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***2018 National Merit Finalist Thread****

FSUdad93FSUdad93 215 replies8 threads Junior Member
Its time to get started with shared info for scholarships and NMF $. I am expecting my S18 to be a finalist. He is hoping to attend Harvard a NON NMF school. However, money will be a huge deciding factor. Other than our state schools, what are the best Full Ride schools? It would appear OU, TTech, UCF.....
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Replies to: ***2018 National Merit Finalist Thread****

  • vistajayvistajay 1502 replies27 threads Senior Member
    If you are in Florida nothing is going to beat going to UF or FSU for free on the Benacquisto. But check out: http://nmfscholarships.yolasite.com/

    OU recently scaled back its NMF program a bit.
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  • prodesseprodesse 1357 replies71 threads Senior Member
    One school not listed on the above compilation is Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond:

    "Finalists in the National Merit Scholarship Program who notify the National Merit Scholarship Corporation by May 31 that VCU is their first choice institution, and who apply to VCU by the November 15 scholarship deadline, are eligible for a VCU Presidential Scholarship.... This four-year scholarship covers the cost of tuition and fees up to $14,000 per year (maximum amount of $7,000 per semester) as well as room and board. The estimated total value of this four-year award is approximately $104,000."

    I don't think any other public Virginia college has an equal or better offer.

    https://www.ugrad.vcu.edu/apply/scholarships.html
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  • DiotimaDMDiotimaDM 1389 replies87 threads Senior Member
    edited August 2017
    S is a likely finalist, too. He will be taking a full ride to University of New Mexico if he makes it.
    edited August 2017
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  • ShrimpBurritoShrimpBurrito 1664 replies26 threads Senior Member
    D is a likely NMF. She is applying to OU (in state), ASU (full tuition but not full ride), and USC (Cal, probable half tuition if accepted). She is more likely to attend a Canadian university though. She is a dual citizen, making those schools an excellent value.
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  • PhlipperPhlipper 227 replies2 threads Junior Member
    UCF also offers a full ride and that includes out of state students. Texas Tech has a great program as well that is a full ride. there is another thread that details the drop off for OU, its quite significant. UT Arlington and UT Tyler also offer full rides.
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  • 3scoutsmom3scoutsmom 5614 replies338 threads Senior Member
    My DS18 is on the bubble in TX (SI 221) if he makes it he'll get a full ride (give or take a few $100) at UTD. If you are good with Texas Tech it has the best National Merit scholarship hands down. It pays ALL expenses including transportation and a stipend for incidentals.
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  • amyandscottamyandscott 112 replies3 threads Junior Member
    edited August 2017

    Any advice for full rides at engineering schools? I am new at this. Son has a 217 in AL. His first choice is Ga Tech but not sure he will get accepted there. Thoughts?

    edited August 2017
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  • tallgrasstallgrass 60 replies4 threads Junior Member
    D18 is very likely NMF also. We visited OU in the spring and she liked it a lot, to the point of making OU the only NMF school on her very short list. After learning about their new NMF package, Alabama and ASU are back on the table. Unfortunately, neither TT nor NM offer her major.
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  • DiotimaDMDiotimaDM 1389 replies87 threads Senior Member
    Engineering - UA Hunstville, Texas Tech. I'm not an engineering expert, but others will chime in later. :)
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  • BooajoBooajo 1157 replies14 threads Senior Member
    @tallgrass us too. S18 was good with OU. Now I don't know what to add because he's not interested in any of the schools you listed. Contemplating Idaho or Washington State, but nobody talks about those.
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  • vistajayvistajay 1502 replies27 threads Senior Member
    S18 is likely NMF. He is applying to music schools within universities for vocal performance major, making the NMF schools not so automatic as he could still get rejected by the music school. But right now, the schools with big NMF awards that he plans to apply to are USCal, USCarolina, Alabama, and Oklahoma.
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  • 3scoutsmom3scoutsmom 5614 replies338 threads Senior Member
    @Vistajay have you looked at the University of North Texas?
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  • Muad_dibMuad_dib 908 replies23 threads Member
    Fifty percent of parents think their child will be among the 2% that get NMF money.
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  • BooajoBooajo 1157 replies14 threads Senior Member
    It is true that most NMF don't get money, but the schools people are talking about here are the ones that DO give money directly. So yeah, unless the score in my state jumps 9 points (! not happening), S is going to be a NMSF. I assume he will then be NMF. And then IF he chooses the right school on his list (1-2 guarantee money), he should get money. If he choose the other schools on his list, then I completely assume he will NOT get money.
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  • melvin123melvin123 1610 replies22 threads Senior Member
    I'm confused by what @tallgrass said with regard to 50% of parents not sending their kids to college. Are you saying that half of the kids who meet the NMF cutoff don't even go to college?!! Or are you saying that half of all kids don't go to college AND that NMF money is available to everyone?
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  • DiotimaDMDiotimaDM 1389 replies87 threads Senior Member
    I can't speak for @tallgrass, but sometimes people mean different things when they talk about NMF money.

    Some people only count the scholarships that come directly from NMSC and their corporate sponsors. These scholarships tend to be $2500 or so, and there aren't very many of them, sot most NMFs don't get one. Perhaps this is what maud_dib was referring to.

    The larger full ride / full or partial tuition packages offered by individual schools come from the schools themselves, and those are what most of us here are talking about.
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  • DavidPuddyDavidPuddy 625 replies26 threads Member
    edited August 2017
    @Muad_dib wrote:
    Fifty percent of parents think their child will be among the 2% that get NMF money.

    I can appreciate your larger point, but the facts as you presented them are not really accurate.

    Anecdotal to those specific individuals in this thread, I know each of them are aware of their child's SI, The cut offs from their states for last year, the forecasted increase in this year's cut off based on the published commended scores, and the true nature of what a National Merit Award really is. I know this because we talk about it together....

    Note, lets make sure we are talking about the same thing when we mention "NMF money" . The context of THIS thread, and the schools mentioned in it (UNM, OU, UA, TT etc etc etc) are that they have "automatic" scholarships that are determined by NMF status, but not necessarily funded by it?

    Need clarification on anything else?
    edited August 2017
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  • tallgrasstallgrass 60 replies4 threads Junior Member
    @melvin123
    That other post came across as snarky - the way I interpreted it was that 50% of all parents hope their kid gets NMF money when only 2% of kids actually get it. Since everyone takes PSAT in HS, only 2% of test takers get money, while 50% of test takers' parents hope their kid gets money.

    So all I am saying - roughly - is that half of the kids that took PSAT test don't even go to college. Of the other half that does, only tiny portion has a snowballs chance at the scholarship. So resulting percentage of parents that hope for NMF money is really tiny, maybe not even 2% overall. That tiny group knows that a. NMF could provide a lot of money for college, and b. their kid's PSAT score is in line with historical results.

    Speaking for myself - when my S15 applied 3 years ago, we had no idea (I know!!!) what NMF was or that it provided funding for colleges. His name was announced in his HS and was told he needs to submit application quickly. We thought it's a nice accomplishment to be noted on college application. Only after postcards and emails started coming in did we realize that it's real money we are talking about!

    So now we are just being proactive and want to identify good NMF offers early on, so my D18 can enjoy her senior year. Most parents we know have no idea about NMF scholarships!
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