Good colleges that usually offer great need-based financial aid?

<p>Sorry if this has been asked, I couldn't find anything. </p>

<p>Seeing as my family's income isn't very high (45k-ish, EFC <5k), I want to apply to one or two colleges that will serve as "financial safeties". As in, somewhere that'll end up cheaper than my state's flagship if I was to get in.</p>

<p>I know of plenty colleges that offer excellent aid (Ivies, MIT, Rice, Emory, Amherst, Williams, Wesleyan, etc). I've applied to a few, including Rice and Emory, but as admissions are so unpredictable, I want a few universities that are slightly less reach-y (not too less, though).</p>

<p>Any good colleges in the range of, say, Lehigh or Boston College that offer amazing aid? I'm okay with universities and LACs.</p>

<p>There is no such thing as a "safety" full-need college. Only 63 out of 1,700+ schools in the country have such a policy. There's a list here: <a href="http://www.usnews.com/education/best-colleges/paying-for-college/articles/2011/02/16/which-colleges-claim-to-meet-students-full-financial-need%5B/url%5D"&gt;http://www.usnews.com/education/best-colleges/paying-for-college/articles/2011/02/16/which-colleges-claim-to-meet-students-full-financial-need&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/p>

<p>Thank you for that list; it's very helpful in narrowing my search. Regardless- yes, those colleges meet 100% of need, but I've heard their packages can differ greatly because they "calculate" them differently. Some are loans-heavy. For example, I have heard Boston College gives out simply okay packages (in many cases, students have said they got a better package from an academically comparable school that doesn't meet 100% need). I've heard the Ivies/top LACs give generous, excellent packages. (Again, I've only heard all this. Correct me if I'm mistaken.)</p>

<p>Basically, I was wondering if there were less-reachy colleges that are also notorious in giving generous aid.</p>

<p>You're right. Certainly none of those schools are safeties- I meant they were safe financially, not an admissions safety (if in, there's a high chance I wouldn't have to worry about the aid they give)- though I have very good chances for several of those listed with stats nicely at/above the 25th percentile and decent EC.</p>

<p>Boston College isn't really a safety.</p>

<p>What are your stats?</p>

<p>Often, if you have high stats, and you need a safety, then you need to look at school where your stats would get you a big merit scholarship.</p>

<p>Are you a likely NMF?</p>

<p>What is your major?</p>

<p>Yes, I didn't mean admissions safety. :) BC's but a match. I have a 3.85 UW / 4.5 W GPA, #6/500~, 33 ACT, and pretty rigorous courseload. No NMF (200). EC's are weak/ok- 4 years Yearbook & Newspaper, couple of minor photojournalism awards, Key Club (international club) president, some volunteering, and a handful of other small things. My major's likely going to be in the social sciences or engineering, so I'd like both options open.</p>

<p>I have an admissions AND financial safety set aside, which is UT Austin, my state's flagship. It's a good school and my parents are able to afford it even assuming minimum financial aid. As my parents don't want me to go far without a reason (nor do I find a reason to), I certainly don't want to apply to anything academically "lower" than UT. Sorry, I know there are many factors at play here! :/</p>

<p>Go for the top LACs. Vassar has the best financial aid I've heard of, but Grinnell, Hamilton, Middlebury, Amherst and so on all have great financial aid. All of them seem like good matches for your stats.</p>

<p>check Colgate University, though it can be competitive</p>

<p>Thanks! That's exactly what I was looking for. I am actually very interested in Vassar, Colgate, and Hamilton already. I'll def look into them more. :) I've heard top LAC's do give awesome finaid. Guess it's true.</p>