases.
    Have you run the NPC on Wooster, Beloit, and Earlham?
  • MACmiracleMACmiracle Registered User Posts: 1,520 Senior Member
    edited June 2017
    Wooster and Beloit, yes, though I might have to try-check Beloit. Earlham, no, because it didn't come up on lists of schools that have neuroscience.
This discussion has been closed.