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how much merit-based aid could i get?

modest markmodest mark Registered User Posts: 19 New Member
assuming i get in, how much money could i probably get from usc?

GPA: UW 3.6
SAT: 2340 (770 Math, 790 Writing, 780 Critical Reading)

taking SAT II's in Dec.

US History- 3
Calc AB-3
World History - 3
English Language/Composition-5
World History-3

1) National Merit Semifinalist (hoping for finalist)
2) AP Scholar with Distinction
3) National Honor Society
4) Student Congress Member
5) Basketball Varsity Team Captain

yes, my gpa's awful. how much will that hurt my chances of getting in / getting merit-based aid?

thanks in advance!
Post edited by modest mark on

Replies to: how much merit-based aid could i get?

  • Columbia_StudentColumbia_Student Registered User Posts: 5,046 Senior Member
    Assume you are going to make NMF, you will half-tuition off + $1000. I heard other parents said their kids receive University Scholar because they filed the FAFSA application. However, DD did not receive anything like that.
  • modest markmodest mark Registered User Posts: 19 New Member
    my parents make about 100k.. would i still have a shot at that? and how much does money does a 'university scholar' receive? sorry about all of the questions, and thanks again for the reply.
  • Columbia_StudentColumbia_Student Registered User Posts: 5,046 Senior Member
    Regarding $100K, you might get some money but that is financial aid and not merit aid.
    I believe University Scholar is about $4000.

    I was only responding to merit aid not financial aid because fianancial depends on your EFC.
  • FauxNomFauxNom Registered User Posts: 1,220 Senior Member
    If you get in, you'll for sure get the national merit money (half tuition plus $1000 per year). Nobody seems to know why they received University Scholar, but for my son it started at $4k per year, but then was reduced to $2500 once the national merit award kicked in.

    Whether you get in will depend somewhat on your major. Some are uber-competitive, and your excellent SAT score won't guarantee that you get in. If your app stands out, you might get invited to interview for a trustee's scholarship, but my guess is that your GPA would hurt you in that regard, unless you come from a high prestige high school and took the hardest possible classes.
  • GroovyGeekGroovyGeek Registered User Posts: 889 Member
    Agree with FN: Chances for Trustee's are slim on account of decent but uninspiring GPA (relative to the rest of the Trustee's pool). NMF = 1/2 tuition plus $1-2k merit on top of that, so do whatever you can to make it, your parents will appreciate it :D. If you don't make NMF you are pretty much guaranteed a University Scholarship with the uber-high SATs, $4k give or take, assuming that your GPA places you near the 10th percentile of your class. It has been said many times here and elsewhere --- high SAT plus so-so GPA is usually interpreted as "smart but not particularly hardworking". In many schools that compete for a similar candidate pool as USC you are actually better off in the reverse position --- high GPA/rank and middle-of-the road SAT. Fortunately for you, USC seems to pay more attention to SATs than some of its competition. $100k may get you finaid, unlike others I think it will be meaningful, but that depends on many other things. Your EFC is your best indicator there, not sure if USC commits to meeting demonstrated need, but they come pretty close. Note that any NMF money you receive will decrease your demonstrated need and therefore decrease any finaid award.
  • mdcisspmdcissp Registered User Posts: 2,494 Senior Member
    If you become a National Merit Finalist, you have to declare in writing that USC is your FIRST CHOICE school to the College Board and USC. If you put down another school as first choice, then I am not sure that you will qualify for the Presidential scholarship. Look at the USC brochure on scholarships where info. is given about what qualifies you for each scholarship.
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