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Nmsf status affect chances?

MontymomMontymom Registered User Posts: 7 New Member
Wondering if NMSF status will negatively impact child's application because USC provides generous aid to merit scholars. Would DC be less likely to be admitted so the school could avoid granting aid?
Post edited by Montymom on

Replies to: Nmsf status affect chances?

  • camomof3camomof3 Registered User Posts: 846 Member
    That wouldn't really make any sense. If USC wanted to avoid granting generous merit money, they could easily do so by not giving the NMF Presidential to all admitted NMF students. They could simply make such scholarships "competitive" like many schools do. Instead, they choose to offer the NMF Presidential to all admitted students.

    Yes, there are students who are NMF who are not accepted to USC each year. Maybe the rest of their admission package wasn't what USC was looking for. The NMF is a small thing in reality-- one score on a PSAT that isn't even really fair to all. Some students can make it by scoring a 205 while others scoring 220 miss out because they live in other states.
  • HImomHImom Registered User Posts: 33,074 Senior Member
    In 2006, all NMFs admitted to USC could get merit awards of 1/2 tuition. Now, from their website, it appears they MAY get such a merit award but it is no longer automatic if you are admitted.

    USC attracts A LOT of very high caliber students. Whether or not the student is a NMF is one factor IN THE STUDENT'S FAVOR, but there are many others and competition gets tougher every year due to growing popularity of the school and numbers that matriculate at USC.
  • madbeanmadbean Registered User Posts: 3,236 Senior Member
    Actually, a phone call was made earlier this season and USC's admissions office confirmed there was no policy change, despite the different wording. All NMF's who are admitted to USC and list USC first w/NMF will get the Presidential Scholarship (1/2 tuition for 4 years). I just wanted to set the record straight since this question was already raised and set right, I thought, by GeorgiaGirl.

    As for the question of whether being NMF will hinder admissions, the answer is no. USC wants to enroll a very large number of NMFs--hence the logic of the automatic scholarship. However, they likely do not find NMF status, in and of itself, enough to automatically admit a student. As has been mentioned, the student must be in the same general range of qualifications that would get them admitted, no matter what.

    The only tricky area, I am guessing (just my observation from outside the system but watching closely for many years), is the student who may fall closer to the lower end of the mid-range in tests and gpa, and/or shows no great rigor in their HS courses (not taking many APs when many are offered), and/or has few EC interests, and/or has all that but some red flag shows up in the LoR/student's record, and/or all that was fine but the student writes an offhand essay/application that clearly shows little real interest in USC. USC might choose to pass on honoring that student with a top merit award simply based on their excellent PSAT score. That score shows just one aspect--and it's a good one--but admissions are holistic and the score alone will not get that student admitted. For a borderline admit, will the cost of the merit $$ tip that student into the no pile? This is hard to know.

    Would this same pretty good student be admitted if USC didn't have to fork over Presidential money based on their NMF honors? That is an interesting question, indeed. The truth is USC has been receiving an ever increasing number of applications from students with superior credentials. NMF is not likely a big part of this equation, and we would expect that the weaker student would be unlikely get in over the stronger one.

    But for a good solid candidate who really wants to attend USC and puts together a great application, I think NMF can only help.

    Just my opinion, btw.
  • tocollegetocollege Registered User Posts: 786 Member
    Montymom, if you seriously believe that being NMSF will "hurt" your kid's chances (it won't), she can just leave that off her application - USC has no way of knowing unless she tells them. Then, if she is accepted and names USC as her first choice by the deadline, she will still get the 1/2 tuition scholarship (which shows that being NMSF isn't a negative - if they were going to admit/not admit based on NMSF standing, they wouldn't give out the scholarship unless she listed in her application).

    Just remember that NMSF are not guaranteed admission, and about 40,000 applicants will be rejected - including a whole bunch of NMSF.
  • tocollegetocollege Registered User Posts: 786 Member
    And HImom, I saw another thread where someone said that the wording now said "considered" and they took that to mean that the scholarship was no longer given to all accepted NMF. I still have my scholarships listing from 2008 - the wording is exactly the same now as it was in 2008 when all accepted NMF were given the scholarship.

    2008 (Word-for-word from my Undergraduate Application 2008 brochure): National Merit Finalist Presidential: Selected on the basis of PSAT performance. Entering freshmen are considered if they have been designated National Merit Finalists and name USC as their first-choice college with the National Merit Scholarship Corporation.

    2012 (Copied and pasted from Scholarships For Academic Year 2013-2014 http://www.usc.edu/admission/undergraduate/private/1314/uscScholarships1314.pdf ) National Merit Finalist Presidential: Selected on the basis of PSAT performance. Entering freshmen are considered if they have been designated National Merit Finalists and name USC as their first-choice college with the National Merit Scholarship Corporation.

    The only difference in the brochure is that in 2008 it was approximately $17,000/year and now it is approximately $22,000/year. (And it automatically increases each year if tuition increases.)
  • HImomHImom Registered User Posts: 33,074 Senior Member
    OK, I stand corrected. In 2006, the year our S applied & matriculated at USC, we were informed that ALL NMFs accepted by USC who listed USC as their 1st choice prior to the deadline would get the Presidential 1/2 tuition scholarship. Don't remember the precise language that was used on the USC website, but we called USC to confirm.

    One other good thing is that the particular school or department which accepts the student CAN provide additional merit award(s). FAid can also be in addition to this, as applicable.
  • Georgia GirlGeorgia Girl Registered User Posts: 3,771 Senior Member
    Some admitted NMScholars received additional smaller merit scholarships from particular schools such as Marshall, Viterbi or Annenberg and reported the news on this board.
  • HImomHImom Registered User Posts: 33,074 Senior Member
    Yes, our S & several of his friends got the NMF 1/2 tuition award as well as additional small merit awards from Viterbi & other schools. He was also allowed to be paid for research with his profs, even though he did not have work study. All of the merit awards really helped reduce the total cost of his education.

    One of our friend's had a S that got a FULL TUITION award! He was highly sought after by all the Us where he applied & many offered him full tuition. He got two bachelor's degrees and a master's degree in 4 years plus one summer.
  • PundadPundad Registered User Posts: 31 Junior Member
    My D applied last year, and I enquired with the admission department and was told all admitted NMF selecting USC as top choice would receive the 1/2 scholarship. My D received this plus some additional unexpected scholarships. The one odd item is that many NMF were not admitted in the early scholarship selection process, even though they eventually receive the scholarship. This left her with the impression that USC was rejecting her while other schools were wooing her. She got over this and is happily attending USC.
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