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Tips on finding an ideal price range for colleges when parents won't help?

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Replies to: Tips on finding an ideal price range for colleges when parents won't help?

  • culaccinoculaccino Registered User Posts: 105 Junior Member
    @mom2collegekids no, my dad is an engineer and my mom is a tech in a hospital.

    Hi everyone! My parent's estimate on 30-35K may be relatively tight compared to the tuition at some schools (although this is an ample amount, I know). However, my parents will definitely try to pay their EFC. My parents have always told me, "think education first, money second." As a result, what I'm more worried about is the lengths they'll take to ensure I go to a college that "fits" me. I know I'm lucky to have parents like them, and I value them greatly. The least I can do is apply to colleges that have a tuition closer to what they can pay (30,35K).

    This is why I asked CC--even if it's stretching money a little too tight, my parents wouldn't tell me that x amount of tuition is too much. Everyone's opinions here have helped me greatly on what is or isn't an expensive school, so thank you! I just wanted to say that the situation isn't as dire as people say, although I do appreciate the concern. Paying for college is nothing to laugh at.
  • NashvilletoTexasNashvilletoTexas Registered User Posts: 146 Junior Member
    As some have said, your parents EFC may mean free tuition at some top competitive schools, so go ahead and apply to some of those. Just don't apply early decision (where you would be committed if admitted) unless you KNOW that your EFC will be $0

    I would also encourage you to visit Baylor, since you are close anyway...NMF guarantees you free tuition there, and there is opportunity to get more. It is also an excellent school for a pre-med track. If you visit it and like it, it will be a great safety both for money and admission; if you don't, it wasn't a lot of time wasted. Baylor's religious affiliation is interesting. They expect the administration and most professors to be Christians, and prefer their faith to be very important to them. In light of the recent athletic scandals, I would expect this to become even more pronounced. The administration/teachers will be very open in speaking about their faith, praying,etc. .However, there is no similar expectation that all students will be Christians. The university "values" will be a hindrance if you plan on drinking/partying to be an important part of your college experience. But if that is not your lifestyle, then you will probably find Baylor to be a possible option.

    If you do visit Baylor and like it, make sure to apply soon and register for the Invitation to Excellence Weekends. That will put you in the running for scholarships that go beyond tuition. They are also usually back-to-back with their BaylorSquared events, which allow a few students to get admitted to both Baylor and Baylor Med School right out of high school.

  • mamaedefamiliamamaedefamilia Registered User Posts: 2,568 Senior Member
    @theminkin

    You would be eligible for a full ride at the University of New Mexico if you are a NMF. Arizona State with its excellent Barrett Honors College also offers very generous merit scholarships for NMF. UT-Austin is more highly ranked than either of these, but if you want to keep costs low and save for med school, they are worth looking into. I know a young lady who got a great deal at UT-Dallas with stats just slightly lower than yours.

    Farther afield, there are merit scholarships by separate application at Wash U St Louis and Case Western that go up to full tuition. They are very competitive but you have excellent stats - worth a try!

    Case Western (I believe) has a direct entry BS/MD program as does UNM.
  • tk21769tk21769 Registered User Posts: 9,726 Senior Member
    The EFC could be $17k+ per year with an aid pkg that may already include full loans.

    It might be lower than that at a few rich, super selective schools ... if you can get accepted.
    https://www.usnews.com/education/best-colleges/paying-for-college/articles/2016-09-19/colleges-that-claim-to-meet-full-financial-need
    For Stanford, I get an estimated net price of $9800/year (assuming $100K family adjusted gross income, $10K in checking, $50K in home equity, 2 siblings, and no student assets). The estimated parent contribution is $4800/year; the estimated student loan is $0. However, student loans could be used to offset all or part of that $4800 parent contribution (which is below the federal student loan annual limit).

    Now, that's Stanford, so good luck with that. In determining your EFC, nearly any other college is likely to expect at least as large a parent contribution as Stanford does (and possibly more than you could offset with student loans). Unless we're missing key information about your situation, then realistically, you probably can't count on such generous need based aid. So yes, you may need to focus on merit scholarships available from less selective schools.

    Do run the online net price calculators for various schools that interest you, then discuss results with your family. If you have specific estimates for specific colleges, maybe your parents will open up a bit more.
  • itsgettingreal17itsgettingreal17 Registered User Posts: 2,918 Senior Member
    Reading between the lines of what your parents have said, I would discourage you from applying to any school that has a COA of anywhere near $30k per year. I'm very skeptical that the money is there; they may be planning on borrowing it, which is a terrible plan. As suggested, apply to 2-3 very generous meet full need schools, a few schools with very competitive full rides, and a few schools that would give you a minimum for full tuition for your NMF status.
  • culaccinoculaccino Registered User Posts: 105 Junior Member
    Thank you everybody! Sorry for the late reply, I was dealing with some stuff. The suggestions are very nice but I'm not interested in Baylor, Arizona state or New Mexico right now. I really appreciate the feedback though!

    @itsgettingreal17 yeah that's what I was thinking too. I'll definitely apply to scholarship giving schools, UTD being one of them.

    @tk21769 great advice. I'll keep that in mind as I continue to look for colleges.
  • carymomcarymom Registered User Posts: 16 New Member
    edited October 11
    To all students reading comments please be careful about your sources of information - even from well meaning posters. For example @collegemom3737 - The Robertson Scholars Leadership Program is a full ride merit scholarship offered at Duke and UNC - not UVA - UVA has The Jefferson. Additionally, there is no Morehouse scholarship at UNC but there is a Morehead-Cain.
  • collegemom3717collegemom3717 Registered User Posts: 4,232 Senior Member
    @carymom, thanks for the corrections- I was careless in matching scholarship names to the right university.

    That said, my post was in response to the previous poster, who was giving those as examples of scholarships that would make those, and similar, schools affordable for the OP.

    My point was (and is) that those scholarships are lightening strikes, and should be treated as such. Whether Robertson is at Duke or UVa, or if CH is Morehouse or Morehead, that point is accurate.

    By your user name I am guessing that you are up close and personal at least one of of those programs :-)

    (of course, I don't love that I muddled up the names, esp given that I actually do know better & know kids on those programs, but I will blame late night posting for that..).
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