Florida is an excellent school. But I am already in Michigan and Cal Poly (among others), and waiting on Cornell, Chicago, USC, and Emory. I applied to Florida because of the high amount of National Merit dollars relative the school strength overall and particularly in CS (only USC is better NM value for me because USC gives 1/2 tuition and has the best CS games program in country).
Since Michigan and probably Cal Poly are much better for CS, I would not consider Florida unless I felt I had the full ride guaranteed for all 4 years (subject to keeping my GPA up of course).
And it is a shame because I was so excited when I got admitted to Florida. But unless there is some more certainty on this issue, I think I will most likely end up in Ann Arbor (or Ithaca, Chicago, or Los Angeles).
Most NM finalists will have many top schools to choose from. Florida will probably lose many or most of these students to higher ranked schools if the NM full ride isn’t there. This is a sad but true reality.
Just imagine if Alabama or UT Dallas all of the sudden got rid of their amazing NM scholarships. Do you know how many NM scholars Alabama or UT Dallas would get if that happened? Probably much closer to zero than to their current numbers.
True Florida is not Alabama or UT Dallas. But Florida is also no IVY, Stanford, MIT, Chicago, Michigan, Berkeley, UCLA, UVA, UNC, etc.
Maybe someday. But not yet.