IN AT UPENN

Share Your Experiences, Read About Other Experiences. Please keep posts organized by school and expected year of graduation.
bdubs
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Re: IN AT UPENN

Postby bdubs » Tue Mar 29, 2011 11:56 am

adam1 wrote:Can I humbly ask for advice?
I hope the answer is yes, as I am about to do so.

I received a very generous aid offer from Penn (sorry in advance. I hope we all get what we need, and I know that this process is anything but fair.) I'm wondering if there is a maximum aid package (that is, merit+need) because I'm thinking of asking for more in merit based on competing offers. My concern is that at best they'll add more merit scholarship and take way from need-based grant; in other words, they'll just reject my request.

Does this make any sense? Anybody have any insight?

For disclosure, I am trying to cover the relatively small amount that I'd be taking on in PLUS loans, and, FWIW, I wouldn't be seeking to do so if my background and current financial situation didn't justify it.


No worries, a lot of people ITT have been sending in competing offers for negotiation. I don't think any of them have gotten a response back yet. I think if you have a better offer from a peer school they will consider it and may adjust accordingly. Good luck.

adam1
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Re: IN AT UPENN

Postby adam1 » Tue Mar 29, 2011 11:57 am

r6_philly wrote:
adam1 wrote:Can I humbly ask for advice?
I hope the answer is yes, as I am about to do so.

I received a very generous aid offer from Penn (sorry in advance. I hope we all get what we need, and I know that this process is anything but fair.) I'm wondering if there is a maximum aid package (that is, merit+need) because I'm thinking of asking for more in merit based on competing offers. My concern is that at best they'll add more merit scholarship and take way from need-based grant; in other words, they'll just reject my request.

Does this make any sense? Anybody have any insight?

For disclosure, I am trying to cover the relatively small amount that I'd be taking on in PLUS loans, and, FWIW, I wouldn't be seeking to do so if my background and current financial situation didn't justify it.


So you mean, you love your offer, but you want more, but you are fine with what you have?

Ask, and maybe you get more, maybe you don't, but you'd be happy right? Congrats! :)


I guess you're right. :oops: Basically, the PLUS loan situation feels like a real obstacle for me because even this relatively small amount is more money than I've ever been in any contact with.

r6_philly
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Re: IN AT UPENN

Postby r6_philly » Tue Mar 29, 2011 12:00 pm

adam1 wrote:I guess you're right. :oops: Basically, the PLUS loan situation feels like a real obstacle for me because even this relatively small amount is more money than I've ever been in any contact with.


I know what you mean, but think of the salary ranges you will be dealing with. And I think you are already in a much much better position than most (read above). PLUS is still fed loans, so you should be ok.

adam1
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Re: IN AT UPENN

Postby adam1 » Tue Mar 29, 2011 12:16 pm

r6_philly wrote:
adam1 wrote:I guess you're right. :oops: Basically, the PLUS loan situation feels like a real obstacle for me because even this relatively small amount is more money than I've ever been in any contact with.


I know what you mean, but think of the salary ranges you will be dealing with. And I think you are already in a much much better position than most (read above). PLUS is still fed loans, so you should be ok.


Granted. Seriously, I've been lurking for a long time, and seeing TLS people whom I recognize not get good money makes me wish I could share my grants and such.

Also, you're probably an excellent parent haha

r6_philly
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Re: IN AT UPENN

Postby r6_philly » Tue Mar 29, 2011 12:26 pm

adam1 wrote:
Granted. Seriously, I've been lurking for a long time, and seeing TLS people whom I recognize not get good money makes me wish I could share my grants and such.

Also, you're probably an excellent parent haha


Well keep your grants, make money, and share some of the money ;) (my plan)

Haha jury is still out, but I hope so :)

parsi
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Re: IN AT UPENN

Postby parsi » Tue Mar 29, 2011 2:00 pm

I am so confused as to how they calculated this needd aid.

Neither my parents nor I have any assets, and we both made sub 20K last year. The finaid website said they expect 40k from my family for one year... which is more than my parents made in the past 2 years combined

I dont know if they assessed my file incorrectly or if i really just dont qualify. i emailed them about it but their responsed just said that merit aid will be coming out more in the beginning of april

r6_philly
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Re: IN AT UPENN

Postby r6_philly » Tue Mar 29, 2011 2:02 pm

parsi wrote:I am so confused as to how they calculated this needd aid.

Neither my parents nor I have any assets, and we both made sub 20K last year. The finaid website said they expect 40k from my family for one year... which is more than my parents made in the past 2 years combined

I dont know if they assessed my file incorrectly or if i really just dont qualify. i emailed them about it but their responsed just said that merit aid will be coming out more in the beginning of april


Call them. Or go see them if you are physically in the area. That doesn't sound right but I don't know what's in your file.

c_dubya_s
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Re: IN AT UPENN

Postby c_dubya_s » Tue Mar 29, 2011 2:10 pm

If this helps any, I've always read Penn's "parental contribution" as another term for a PLUS loan. In the financial aid worksheet, it says:

Students can borrow to cover the Estimated Family Contribution. Click on the Payment Options Tab to apply for an Alternative Loan to cover any additional costs not covered by grants, recommended loans, or personal resources. You can also choose our monthly budgeting program. This is a convenient way to pay educational costs over a ten month period without interest.


Under the Payment Options tab, it says:

Many students will need funding beyond the Federal Direct Loan limit to meet their total cost of education. Graduate students can choose between the Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan (Grad PLUS) and an alternative private student loan program.

r6_philly
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Re: IN AT UPENN

Postby r6_philly » Tue Mar 29, 2011 2:22 pm

PLUS can be used to cover any expected contribution. You can always use family funds, loans from friends, and private loans. You can pay that part in anyway you want, that's why it's not designated as PLUS loans. You can choose PLUS only if you want.

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The Stig
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Re: IN AT UPENN

Postby The Stig » Tue Mar 29, 2011 10:28 pm

For those who would like it, here are my thoughts of the ASW this weekend!

I will again premise these comments by noting that I am on general a positive person, and tend to see things in a positive light. There has yet to be a law school visit that I have not enjoyed. Worth noting is that this will be a combination of summary and reflection on the experience  Also, I apologize in advance for any typographical errors, I am writing this on my iPhone (ironically enough) on a flight to Philly. Before beginning, it is also worth noting that I have never been to Philly or Penn before, and that my finances were I to attend Penn would be advantageous. 

I arrived late on Thursday night, so I didn't get a chance to make it to the TLS meet-up that day. The day started early on Friday, and I happened to find myself at a breakfast table of TLSers. To be honest, Friday was a blur. We essentially went 9am til midnight, so I can't exactly remember what happened in what order.

There were a variety of panels and presentations throughout the day. The clinic panel seemed to be pretty standard, as did the career services panel. Keep in mind, "standard" in this context means compared to peer schools I have visited (Michigan, Chicago, Duke). They do have some regional interview rounds before the formal OCI in Philly, which sounds awesome for those not interested in the biggest legal markets.  Although, it was interesting when the career services officer didn't answer a question about OCI placement rate. She explained that some students only interview with one government agency at there, so the figure wouldn't be representative. However, she did note that "even though she hasn't looked at it" (or something like that), it was better this year than last year. To be honest, this lack of disclosure was a bit discomforting. To address her first point, it would be relatively easy to calculate the number for only those who interviewed at more than 3 offices, eliminating any disadvantage of people only interviewing at one place. The student on the panel was confident that people did "excellent" and no one during the weekend seemed stressed about jobs, so I am hardly concerned about job prospects at Penn (I am sure they do quite well!)....if someone at a later ASW wants to inquire about this, I would be interested to hear the figure just for the heck of it.

The cross-disciplinary presentation stood out the most to me. For me, this is really exciting about law school in general, as I have a relatively interdisciplinary undergrad major, and have really enjoyed it. Penn noted that it has excellent other graduate schools in which to take courses, and while this is true, I think that it is inaccurate to say that Penn is the only T14 to have great other grad programs. That said, they do seem to encourage students to take courses (up to 4 total, in comparison to duke's 2). They also have a ton of joint degree programs, which while they don't interest me personally, I think it would contribute very much to a more well-rounded group of classmates in law school classes, and these opportunities definitely contribute to that. The Wharton certificate seems to be a big hit with the students (3 classes, Wharton brand on the resume).

During the day, we took a tour of the law school. It is interesting in that a big portion of it is old/ivy style and a big portion is modern. Lots of people uploaded pictures, so I don't think I need to add any to illustrate it. It was a bit hard to judge the facilities as a whole, as about a quarter of it is still under construction, and should be done for second semester of next year. Something that I really liked was their style of mixing classrooms/offices/administration-apparently it makes for a good mixing of all parts of the law school. This was similar to how UChicago places prof offices in the library so it is almost impossible not to interact with faculty. The library was nice, with a good mix of study spaces, but nothing out of the ordinary.

For me, the most valuable part of visiting schools has been spending time with the students/faculty/admits. There were plenty of opportunities for this on Friday (and Saturday too). Lunch with the faculty was great, as it was really easy to connect with the faculty member at our table. It is clear that the faculty feel a close connection to the students and are really supportive of what they do. The students there were awesome as well, especially Rachel, the head of the post-acceptance committee. Though I think she was in charge of a lot of the weekend, she always found time to talk to us when we had questions. The formal events ended with a cocktail reception, which was really fun! Dinner with students followed, then a bar night. Throughout all these, the students were very candid and helpful in answering any questions about Penn. Their motto seemed to be "work hard, play hard" and it definitely was evident in everyone's attitude. 

The other admits were awesome as well, I was super impressed by everyone's comments in the mock class on the really dense civpro reading (though it is worth noting that one kid did pass when called on). 

Saturday was definitely more laid-back, beginning with a trolley tour and some more panels. Cheesesteaks were served for lunch, with more opportunities to meet with current students. The clerkship panel in the afternoon was excellent-it removed any doubt in mind that I'd like to pursue a clerkship at some point. Two of the students were EICs of the law review (one of them will be clerking for Roberts) and they other two were on law review, so I'm not sure what the clerkship prospects looks like for those not on LR (they mentioned high grades as a necessary condition, so I'd imagine not great).

On Saturday we also took a tour of the campus, which was fun. It is definitely more urban than I expected, but I suppose I am coming from a college town where there isn't a "bad" part of town. I felt the "ivy-ness" when walking down the main locust walk. I can imagine the campus is incredibly pretty once some leaves show up on the trees.

All in all, it was an awesome weekend. The people were great, and the vibe was what I am looking for. I feel like I got to know Penn really well, and could see myself as a student there!

If anyone has any questions about my comments, feel free to ask-I know I met a ton of TLSers there, so we would all be happy to answer!
Last edited by The Stig on Thu Mar 31, 2011 7:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.

c_dubya_s
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Re: IN AT UPENN

Postby c_dubya_s » Wed Mar 30, 2011 11:49 am

Thanks for the overview Stig! Sorry I didn't get to stay for the clerkship panel-sounds like it was great.

For those negotiating scholarships, did you get any confirmation that your negotiation email had been received?

4102011
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Re: IN AT UPENN

Postby 4102011 » Wed Mar 30, 2011 11:50 am

When I sent my negotiation email back in February it took them like a week to respond that they'd gotten mine, though maybe they've gotten speedier about such things since then.

sonervous88
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Re: IN AT UPENN

Postby sonervous88 » Wed Mar 30, 2011 12:06 pm

parsi wrote:I am so confused as to how they calculated this needd aid.

Neither my parents nor I have any assets, and we both made sub 20K last year. The finaid website said they expect 40k from my family for one year... which is more than my parents made in the past 2 years combined

I dont know if they assessed my file incorrectly or if i really just dont qualify. i emailed them about it but their responsed just said that merit aid will be coming out more in the beginning of april


+1 i'm in the exact same situation. absolutely nothing. :( it sucks because i very desperately want to go!

lolok
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Re: IN AT UPENN

Postby lolok » Wed Mar 30, 2011 1:59 pm

Although, it was interesting when the career services officer didn't answer a question about OCI placement rate. She explained that some students only interview with one government agency at there, so the figure wouldn't be representative. However, she did note that "even though she hasn't looked at it" (or something like that), it was better this year than last year. To be honest, this lack of disclosure was a bit discomforting. To address her first point, it would be relatively easy to calculate the number for only those who interviewed at more than 3 offices, eliminating any disadvantage of people only interviewing at one place.


I'm glad other people were concerned about this as well..she really did contradict herself and I'm pretty sure she was lying when she said she hadn't looked at the data. It was really weird how she skirted around the question.

hoping
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Re: IN AT UPENN

Postby hoping » Wed Mar 30, 2011 2:04 pm

still crickets from them about my fin aid..wondering if i should send them an email about my other offers...?

r6_philly
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Re: IN AT UPENN

Postby r6_philly » Wed Mar 30, 2011 2:05 pm

lolok wrote:I'm glad other people were concerned about this as well..she really did contradict herself and I'm pretty sure she was lying when she said she hadn't looked at the data. It was really weird how she skirted around the question.


Apparently there is the same issue with career services at UVA about skirting around the difficult job market. Maybe they all do it just we won't get too turned off. Maybe they are down playing it. All I know is the whole session by career services are about professional development how to interview better.

c_dubya_s
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Re: IN AT UPENN

Postby c_dubya_s » Wed Mar 30, 2011 3:48 pm

For those who might be interested-the reply to my negotiating email said that my information had been forwarded to the merit scholarships commitee, which hopes to have the majority of their decisions made by the second week in April.

Edit: Although they did say that merit decisions would be made on a rolling basis, and would continue all the way up until the deposit deadline.

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src42
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Re: IN AT UPENN

Postby src42 » Wed Mar 30, 2011 3:52 pm

c_dubya_s wrote:For those who might be interested-the reply to my negotiating email said that my information had been forwarded to the merit scholarships commitee, which hopes to have the majority of their decisions made by the second week in April.

Edit: Although they did say that merit decisions would be made on a rolling basis, and would continue all the way up until the deposit deadline.
Cool, thanks.

So, I just got in yesterday. Do you guys think I should send the offers I've received now or wait and see if they make me an initial offer to try and negotiate?

r6_philly
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Re: IN AT UPENN

Postby r6_philly » Wed Mar 30, 2011 3:54 pm

src42 wrote:So, I just got in yesterday. Do you guys think I should send the offers I've received now or wait and see if they make me an initial offer to try and negotiate?


I'd send it now.

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src42
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Re: IN AT UPENN

Postby src42 » Wed Mar 30, 2011 3:55 pm

r6_philly wrote:
src42 wrote:So, I just got in yesterday. Do you guys think I should send the offers I've received now or wait and see if they make me an initial offer to try and negotiate?


I'd send it now.
Got it, thanks. I really want Penn to be a feasible option...

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dpk711
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Re: IN AT UPENN

Postby dpk711 » Thu Mar 31, 2011 2:58 am

Can previous admits tell me how long after they received their call that their Penn acceptance package to arrived via mail?

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jpk5372
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Re: IN AT UPENN

Postby jpk5372 » Sat Apr 02, 2011 9:12 am

Is anyone else having trouble with the financial aid counselor website?

r6_philly
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Re: IN AT UPENN

Postby r6_philly » Sat Apr 02, 2011 2:29 pm

jpk5372 wrote:Is anyone else having trouble with the financial aid counselor website?


It was working fine for me just now.

bmore
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Re: IN AT UPENN

Postby bmore » Sat Apr 02, 2011 4:58 pm

Hopefully it means they are working on your file :P . Mine too :wink:

degibogen214
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Re: IN AT UPENN

Postby degibogen214 » Sun Apr 03, 2011 2:35 pm

Hey guys,

I was admitted in January- and still haven't received any email regarding merit scholarship money. Is this unusual ?




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