Negotiating scholarships works!!!!!

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Beachbum89
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Re: Negotiating scholarships works!!!!!

Postby Beachbum89 » Sat Jan 28, 2012 4:05 am

So I'm going to be sending a letter off to one of my top choices requesting more merit aid. Obviously I'm going to list other scholarships I've received but was wondering what people thought about mentioning the following as well:

1. The school I'm trying to get more money from is part of public university system that has drastically increased tuition for both undergraduate and graduate programs over the last few years. In other words, tuition at this school has risen much faster than at the other law schools I'm considering. I was thinking about saying something like the uncertainty about tuition costs over a three year period at your school compared to other schools is a drawback.

2. My dad is an alumni of one of the law schools that gave me a very hefty scholarship. Is it worth saying that my dad is pushing me to go there?

3. Should I simply list the scholarship offers of each school or should I list the offers and then the total debt after three years (with cost of living included)?

4. Do I ask the school to match one of the offers, increase their offer, make it more competitive? What's the best wording?

Thanks for any input.

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kroakstool
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Re: Negotiating scholarships works!!!!!

Postby kroakstool » Sat Jan 28, 2012 5:54 am

Beachbum89 wrote:So I'm going to be sending a letter off to one of my top choices requesting more merit aid. Obviously I'm going to list other scholarships I've received but was wondering what people thought about mentioning the following as well:

1. The school I'm trying to get more money from is part of public university system that has drastically increased tuition for both undergraduate and graduate programs over the last few years. In other words, tuition at this school has risen much faster than at the other law schools I'm considering. I was thinking about saying something like the uncertainty about tuition costs over a three year period at your school compared to other schools is a drawback.

2. My dad is an alumni of one of the law schools that gave me a very hefty scholarship. Is it worth saying that my dad is pushing me to go there?

3. Should I simply list the scholarship offers of each school or should I list the offers and then the total debt after three years (with cost of living included)?

4. Do I ask the school to match one of the offers, increase their offer, make it more competitive? What's the best wording?

Thanks for any input.




I would leave out the part about uncertainty. They probably see rising tuition rates as an issue at any school. The dad thing is a huge deal, telling them that they are your top choice, but that you can't rationalize going to that school when your father is pushing you to go to his alma mater for cheap could be very effective. Next, I would definitely mention the scholarships from other schools, but only mention the total debt if it is less than the school you are negotiating with. That sounds obvious but some people need to be told that lol. I would suggest asking for something more competitive. I think that's the most effective wording..They'll know what a competitive offer is when they see the other scholarship offers. And if you aren't satisfied with that offer, at most schools you can continue to negotiate.

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wamanda
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Re: Negotiating scholarships works!!!!!

Postby wamanda » Sat Jan 28, 2012 9:03 pm

Cornelius wrote:I'm curious how people are wording certain requests. If you get more money somewhere else, the logic and request is simple - ask them to match. When you're asking the school that's already given you the highest award, though, to give you more because "a better school accepted me/gave me almost as much money" it's harder to think of what to say without saying something to that effect.


Since schools are often painfully aware of being lower than others in rank, you generally don't need to do anything beyond informing them of the offer. Just email them, explain the offer as a new development that is making your decision more difficult, and politely inquire whether it would be possible to increase your merit aid. When I was negotiating between UCLA (offering $120K) and Michigan (offering $60K), I discussed the specific differences I perceived between the schools without directly mentioning rank. For instance, I mentioned that I was concerned that Michigan might give me more national reach, which is important to me, since I am not sure where I want to practice. I also mentioned Michigan's superior LRAP. You can throw in little details like that to make your request stronger, but for many schools, it may already be obvious that they need to throw more aid your way to justify the difference in rank.

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wamanda
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Re: Negotiating scholarships works!!!!!

Postby wamanda » Sat Jan 28, 2012 9:11 pm

kroakstool wrote:When I'm negotiating, would it be a good idea to talk about my ties to the school? Like my sister is in undergrad there and both of my in-laws are alumni. Is this a good idea or would this make it seem like that is where I will end up anyways so there is no reason to offer more scholarship money?


It's always good to mention the pros and the cons (a.k.a. the pros of a competing school) in a negotiation letter. "I am eager to attend X because (family ties, great teachers, blah blah blah). However, I have received a competing offer from Y." Then you can either mention how the cost difference will impact your decision (if Y's offer is greater) or the extra opportunities Y may provide (see above post).

But saying good things about the school you are writing to is great. Obviously, don't write them a dissertation on how awesome they are, but they want to know that you are actually invested in them and exciting about attending, not just using them as a pawn in negotiations with a better school. :wink:

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puremorning
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Re: Negotiating scholarships works!!!!!

Postby puremorning » Sat Jan 28, 2012 9:40 pm

Super anal question, but I literally can't write a negotiation letter until I know this: to whom should you address the negotiation letter if you're just sending it to the admissions/financial aid dept? Dear [name of school], To whom it may concern, etc?

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wamanda
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Re: Negotiating scholarships works!!!!!

Postby wamanda » Sat Jan 28, 2012 10:00 pm

Definitely no to whom it may concern. I would say something like "Dear admissions (or financial aid) committee" or address it to the dean of that particular department.

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puremorning
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Re: Negotiating scholarships works!!!!!

Postby puremorning » Sat Jan 28, 2012 11:54 pm

wamanda wrote:Definitely no to whom it may concern. I would say something like "Dear admissions (or financial aid) committee" or address it to the dean of that particular department.


Perfect, thank you.

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kroakstool
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Re: Negotiating scholarships works!!!!!

Postby kroakstool » Sun Jan 29, 2012 6:23 am

puremorning wrote:
wamanda wrote:Definitely no to whom it may concern. I would say something like "Dear admissions (or financial aid) committee" or address it to the dean of that particular department.


Perfect, thank you.


I had this question too. Thanks for the help

Kage3212
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Re: Negotiating scholarships works!!!!!

Postby Kage3212 » Sun Jan 29, 2012 4:12 pm

This thread has been very informative in helping me draft a negotiation letter; unfortunately, the school I sent my negotiation email to informed me quickly that I was not qualified to receive merit aid. My situation was such: I had a peer school offer me 15k/year, another school offer me 5k/year and an acceptance at a much higher ranked school. I noted all these factor and was told by the school that I was negotiating with that because my lsat is one point below their median I do not qualify for merit aid. My question for all of you is where does this leave me now? My GPA exceeds their 75th% by about .3 points (big splitter); is this something I should bring up in a follow-up email? I currently have 4 other apps pending and am trying to get off a WL to a higher ranked school with much lower tuition. Do you think I should wait and see how my cycle plays out before sending another negotiation email? Any and all help is appreciated.

bobbyh1919
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Re: Negotiating scholarships works!!!!!

Postby bobbyh1919 » Sun Jan 29, 2012 5:17 pm

It sounds to me like their answer was pretty clear. I'm always of the mindset that it doesn't hurt to ask, but based on their reasoning (not giving out merit aid below the median LSAT), it doesn't seem like another e-mail would do anything productive.

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Cornelius
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Re: Negotiating scholarships works!!!!!

Postby Cornelius » Mon Jan 30, 2012 11:20 am

wamanda wrote:
Cornelius wrote:I'm curious how people are wording certain requests. If you get more money somewhere else, the logic and request is simple - ask them to match. When you're asking the school that's already given you the highest award, though, to give you more because "a better school accepted me/gave me almost as much money" it's harder to think of what to say without saying something to that effect.


Since schools are often painfully aware of being lower than others in rank, you generally don't need to do anything beyond informing them of the offer. Just email them, explain the offer as a new development that is making your decision more difficult, and politely inquire whether it would be possible to increase your merit aid. When I was negotiating between UCLA (offering $120K) and Michigan (offering $60K), I discussed the specific differences I perceived between the schools without directly mentioning rank. For instance, I mentioned that I was concerned that Michigan might give me more national reach, which is important to me, since I am not sure where I want to practice. I also mentioned Michigan's superior LRAP. You can throw in little details like that to make your request stronger, but for many schools, it may already be obvious that they need to throw more aid your way to justify the difference in rank.

Great! Thanks for sharing your experience.

tolson1
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Re: Negotiating scholarships works!!!!!

Postby tolson1 » Mon Jan 30, 2012 11:28 am

I sent in a letter inquiring about increased scholly's about three-four weeks ago. I still haven't heard anything.

In the letter I discussed being very interested in their institution, its close proximity to home, good reputation blah blah blah.. Discussed how, given current award, I would still have a substantial amount of debt, and that I have been given the opportunity to attend another institution tuition free.

What should I do? I don't want to be THAT guy that continuously sends in emails, but should I follow up?

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wamanda
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Re: Negotiating scholarships works!!!!!

Postby wamanda » Mon Jan 30, 2012 11:39 am

tolson1 wrote:I sent in a letter inquiring about increased scholly's about three-four weeks ago. I still haven't heard anything.

In the letter I discussed being very interested in their institution, its close proximity to home, good reputation blah blah blah.. Discussed how, given current award, I would still have a substantial amount of debt, and that I have been given the opportunity to attend another institution tuition free.

What should I do? I don't want to be THAT guy that continuously sends in emails, but should I follow up?


I would definitely follow up. 3-4 weeks is plenty of time.

llachans
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Re: Negotiating scholarships works!!!!!

Postby llachans » Wed Feb 01, 2012 8:11 pm

A school wants proof of my other offers. What's the best way to include them? Can I just scan them and then add them as e-mail attachments?

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splitbrain
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Re: Negotiating scholarships works!!!!!

Postby splitbrain » Wed Feb 01, 2012 8:26 pm

llachans wrote:A school wants proof of my other offers. What's the best way to include them? Can I just scan them and then add them as e-mail attachments?


Scanning and attaching them as PDF's sounds like a good idea to me. Just make sure the file size isn't crazy for whatever reason.

"Dear Blargh,

Attached are the letters that were requested. Please let me know if you need any further information.

Thank you for your time,
Blargh Blarghington"

or something along those lines...

llachans
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Re: Negotiating scholarships works!!!!!

Postby llachans » Wed Feb 01, 2012 9:09 pm

splitbrain wrote:
Scanning and attaching them as PDF's sounds like a good idea to me. Just make sure the file size isn't crazy for whatever reason.

"Dear Blargh,

Attached are the letters that were requested. Please let me know if you need any further information.

Thank you for your time,
Blargh Blarghington"

or something along those lines...


Awesome! Thanks : )

rahrah
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Re: Negotiating scholarships works!!!!!

Postby rahrah » Thu Feb 02, 2012 2:03 pm

I want to try negotiating a larger scholarship with one of my top choice schools, but so far I've only received word from 1 other "peer" school (which is slightly higher ranked and offered me more money). Should I go ahead and use that or wait a little longer to see if I get other higher offers from other peer schools?

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Unagi
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Re: Negotiating scholarships works!!!!!

Postby Unagi » Thu Feb 02, 2012 2:24 pm

rahrah wrote:I want to try negotiating a larger scholarship with one of my top choice schools, but so far I've only received word from 1 other "peer" school (which is slightly higher ranked and offered me more money). Should I go ahead and use that or wait a little longer to see if I get other higher offers from other peer schools?


I think it depends on the school you're trying to negotiate with.
I've sent an email to Mich and they told me they only negotiate once, so it would be better for me to wait until I have more offers to show them.
wamanda negotiated with UCLA several times. Each time she received a new offer she would tell them and the result was amazing! By the way wamanda, you're my inspiration lol
Try to see how your school handles negotiation. And I think it also depends on how much more money the peer school offered you. If it is not that much I would wait.

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wamanda
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Re: Negotiating scholarships works!!!!!

Postby wamanda » Thu Feb 02, 2012 11:21 pm

Unagi wrote:By the way wamanda, you're my inspiration lol


Why, thank ya. ::tips hat::

tjos
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Re: Negotiating scholarships works!!!!!

Postby tjos » Mon Feb 06, 2012 2:34 pm

Anyone had any experience negotiating with Pepperdine?

rockydbull
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Re: Negotiating scholarships works!!!!!

Postby rockydbull » Tue Feb 07, 2012 7:45 am

OK what are your takes on negotiating with higher ranked schools. I got into FSU, FIU, UM, and Arkansas. I am originally from Florida and only applied to Arkansas on the insistence of a LOR writer. I had an app waiver so it seemed worth it to make them happy. Well fast forward a month and I am admitted to all of the schools but Arkansas is the only one giving me scholly money and its pretty good at about 13k the first year for out of state and 6k for year 2 and year 3 instate.

I really would like to go to FSU but tuition is creeping up to around 20k a year and its hard to turn down the price of Arkansas. How can I go about asking FSU to match or atleast meet me somewhere between full price and Arkansas?

thanks in advance TLSers

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ClassyKelly
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Re: Negotiating scholarships works!!!!!

Postby ClassyKelly » Tue Feb 07, 2012 9:15 am

Sent email to the Dean at UGA who signed my scholarship award letter. My email noted the reasons why I'm interested in UGA and the offer that I received from Wake (which was way higher and left me with less tuition/fees). Also included info about volunteer work I've done over the past year (out of the country) which prevented me from working / earning income.

It's been an entire week and I've heard nothing. Does anyone know anything about UGA's scholarship negotiation policy or their trends with regard to granting increases?

tnunz612
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Re: Negotiating scholarships works!!!!!

Postby tnunz612 » Tue Feb 07, 2012 12:28 pm

What are you guys putting for the subject of your email?

srfngdd6
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Re: Negotiating scholarships works!!!!!

Postby srfngdd6 » Tue Feb 07, 2012 12:33 pm

rockydbull wrote:OK what are your takes on negotiating with higher ranked schools. I got into FSU, FIU, UM, and Arkansas. I am originally from Florida and only applied to Arkansas on the insistence of a LOR writer. I had an app waiver so it seemed worth it to make them happy. Well fast forward a month and I am admitted to all of the schools but Arkansas is the only one giving me scholly money and its pretty good at about 13k the first year for out of state and 6k for year 2 and year 3 instate.

I really would like to go to FSU but tuition is creeping up to around 20k a year and its hard to turn down the price of Arkansas. How can I go about asking FSU to match or atleast meet me somewhere between full price and Arkansas?

thanks in advance TLSers


I don't think FSU would be inclined to offer you much if anything based on a scholly offer from Arkansas

rockydbull
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Re: Negotiating scholarships works!!!!!

Postby rockydbull » Tue Feb 07, 2012 1:23 pm

srfngdd6 wrote:
rockydbull wrote:OK what are your takes on negotiating with higher ranked schools. I got into FSU, FIU, UM, and Arkansas. I am originally from Florida and only applied to Arkansas on the insistence of a LOR writer. I had an app waiver so it seemed worth it to make them happy. Well fast forward a month and I am admitted to all of the schools but Arkansas is the only one giving me scholly money and its pretty good at about 13k the first year for out of state and 6k for year 2 and year 3 instate.

I really would like to go to FSU but tuition is creeping up to around 20k a year and its hard to turn down the price of Arkansas. How can I go about asking FSU to match or atleast meet me somewhere between full price and Arkansas?

thanks in advance TLSers


I don't think FSU would be inclined to offer you much if anything based on a scholly offer from Arkansas


Thats not good to hear. I really like FSU but its hard to argue with so much less debt especially considering FSU and Arkansas have a similar reach in terms of jobs




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