Schools that give the most merit aid?

Hi guys

I’m from Florida, but I’m interested in going out of state for college. The issue is expenses. I was wondering if anybody knew which schools give the most merit aid for out of state students? I was looking at schools in North Carolina, Massachusetts, and New York, but I’m open to any suggestions.

I have a 3.84 GPA UW, 5.27 Weighted, and a 1480 SAT, along with a good set of extracurriculars. I know I could have a fair shot at some more selective schools, but they’re less likely to offer the aid I need. My EFC would (hopefully) be between 10-20k a year. Also, my major is undecided.

Please let me know if you have any suggestions. :slight_smile:

You might want to look through this thread.

Your GPA is higher so more money would be offered.

What can you afford to pay? $20k? $20K? more?

If your EFC is that low, you could run the NPC at some meet needs schools who will give need based aid. Have you actually calculated it, rather than hoping?

For merit, the usual suspects are: Alabama, New Mexico, Ole Miss, Arizona, Alabama-Huntsville, Miami Ohio…

Whether they would lower the cost to $10-20k or are better than UF / FSU / UCF are other questions you need to consider.

Yes, I have calculated the NPC for multiple schools. They are all in the 40k range for EFC. I meant I was hoping to find schools that offer merit aid that would lower my EFC to the numbers I stated.

I am already applying to FSU/UF/UCF. I just want to add a few more colleges to my list because, as I said, I really do want to go out of state. These will just give me a few more options on where to apply. I know that after decisions are made, I will need to consider which one is the best fit for me and which is worth the price.

If you don’t mind Tucson climate, U of Arizona would offer you $20,000 automatically, and take a look at their honors college. It’s leave you with $16k in tuition, plus room. board, etc.

University of Alabama

University of New Mexico

Look at schools in Utah, Wyoming and Montana.

If you are getting Bright Futures in FL, I’m not sure you will find a deal as good as that one anywhere else.

I know Bright futures is a great option for me. I just want to be able to apply to more than 3 schools…

In the end I will make the decision, but for now I don’t want to confine myself to only Florida schools right now. Especially if going out of state has been a goal of mine.

Check out Utah and Utah State, merit scholarships as well as logistics of becoming a Utah resident after the first year (which they encourage, but which also has some requirements).

Utah State will give you automatic money for having an SAT and GPA that high. Also schools such as Kentucky or Kansas might be willing to match the in state tuition of Florida.

Don’t confuse EFC - expected family contribution - with COA - cost of attendance. Your EFC is what the financial aid formula says your family would be responsible for. Your COA is what you’d actually end up paying.

In your situation, you are looking for schools where your COA would be in the 10-20K range even though you have a 40K EFC. You’re going to have to apply to schools where you are quite overqualified, in order to get merit that generous.

Truman State in Missouri could be worth a look. It is the Missouri equivalent of NCF - the public honors LAC. It’s very affordable to begin with (about 25K/year “sticker price” for OOS), and you’d qualify for the max 8K/year merit, so it would be in range. It’s much smaller than the big FL publics (5K undergrads) but big enough to have a good variety of majors to explore.

At any school with a more typical “sticker price,” you’re going to need a full-tuition scholarship to get to your price point, since your budget will only cover room/board/transportation/expenses. Don’t bother considering schools where full tuition merit isn’t possible, or where your stats aren’t far enough above median to make you a viable candidate for one of those big awards.

Miami of Ohio would be a possibility - full-pay OOS COA is over 50K, but your stats put you in the auto-merit category to get at least 21K (which wouldn’t be enough) and up to full tuition (which would be enough).

When push comes to shove, bright Futures is hard to beat. You can always study abroad for a semester or a full year, and/or use the money you save to spend summers somewhere else. (Or a few of the FL publics participate in the National Student Exchange that places students on campuses in other parts of the US.)

Clear, concise and effective communication depends on a common understanding of language and terms. With that said, COA (Cost of Attendance) is not what a student receiving financial aid will actually end up paying. COA is the school’s “sticker price” and is published on each school’s web site. It is the same for every similarly situated student (e.g. all full-time undergraduate students living on campus, all part-time undergraduate students living at home, etc.). The amount that a student actually ends up paying, after financial aid is subtracted from COA, is the student’s net cost.

At a meets-full-need school, the EFC, as calculated by the school, will ordinarily be the student’s net cost. FAFSA EFC is a completely different animal, and as often pointed out here on CC, should really be called something else.