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National Merit Semifinalists 2020 - Where are applying?

tnknestnknes 13 replies1 threads New Member
National merit scholarship semi finalists of 2020 - Which colleges are you applying? Why? What kind of scholarship are you expecting? Did you visit any college? Please share your experiences here. My DD semi finalist from MA. SAT score 1510 and GPA 4.2. Normal extra curricular. Planning to apply Northeastern, USC, UF and USF
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Replies to: National Merit Semifinalists 2020 - Where are applying?

  • MomOfHSStudentMomOfHSStudent 32 replies4 threads Junior Member
    DD20 is already accepted to Bama. Toured the school last week. Beautiful campus. Such amazing school spirit. Everyone wearing BAMA gear. For NMF scholarships also applying to UF, then 10 other schools that if they offer NMF scholarships range from $0 - $5,000. DD20 stats- ACT Composite 35, 4.0UW/4.667W. 15 APs taken. Class rank 2/433. Pretty good ECs.
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  • silverpurplesilverpurple 191 replies43 threads Junior Member
    Northeastern is one that my child is applying. Hope she gets decent merit.
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  • tnknestnknes 13 replies1 threads New Member
    Thanks everyone. We'll explore UTD and Bama in addition to the Florida schools
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  • dreambig55dreambig55 108 replies7 threads Junior Member
    My S20 isn't really basing his top choices on (hopefully) becoming a NMF because his top 3 or so don't have any. The ones in the top 5 or 6 are Northeastern and Vanderbilt (only $5K from what I understand). So, we'll see where he may get in EA/ED and then change his undecided to one of those if it comes to that. We've visited both of those and he especially loved Vandy. :)
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  • PhlipperPhlipper 225 replies2 threads Junior Member
    drxxpresso wrote: »
    DD20 has applied and been accepted to Bama, UTD, Tx Tech, UCF. She wants to major in chemistry, go on to a PhD, and work as a research scientist.

    We visited TT and UCF this month and did the NMSF tours.

    She liked Tech more than she thought she would. Everyone was very friendly (the head of the Chem Department visited with her for an hour then came along to lunch). She thought she’d have good opportunities there. However their Honors college wasn’t as impressive as UCF’s, and she was meh on the campus and on Lubbock

    Loved UCF. The campus is beautiful, the honors housing is amazing, and most importantly she was very impressed with the resources the university puts into their Honors college. We got lots of information meeting with the Assistant Dean - lots of honors-specific advising including offices specific to research and prestigious awards.

    So right now it’s UCF with Bama as the back up if she doesn’t make finalist - there’s no reason she shouldn’t make NMF, it just seems like you should have a back up.

    If it were up to me we’d look a a few more places just for more data points - maybe a couple more Florida schools and Barrett at ASU. She says she’s done though. :-)

    UCF is the bomb diggity. My daughter loves it.
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  • tnknestnknes 13 replies1 threads New Member
    Thanks again for every one's response. My DD20 is interested in majoring public health and complete premed and go to grad school for medicine. Out of the schools that give close to full ride (Bama, UTD, UF, UCF, USF and ASU), which is one is better suited? Any feedback is greatly appreciated.
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  • CheeringsectionCheeringsection 2597 replies81 threads Senior Member
    DD20 May not apply to any NM big scholarships schools but is applying to schools that required nominations for their competitive scholarships. Early results may change her mind, but not all will send out 2nd round invitations in time for her to do that. Hoping for good early results 🤞.
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  • 3scoutsmom3scoutsmom 5610 replies338 threads Senior Member
  • tnknestnknes 13 replies1 threads New Member
    Thanks 3scoutsmom
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  • oldandwiseoldandwise 97 replies6 threads Junior Member
    DD is applying to UF, FSU, and U of Miami. We also have a son at UF on the Benacquisto, and he loves UF. These are the top Florida schools. FSU and Miami are backups because getting into UF is never certain.
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  • oldandwiseoldandwise 97 replies6 threads Junior Member
    I agree with @drxxpresso above that UTD is an impressive school. I used to live in Dallas, and it’s amazing how the school has grown. But, I’m going to plug for UF. In the fall of 2018, 276 NMS enrolled at USC, 249 at Chicago, 231 at UF, and 195 at Harvard. Those were the top 4. UF is now ranked #7 in top public schools by US News. And it has an automatic full-paid scholarship (Benacquisto) from the State of Florida for all NMFs both in-state and OOS. While it doesn’t cater to NMFs as much as some schools, such as UCF and UTD, it’s overall programs are good enough that it doesn’t have to break out separate tracks to be attractive. But the applications are due November 1. If your kid is still looking, apply to UF before the option is gone!
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  • 3scoutsmom3scoutsmom 5610 replies338 threads Senior Member
    While I agree that UF is a great school, it's *really* hard to compared such different colleges. All the school's @oldandwise mentioned are very different but of those schools only UTD and UF offer NM full rides. If you look at the common data set UF's (main campus only) undergraduate enrollment was 35,247 (with 231 NM attending) and UTD's was about half that at 18,388 (with 175 NM attending). Looking at the numbers that's pretty impressive since both schools have the same COA and UF has been around a lot longer.


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  • abner5abner5 1 replies0 threads New Member
    Is the deadline for UTD November 1st as well?
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  • GTAustinGTAustin 1225 replies9 threads Senior Member
    @abner5, no, at UTD you can apply later than 11/1. If there is any question about you becoming a finalist, I would apply before 12/1. UTD does have some great academic scholarships besides the ones for NMF called the AES scholarships and to qualify for those, UTD needs your completed application by 12/1. If you know you are going to be a NMF, you can apply even later. The NM scholarship is guaranteed if you apply, are accepted and have listed UTD as your first choice by the date NMSC deadline.
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  • mathKidsmathKids 52 replies1 threads Junior Member
    To get their regular merit, the UTD deadline is Dec 1st. I am not sure if that applies to NMSF as well. E-mail them, they are extremely friendly.

    DS20 has applied to UTD (already accepted) and to a few other colleges that award merit scholarships but don't necessarily give significant merit to NMF. We have visited UTD twice and are really impressed especially by their cs honors program. We hope DS will get accepted into it.

    If you plan to visit UTD, definitely contact the honor college ahead of time.
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  • GTAustinGTAustin 1225 replies9 threads Senior Member
    @mathKids, for the CS honors program, there is a test that they have to pass. It is not a test of programming but of discrete math or more of a logic test. I'm sure your DS20 will be asked to take this test but if you have not heard by late February, contact Dr. Page and express your interest in the program. Parents can recommend their kids.
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  • mathKidsmathKids 52 replies1 threads Junior Member
    @GTAustin Thank you for mentioning it.

    We met with Dr. Page at our last visit, and DS20 will get to take the test. We were told about 150 students get to take the test, and there are only 30 spots available. Hopefully, all the years of math competitions will help. We will see.

    We both really liked Dr. Page and all he had to say about the cs program. If the DS gets in, UTD is a clear winner (on many levels).
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  • CincoDadCincoDad 17 replies2 threads Junior Member
    DS is applying to UF, UCF, USF, TX Tech, UTD, OK St, and Bama. So far we visited Tech and UTD and he preferred UTD because of the Comp Science department, library, honors program, dorms, and it just felt right to him. We are also visiting the FL schools but right now his first choice is UTD.
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