I’ve really been struggling with the notion that people are less likely to refuse this year and maybe I’m just making myself feel better but…
Even though Penn increased its financial aid budget a couple of years ago, they still need to make money to run. COVID hit people’s finances and businesses hard. My mom and I have talked about this a bunch and we just assumed not as many people would find paying for elite schools feasible last year or this year coming up. So if the refusal percentage is less than normal, we are guessing:
- Dreamy applicants haven’t been realistic yet about the costs and may even get in a bind making it work or staying committed–maybe they just thought, “I’m accepting this offer and I’ll try to figure out how to make it work before I have to pay the bills in the fall.”
- Out of the increased numbers of applicants, maybe not only were there lots more qualified applicants, but maybe even more who were willing and able to accept a low financial aid offer.
BTW…One of the best ways to get off a Waitlist is to withdraw the request for financial aid, but you gotta be able to deliver when the bill comes. Maybe there are a lot of admits who can do that this year, but I’m surprised by that.
Call me crazy, but I’m waiting to see people who accepted and said, “we’ll try to figure out how to make the $ work,” will bail out when it gets closer to school or we’ll see some massive financial crisis in 4 years when people graduate and have like $300,000 of student loans they can’t pay. I know the Ivies have the ability to “call an alum to get it done,” for paying for an admit who can’t pay, but there’s only so many of those. I’m probably wrong and don’t understand the finance part of all of this too well.
I can’t help it though, but think there’s this underlying fantasy escapism thing–escaping from the COVID nightmare-- going on in the background that’s making people shoot for the stars because they need something so bad to be amazing after so much sucked last year, and that is gonna explode in the next couple of months or maybe even a year or 4.
Mehh… oh well.