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Kendall

How do you ask for more money

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I've got to ask for more money from the college my child want to attend(and we agree). Our #2 choice is so far below #1 that we don't even want to look at it, even though he has a full tuition scholarship and then some. If we had another 5000 from #1 choice we could make it work. What words do I say? This is a small Christian school. Should my son call? Should I call? Should he call and then if they don't come back with enough more, I call? Talk me through this! I'm so nervous about calling.

 

Thanks

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And who do we call. The admissions counselor or the financial aid office? He has had a lot of contact with the admissions counselor.

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I would suggest that you help your dd write a letter to the financial aid director. If you have some expenses that are not reflected on the FAFSA (like high uncovered medical bills, costs for a handicapped sibling, etc.), those should be mentioned. Aid officers can make adjustments for things like that.

 

If they haven't met your need (need = cost of attendance - FAFSA EFC), all your dd can say is that she really would like to attend "Favorite U", but that it won't be possible without $5K more in aid. If she was not awarded work study or the maximum Stafford loans for Freshman ($5500), she could also ask for those. She should mention in the letter why she's a desirable student for the school -- highlight whatever makes her special -- leadership experience, high test scores, etc. She might ask if there are some other scholarships she might apply for.

 

Either fax in the letter or send it via email, and then follow up in a few days with a phone call to make sure they received it.

 

Good Luck!

Brenda

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In The Gatekeepers they show the mother succesfully negotiating with Yale's financial aid office to get more money. In her case she shows expenses that were not consider in the financial aid materials. She does so in person while on a campus visit.

 

I think the article Barbara posted is way off base, I think there is a whole lot of negotiating that goes on.

 

Whatever you do I would convey to them that your child really wants to go to their school, but that the gap is too big for you and your child to make up. I would not dance around the amount, I would tell it to them very clearly.

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One other thing to consider is that your child might be awarded an additional grant for his freshman year but that he will then need to go through this process again in subsequent years.

 

Regards,

Kareni

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Collages will very widely on what they are willing to do-some are very formulaic, so quite flexible. Try to find out who has the authority to make aid calls (which will very from school to school). Also, if there is someone who really wants your child to attend (coach, department, band, etc) you can ask them to help with your request for more funding.

You can bring up the full scholarship offer, but it depends if the schools are comparable--if school two is a different type of school (LAC vs state branch campus) or a different caliber of school (SAT scores at school 1 are 200+ higher) I wouldn't expect to get lots of mileage with that.

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I think the article Barbara posted is way off base, I think there is a whole lot of negotiating that goes on.

 

 

 

It really depends on the school. Negotiation is going to be a term that will be off putting to most financial officers - it can prompt the reaction "we aren't running a used car lot." On the other hand, what the article talks about which is using professional judgement based on documentation is going to get you further.

 

I absolutely think it makes sense for families to go back to financial aid if the first choice school offer is too low. Typically you will get furthest if you can provide some kind of documentation of expenses (such as extraordinary medical costs) or circumstances (a job loss) that were not a part of the initial consideration.

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