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Asking for a larger fellowship offer


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I was accepted to multiple schools (both public and private) that offered me different amounts of scholarship money (30% to 50% off). I was told by a friend that I should contact the schools and ask if they would increase their offers before I commit to one. I can see how I would have nothing to lose by doing this, however I also feel like there is a limited amount of money to give out and that inquiring about getting more could come off as kind of greedy. Any suggestions?

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I'm in a similar situation with 50% funding. I talked to a graduate adviser at my undergrad institution today and she said that it can never hurt to ask. However, I'm still curious to hear if anyone has done this and been successful.

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It's not greedy; it's practical.

Schools are used to having to compete with each other for grad students and they frequently are expecting you to ask them to match other offers.

I had this happen to me last year. I very naively and unintentionally ended up playing two rival schools off each other. Because I mentioned to one that I was considering the offer of the other, the school started talking about giving me further scholarships. I went back to the other school with this information and they promptly added another lucrative RA-ship to my package.

The advice I have been given from advisors is to actually plan for this eventuality.

In fact, some of the letters I've received this year actually mention how they anticipate my receiving other offers and how they will do their best to match competing packages.

Just be very polite and appreciative and respectful when you bring up the matter. But don't sell yourself short. A good grad student will be a good resource to the school and they know it.

Good luck! :)

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A friend of mine worked in the graduate admissions office of the program I want to do and said that it is definitely okay to do it. I got a pretty good scholarship from my #1 school and felt weird asking for more money, but did it anyway. I'll hear from the school within the next week or so, so I can't tell you how it turned out, but no one acted like I was wrong to ask. In fact, everyone has been really helpful and kind so far.

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