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View Diary: Reasons why college is so expensive. (50 comments)

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  •  A Financial Aid Trick (3+ / 0-)

    At smaller private colleges, they may try to 'bait and switch' you by offering you a relatively generous financial aid package for year 1, then slowly paring it away, citing changes in rules, gov't grants, increase in your income, or whatever.  

    Don't believe it.  At well-off private schools, the FA 'formula' is whatever they feel like paying.  And if you show up with your primary tuition payer (dad, mom, self, whoever) at the financial aid office and threaten to become a 'bad retention statistic' if your original package isn't restored, or some of those loans don't turn back into grants, you will likely be listened to.  It helps if you can enlist a well-thought-of professor or two to support, or at least with a letter.  

    Just an idea for those of you out there intimidated by the whole process.  

    Make your free throws at the end of regulation, and you'll be ok.

    by El Sobrante on Fri Jul 03, 2009 at 01:16:51 PM PDT

    •  I don't doubt that some places try to (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      El Sobrante

      do this garbage, but I have not seen it myself.  Of course, a flat rate (e.g. $10,000/yr.) scholarship does diminish in percentage if tuition increases.  Always make sure you read carefully and ask this question, but schools with good reputations dont'e do this - they won't keep their reputations for long.

      So I see only tatters of clearness through a pervading obscurity - Annie Dillard -6.88, -5.33

      by illinifan17 on Fri Jul 03, 2009 at 01:23:07 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  My experience is (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        that schools with very good reputations (several top 20 liberal-arts colleges, some with 'need blind admission') do this.  People pay the "parental contribution" because they think it's a hard-and-fast formula... it is not.  If a college has the resources to pay for somebody's kid to go tuition free... why not put in a legwork to make it your kid?

        Make your free throws at the end of regulation, and you'll be ok.

        by El Sobrante on Fri Jul 03, 2009 at 01:45:11 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  I was a victim of this (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        northsylvania, El Sobrante

        90 miles or so south of your illini.  I didn't see it in grad school because I paid for that out of pocket but it returned for med school.  I think it is a far more common occurrence than you think.  I have heard about it from others and was warned when I chose my undergrad with partial scholarship vs full rides elsewhere.  Unfortunately 'education' is a scam like any other industry.  

    •  the same thing happens at publics, by a different (0+ / 0-)

      mechanism: tuition rates go up every year.

      illinois thus passed the "truth in tuition bill" which basically says, your tuition is guaranteed to stay the same for the first 4 years.

      To put the torture behind us is, inevitably, to put it in front of us.

      by UntimelyRippd on Fri Jul 03, 2009 at 03:26:34 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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