I heard today from a dad named John, who got Rutgers to quadruple the academic scholarship that it is offering his daughter.
After hearing from John, Rutgers scotched the original $10,000 scholarship and replaced it with a $40,000 college scholarship instead.
How did he do it? It was simple.
On February 17, John sent an email to Rutger’s undergraduate admissions department that politely asked that the staff to reexamine the scholarship amount. Yesterday, he received a four-line email from an associate vice president at Rutgers that contained the fantastic news about the $40,000 scholarship.
“It was a huge surprise and good for RU and good for us that it worked,” John told me.
Many families assume that you can’t negotiate for a better financial aid package or merit scholarship from a college, but that’s not true. John said he learned that he could appeal after reading pages 34-37 in my book, The College Solution. (Hey, this looks like a shameless plug, but this is what he told me right down to the page numbers.)
Your chances of getting a fatter academic scholarship or financial aid award is greater if the university really wants your child. In this case, it looks like Rutgers might not have seen the teenager’s ACT score (32 out of a possible 36), which was excellent and instead used solid, but not phenomenal SAT scores. In this case, John only had to bring this to the attention of the admission office to get more money.
Not every request for a heftier college scholarship ends so wonderfully, but often it is worth a try.