Purdue vs. URI - CS


I am currently trying to decide between attending Purdue University or University of Rhode Island for CS this upcoming fall. URI gave me $16.5k in grant aid which brought my COA down to $27k, while Purdue gave me absolutely no financial aid and remains at $46k. I am likely going to have to pay for college majorly on my own. I am wondering if anyone has any advice on which school I should attend. I love both campuses but I know that Purdue has much more opportunities and job outlook. Purdue’s price is the only issue.

What I already know:
Acceptance Rate: Purdue is way more competitive than URI for CS.
Price: $46k (Purdue) vs. 27k (URI).
Purdue has their ISA program… but it is still technically a loan.
URI has a digital forensics minor (I’m definitely interested).
Purdue has a more established department.
URI has an internship as a graduation requirement
Purdue has corporate partnerships with big-name companies out west.

I am stuck. Any advice would be greatly appreciated :slight_smile:

How much exactly? If I’m reading this right, you’re going to need 100K in loans for URI - that’s above the federal maximum, so you’ll need parent plus loans. Are your parents ready to sign those?

Given that, Purdue basically doubles the amount you’ll end up paying with interest included. With CS being such a good field for jobs, Purdue is not going to magically make up that 100K+ difference. If you ever leave CS, you’re also in a much better position.

So at this point I’d say throw Purdue out of the running, but also make sure you can manage the high cost of URI. Are there any other options you have that are less than URI?

URI is currently my cheapest option. We also appealed our financial aid offer because a significant amount of income was calculated into my EFC but is no longer available. Right now, my family and I have saved about $20k that we will be able to put towards only my first year of school. After that, URI costs $27k before my Stafford loans, $21.5k after. Besides my first year, where I may pay a bit less, I am probably looking at paying anywhere from $15-$18k a year on my own. We are going to have to take out private loans regardless.

My parents are also divorced. There is a good chance that if I went to Purdue, I would see more money from my father’s side. But I’m not sure if that would really make the difference.

Also, after recalculating the numbers with the figures on my financial aid. It seems as if URI may be closer to $29k before Stafford loans. Yay me :confused:

I’m one of those who thinks your school doesn’t matter that much for CS. Purdue has a good reputation for CS, but it’s not something I’d pay extra for.

Minimize your debt as much as you can. That should be your top priority.

If financial situation is different from what it was on the FA application, could you ask the FA offices for reconsideration based on current financial situation?

As it is now, it looks like you have no affordable choices. Community college first then transfer may cut costs, but that may still be too much.