Thank you so much to everyone who’s responded. Okay last question (I’m only belaboring the merit aid point because my family probably won’t qualify for much need-based aid) does anyone know what percentage of accepted students get merit aid? I think I saw 50% somewhere but idk. Thank you all so much and congrats (whether or not you/your child got into Mac, congrats)!
Not sure about the percentage….but Macalester is need-aware. We are a “full pay” family. My S22 applied EA, was accepted, but received no merit at all from Mac. By comparison, he received $10-30k/year in merit from every other LAC to which he was accepted including Kenyon, Oberlin, Denison and Gettysburg. His stats were: SAT 1420, GPA 3.6 UW / 4.5 W, 6 AP classes (all 4’s so far), lots of Honors courses, probably below average ECs, probably above average essays. If merit is important to you, I would cast a wide net so you can compare offers. Good luck!
I’ll throw in Lawrence U (WI) and Lake Forest (IL) which were very generous in their merit scholarships this year. We applied to them as small LAC safeties that would be lower cost due to expected merit aid vs. large low cost public safeties.
Nice to see your Lawrence University comments here. My student received a much large merit scholarship at Lawrence, bringing our direct cost for Lawrence about $15K less than Mac. I don’t think we can swing Mac, especially with another kid right behind this one.
Congratulations! Lawrence is a great school! I used to live in the area and remember seeing Yo Yo Ma and Dizzy Gillespie at their Chapel Concerts which are incredible. My knowledge is 20+ years old but if you have questions I’d be happy to assist!
I check Road2College pretty often and I have not seen merit at 26K. I think families lump grants with the merit. Its easy to do and some people are embarrassed about getting need based aid. My DS got 22K in merit from Macalester and 15K in grants. And I didn’t think we would get a dime in need based, I just filled out the FAFSA for the heck of it. He only got grants from Macalester and Holy Cross, both meets needs schools, nothing from 12 others.
My post is wrong. The most I’ve seen is $23K for two separate students.
Here is a pie chart of merit aid awards:
My kid got $18K merit plus some grants totaling about $26K. They are clearly need-aware, as this ends up with our direct costs about $3K less than our EFC. Direct costs don’t include travel, books, personal expenses.
My son was also recruited (baseball) and was accepted ED1. He received $23k in merit (DeWitt Wallace Distinguished). His stats are 4.0 unweighted GPA, IB DP, ACT 34, I’d say average essay but solid ECs with sports, music, and clubs. We visited a lot of schools and had other offers but after visiting Mac and meeting with the coaches and players in August, it was far and away his top choice. We took another long weekend in February and loved it even in the winter! We are beyond excited for the opportunity!
Curious if anyone with top merit award went test optional?