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How to change your mind/intent...

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Not sure if this is the right place for this post but here goes...

So by April 15th, and I had not heard from all of the schools I applied to but one of my acceptances was to one of my top choices so I told them of my intent to enroll. Fast forward to now and I recently heard from one of the other schools I was waiting on. They have offered me a 3 years support which includes a stipend and tuition waiver. The first school offered me nothing, but my POI was willing to bring me on as a Research Assistant. 

My dilemma is how to tell School 1 that I no longer plan to enroll? Earlier on my POI and I both had a very candid conversation about the lack of funding at the institution so I know (or least I hope) that she will understand the amazing opportunity that I have been offered. Would it be okay to call her personally and inform her of this? Obviously, I would make my official notice to the program director and school via email, but I feel that it would be respectful to reach out to her personally since she has already done so much to help me and we have a rapport.

Lastly, would it be improper to ask POI if any funding opportunities are on the horizon that would make attending School 1 over School 2 viable? I really like School 1, but I already have debt from my Master's degree so I can't imagine taking on an additional $50K+.


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What you said makes perfect sense and should be accepted by any reasonable person. I'd both reach out to the POI and to the school more officially. In case you prefer school 1, I think it's entirely sensible to write your POI to say that you have this other offer that you can't pass on because of the finances, but you'd prefer to go to school 1 if they can match this offer. Let them see what they can do, and go from there. If they can't do anything for you, write the school and your POI to let them know of your intent to decline. I can't imagine anyone being upset, especially if you've already had a conversation about money in the past. You also shouldn't worry about burning a bridge by going to school 2, as long as you're professional and polite about it. Again, this is an entirely sensible decision. 

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