WashU Scholar Finalist Weekend for Moog/Compton/Mylonas/Lien

Could those of you who have been to this in the past (or have had kids who’ve been) share what the interview entailed? Since these are specifically academic in nature, I assume the interview will be mostly about one’s academic life. But I read somewhere the word “grueling” as a descriptor and so would like to help my child be prepared (both intellectually and emotionally).

Also, could any of you shed light on how many finalists in each category are brought to campus for this event and how many end up with either half or full tuition? Does anyone NOT get at least half?

I’d also be interested in hearing any details about Danforth interview process!

I am currently a Lien scholar and would be happy to give you some info about Finalist Weekend. I don’t know too much about the Danforth interview process, but all the scholarships do some activities together so this might be applicable.

Most of the weekend ended up being an opportunity to get to know WashU and the other finalists better, rather than being a “test” for the scholarship. We got to sit in on classes, go to a play on campus, have some nice dinners with the other finalists, go to the zoo, and have a dinner with the scholarship committee (for each respective CMML group).

In terms of the interview, I would just stress that your child has already gotten through the hardest part of the application. The interviews differ for each group (Compton, Moog, Mylonas, or Lien), so I can’t speak to them all, but I at least felt that the questions they asked were fair, but also appropriate for a competitive scholarship. All in all the interview was such a brief part of the weekend that I would encourage your student to instead focus on seeing if WashU is the right school for them and getting to know the other Finalists (since the current CMML scholars are some of my best friends now).

My impression is that about 8 finalists are brought in for each group (CMML). As the website says, up to 4 full-tuition scholarships are given out, as well as up to 4 half-tuition scholarships. By being invited to Finalists Weekend students are already Honorary Scholars, but what is still up in the air is the amount of their scholarship (since you already basically have the half-tuition scholarship just by attending). Really the only way you couldn’t get half-tuition is if you did something like skip every scholarship event.

Please let me know if you have any other questions! I’d love to be helpful since I love WashU and Honorary Scholars, and know how nervous I was for Finalist weekend :slight_smile:

@kitkat231 Thank you very much! I’m really glad to hear that students coming for the CMML scholarships already have half tuition / are already Honorary Scholars. That was one of my main questions b/c it wasn’t clear in the information sent. Did they straight up tell you that when you arrived? And do you have any sense of what made the difference for getting the full tuition?

Glad to hear the interview wasn’t the main focus. My child definitely will take advantage of the opportunity to get to know the campus better and meet faculty and other students. We have been to WashU and love the campus and St Louis.

@artmom6 Someone I know mentioned having had a child go to the scholar weekend as a Danforth (I think the process is a bit different from CMML though). From what he could tell, they told the students that they already had 1/2 tuition so they could relax during the weekend. Hoping they do that for CMML too.

I can’t quite remember who told us about getting half-tuition, but I definitely remember that all the current scholars tried to stress that to us so we wouldn’t be quite so nervous. In terms of the difference between getting full vs. half tuition, I really can’t make any judgements on that since everyone was intelligent, well-spoken, accomplished, etc. The only thing I can say that I think helped me was to not act high and mighty about college applications and acceptances. My Finalists Weekend was during Ivy Day, and I definitely saw a shift in some people once they realized where they had gotten in. Actually expressing genuine interest in WashU is so important, and being able to articulate what you like about WashU and being engaged certainly can’t hurt improving your chances of getting full tuition.

Thought I’d follow back around on this thread for future applicants. Son survived the finalist weekend and (thankfully!) was offered a scholarship. He did say the interviews ranged from intensely intellectual and academic to easy going and fun. He was asked specific questions about his work and subject area. If anyone has questions, feel free to PM me.

Can any of you current scholars comment on the student experience for scholars? Are there any special perks like housing preference or special programs? The scholarship is awesome and he doesn’t need “perks” per se; I’m just curious. Also curious if the group of scholars continue to do things together throughout the 4 years or if it’s mostly just the first year.

I went through the Compton finalist interview process in the 1980s. The process may be somewhat different now.

My mom really obsessed about getting me a nice dress and nice shoes. My advice to finalists would be: Focus on your “elevator speech” about why you’re into the field you said you were into, not your shoes.

I ended up with a small runner-up scholarship, not the full tuition scholarship.

Having the runner-up scholarship was still helpful. My parents had terrible problems with getting tuition checks in on time, but, whenever the people in the bursar’s office saw that I was a Compton scholarship finalist, worries about the tuition payment deadline magically disappeared.

@kitkat231 or anyone

Does WUSTL stack their own merit based scholarships with need based aid?

Does WUSTL allow stacking outside scholarships with need based aid/merit based aid?