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Honest opinion of merit scholarship possibilities in Engineering

hosbrook41hosbrook41 9 replies1 threads New Member
I am very new to all of this college stuff, so please be patient. My DD is a senior, wanting to go into Engineering (Mech most likely, Loves Robotics). She got a good score on the SAT (1560: 800 math), an 800 in Math II subj SAT, GPA 94.14 u/w, 97.86w. We are in NY and so far RIT, RPI, Suny Bing, and Lafayette are on the list, along with Drexel, Northeastern, and a few others.

All of my friends are telling me she is a shoe-in for scholarships, full-rides, etc. I am wary to believe that she will get anything: expect the worst and hope for the best mentality. I don't know if I've given enough info, but what ARE her chances of a merit scholarship, and how much? (BTW, CWRU, Northeastern...those price tags scare the heck out of me, so we are not in the bracket that can handle $60-75k/year.)

Thanks in advance!
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Replies to: Honest opinion of merit scholarship possibilities in Engineering

  • momofsenior1momofsenior1 7644 replies61 threads Senior Member
    I think she'll likely see the RPI merit bring the COA below $40K/yr. Drexel should be generous. She'll probably see something from Case but not a full ride. Can't comment on the others.

    If you are needing to chase a full ride, look at schools like Alabama, Iowa State, Arizona....
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  • BingeWatcherBingeWatcher 936 replies7 threads Member
    Any chance she is NMSF?
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  • hosbrook41hosbrook41 9 replies1 threads New Member
    Commended Student
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  • 3scoutsmom3scoutsmom 5570 replies337 threads Senior Member
    for a very affordable great engineering school look into UA Huntsville. Have her apply just for the heck of it so she'll have good financial safety in hand. The application is very easy, it might take her 5 minutes tops

    https://www.uah.edu/admissions/undergraduate/financial-aid/scholarships/freshmen/freshmen-non-al-merit-tuition-scholarships

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  • NoisymomNoisymom 39 replies2 threads Junior Member
    Maybe I will express an unpopular opinion, but I will talk from experience of my friend. Her son is freshman at NYU now. He applied very last minute to applied math (engineering school). Got accepted with $48K scholarship. She got laid off that year, send them additional paperwork about their situation now and they added $18K. So now her son is only taking federal loan $5,500... When I asked her about the scholarship she said on paper it was all under "Tandon Engineering School scholarship". I know NYU is known to be very expensive, but here you go... Don't know his stats for sure, definitely few B on the transcript, overall very smart guy, assuming his scores were high also (did not ask).
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  • NJEngineerDadNJEngineerDad 155 replies1 threads Junior Member
    edited September 23
    If her core unweighted GPA is above 3.75/4, University of Arizona would offer a 30K merit scholarship, which would bring your total cost down to about 24K/year.

    https://financialaid.arizona.edu/types-of-aid/scholarships/freshman-transfer#incomingfall2020freshmannon-residentawards
    edited September 23
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  • taverngirltaverngirl 1028 replies29 threads Senior Member
    Clarkson would be very generous, possibly full tuition or full ride. Great school. My niece graduated a few years ago (as did her boyfriend); my d's friend is a current sophomore, and they all and love(d) it. My d's other friend had similar stats and got a full ride there last year, though she didn't attend. Laf doesn't award many scholarships, so getting merit is pretty competitive. Not sure on the others.
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  • colorado_momcolorado_mom 8990 replies79 threads Senior Member
    I'm originally from NY and graduated as Mech Eng from Clarkson (as did my husband - we are still in tough with many of our campus pals). The rural/cold setting is not everybody's cup of tea, but I was really happy with my choice. Having followed Clarkson news through the years, I think it seems even better now.
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  • 4Gulls4Gulls 540 replies0 threads Member
    Look at WPI, too. I know folks with stats similar (or a notch lower) than your D’s who have gotten generous scholarships.
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  • hosbrook41hosbrook41 9 replies1 threads New Member
    edited September 23
    ColoradoMom: Thanks! Will add that one to the list.
    edited September 23
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  • hosbrook41hosbrook41 9 replies1 threads New Member
    4Gulls: Thanks! Will look at WPI...it's pretty small, right?
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  • hosbrook41hosbrook41 9 replies1 threads New Member
    Taverngirl: Another nod for Clarkson! Had not heard of it until now, but will definitely look into it...thanks.
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  • hosbrook41hosbrook41 9 replies1 threads New Member
    momofsenior1: great info, thanks! AZ, Iowa, AL...she wants to be a bit closer to home, but everything is a big Pro/Con list!
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  • colorado_momcolorado_mom 8990 replies79 threads Senior Member
    Most ABET engineering programs are a reasonable choice, so ranking lists should not be a big factor . But I just did a quick google search to show that Clarkson is indeed a recognized name..... on this list it is #3 in NY / Mech Eng (after RPI and Cornell) - https://www.collegefactual.com/majors/engineering/me-mechanical-engineering/rankings/top-ranked/middle-atlantic/new-york/


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  • hosbrook41hosbrook41 9 replies1 threads New Member
    eyemgh: THANK YOU for your thorough response :) It is good to stay grounded & focused..trying to remember that through all of the madness that the schools & other parents stir up. I will definitely look into Olin now!
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  • Parentof2014gradParentof2014grad 995 replies12 threads Senior Member
    In 2014 my engineering DD got full tuition at Illinois Institute of Technology (competitive scholarship) and $14k/yr at Drexel. She had 4.0uw/~4.6w and 33 ACT.

    Do your own research (as you are) and don't listen to the casual parent scholarship talk. It's mostly inaccurate. Read the scholarship and financial aid websites of each school you are considering very carefully. It's especially rare that big giant scholarships exist that aren't mentioned on those websites. Agree with @eyemgh that tuition discounts are attainable and full rides are very rare.

    Best advice: know your own financial situation and what you can afford, whether you are eligible for need based aid and whether it would make schools actually affordable or just less out of reach, and your comfort level with student loans. Make sure you understand the difference between need-based aid and merit aid, and which schools offer what kinds of aid and how it combines or doesn't combine. Run the net price calculators at the schools you are considering to get a basic idea of money at each school. All this will help you and your daughter come up with a sensible list to apply to. Apply early for merit scholarships--there's early deadlines fast approaching for those at many schools.




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  • aphyskidaphyskid 2 replies0 threads New Member
    Hey! I’m an RPI student, so I can at least give you a picture for RPI merit scholarship. With those scores, she will easily get a generous offer. I only heard of 2 people who didn’t receive anything, and with your daughter’s scores she will certainly get a lot of money. I had about the same gpa but a substantially lower sat (1420 with a 720 on math) and no subject tests, and I got 25K. I know kids who didn’t have as well of scores of your D who received almost full rides, so it’s very possible she can get a full ride depending on how the essays, recs, extra curricular, etc look. The key to receiving money is to look like you’re really a good fit for RPI, which means looking as nerdy as possible. The people who received the most money had extracurriculars in their field of interest and incorporated their interests in essays. So, I’d say she’s most likely to receive a scholarship for most, if not all, of her tuition!
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  • aphyskidaphyskid 2 replies0 threads New Member
    One thing I forgot to mention is I’m not sure if she will get the “official” merit scholarship from RPI itself, but she will almost certainly get one from some third party. Different foundations or alumni award scholarships, which is what the majority of the student population has. Also, I agree with the comment elsewhere that it’s worth looking into WPI - I’ve heard of a lot of kids picking RPI over WPI or vice versa, so I gather they’re similar. If you have any questions about RPI’s scholarships or RPI in general, feel free to PM me!! Good luck :)
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  • colorado_momcolorado_mom 8990 replies79 threads Senior Member
    My son loved Olin. But it is a niche-fit school, too teeny/limited for most students. (The do have a February Candidates Weekend, for the "first cut'" of admits... so there is a chance to learn more about it). Even though there is a half tuition scholarship for all, Olin is still pricey - looking quick at website still about $53k/year. Often students with Olin-ready stats can get a better deal elsewhere.
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