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Feedback on college list for CS for potential NMSF/National Hispanic

kethrakethra 57 replies1 threads Junior Member
I would love to get your feedback on the current list for applications for our rising senior son. I have hopefully addressed all of the things suggested by @ucbalumnus on the forum sticky. :smile:

S21 is looking to study CS. He currently has taken a total of 7 Honors classes, 1 DE, and 4 APs (Calculus AB=5, Comp Sci A=5, APUSH=3, AP World=4). He should end up with at least 1 more DE and 2 more APs senior year, but I can't check his Fall schedule until school starts. His current GPA is 3.51 UW and his PSAT score was 1460 / SI is 219, which should hopefully place him at the projected cutoff for NMSF for our state. Scheduled to take the SAT on Oct 3 locally, if it doesn't get canceled. Since he's a very good test taker and excels in math, expecting him to get over 1500 on the SAT. He was invited to apply for the National Hispanic Recognition Program, which should be a lock since his GC confirmed he made the GPA cutoff. No real ECs other than participating in marching band, after school jazz band, and participation in a couple of clubs. He has been a Davidson Young Scholar since the age of 6, skipped a grade (K), and also a member of the Center for Talented Youth at JHU since grade school. I think he's a lot smarter than his grades reflect.

We are chasing merit money as we qualify for almost no need-based aid and due to me being in grad school forever due to being a victim of a crime, we got a really late start in saving for retirement. Also, since I am the sole breadwinner and will have to support both hubby and myself in retirement (I'm 52), there is no way that we can pay more than about $12k per year realistically towards his college, while the NPCs all say we can afford to pay $48k+/yr.

Right now we are mostly targeting schools that will likely be full rides or close to it for NMF, but if he doesn't make that, then I want to make sure that we are considering other schools that have generous merit aid. Location of the school does not matter, we are just looking for the best CS program that we can afford. We live in a suburb of Seattle, WA.

List to Apply:
1. U Wash -- no merit aid but instate fees and can live at home. Highly ranked CS program.
2. U So Cal -- not even sure if we should apply here because NMF is only half tuition, but he would possibly be legacy admit as I got my MA there
3. Texas A&M
4. U Central Florida
5. U Texas Dallas
6. Arizona State U
7. U Florida
8. Florida State U
9. Texas Tech

I was looking at maybe also applying to U Alabama.

Any thoughts on where else we (I) should be looking? We aren't trying to shoot for Ivy league or T20 schools where he has no chance of merit aid.
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