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Negotiating with Schools for Additional Funding


ArsenicYellow
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I'm at the stage where I'm starting to figure out how to get additional funding with schools and figured I'd make a topic about it to discuss with others. Doing a little research, the consensus is that one should write a letter rather than call. They seemed to stress writing a physical letter rather than emailing, as it may come off as more sincere, but with the acceptance deadline approaching, a letter seems a little slow. What are your opinions on this? 

 

So far, these are the offers I've received. For anonymity sake, not that it really matters, I'll just number each school rather than name (though its pretty obvious which one is which). 

A.  8k/year scholarship and I can take up to 4 assistant ship positions a year, valued at 1,100 per position, equaling 4,400 per year. (acceptance deadline May 1st)

B. 5k scholarship with no word on any sort of assistant ship. (acceptance deadline April 5th)

C. Tuition waiver + 25% off their curriculum support fee as well as a stipend of 4k a year. (acceptance deadline April 15th)

 

I want to go to school A. They've offered me the most money, but that's due to school C's lower tuition. School A and B also have much higher cost of living due to being in the city. I'm waiting to hear back from my final two school, in hopes I will also get a good award from their schools, but I plan on contacting schools A, B, and C by the middle to end of this week. 

Edited by ArsenicYellow
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I'm at the stage where I'm starting to figure out how to get additional funding with schools and figured I'd make a topic about it to discuss with others. Doing a little research, the consensus is that one should write a letter rather than call. They seemed to stress writing a physical letter rather than emailing, as it may come off as more sincere, but with the acceptance deadline approaching, a letter seems a little slow. What are your opinions on this? 

 

So far, these are the offers I've received. For anonymity sake, not that it really matters, I'll just number each school rather than name (though its pretty obvious which one is which). 

A.  8k/year scholarship and I can take up to 4 assistant ship positions a year, valued at 1,100 per position, equaling 4,400 per year. (acceptance deadline May 1st)

B. 5k scholarship with no word on any sort of assistant ship. (acceptance deadline April 5th)

C. Tuition waiver + 25% off their curriculum support fee as well as a stipend of 4k a year. (acceptance deadline April 15th)

 

I want to go to school A. They've offered me the most money, but that's due to school C's lower tuition. School A and B also have much higher cost of living due to being in the city. I'm waiting to hear back from my final two school, in hopes I will also get a good award from their schools, but I plan on contacting schools A, B, and C by the middle to end of this week. 

I have a suggestion. 

Write a "letter" via email, meaning write it in a very formal "letter" format (most people don't even remember how to do this haha) 

meaning, compose it exactly the same way that you would if you were going to mail it. You could even send it as an attached word doc. so it also seems less like a regular old email.... just a thought. 

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I'm at the stage where I'm starting to figure out how to get additional funding with schools and figured I'd make a topic about it to discuss with others. Doing a little research, the consensus is that one should write a letter rather than call. They seemed to stress writing a physical letter rather than emailing, as it may come off as more sincere, but with the acceptance deadline approaching, a letter seems a little slow. What are your opinions on this? 

 

So far, these are the offers I've received. For anonymity sake, not that it really matters, I'll just number each school rather than name (though its pretty obvious which one is which). 

A.  8k/year scholarship and I can take up to 4 assistant ship positions a year, valued at 1,100 per position, equaling 4,400 per year. (acceptance deadline May 1st)

B. 5k scholarship with no word on any sort of assistant ship. (acceptance deadline April 5th)

C. Tuition waiver + 25% off their curriculum support fee as well as a stipend of 4k a year. (acceptance deadline April 15th)

 

I want to go to school A. They've offered me the most money, but that's due to school C's lower tuition. School A and B also have much higher cost of living due to being in the city. I'm waiting to hear back from my final two school, in hopes I will also get a good award from their schools, but I plan on contacting schools A, B, and C by the middle to end of this week. 

I would go with the one you "want" to go to more.  You will probably always regret it if you don't.  

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I would go with the one you "want" to go to more. You will probably always regret it if you don't.

Oh I'm going to that school, but I'm trying to figure out how to negotiate more money out of them.

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Oh I'm going to that school, but I'm trying to figure out how to negotiate more money out of them.

???

then why are you going into depth about the other schools?  To compare?  I don't think you should use the other schools' offers as a negotiation tool.  That sounds like you are trying to auction yourself off to the highest bidder.  

If you do write to them or call them, just talk about your own financial issues and leave the other schools out of it.

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Actually, according to faculty I've talked to and us.newsweek (http://www.usnews.com/education/best-graduate-schools/top-graduate-schools/paying/articles/2012/03/13/5-steps-to-getting-more-money-from-your-graduate-school) You should definitely be honest about other schools packages. I plan on asking them if there is any way to re-review my scholarship due to the high cost of living in boston. I plan on taking out the maximum federal loan amount allowed for the school, I was just mostly wondering if anyone else is going through this right now.

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I'v been told by multiple professors to be up front about other better offers.... Anything you can avoid paying you should. Even 3 or 5k doesnt sound like much but it makes a difference when you are considering loans for sure.

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Actually, according to faculty I've talked to and us.newsweek (http://www.usnews.com/education/best-graduate-schools/top-graduate-schools/paying/articles/2012/03/13/5-steps-to-getting-more-money-from-your-graduate-school) You should definitely be honest about other schools packages. I plan on asking them if there is any way to re-review my scholarship due to the high cost of living in boston. I plan on taking out the maximum federal loan amount allowed for the school, I was just mostly wondering if anyone else is going through this right now.

Do you have any idea what the maximum amounts are?  I know there are different factors, but do you know any numbers at all?  just wondering.... I have 3 kids, so i'm almost expecting to take loans no matter what, but i wonder how much you can borrow if you already have a significant amount of funding?  

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I have the same question and was about to start a topic on negotiating for more funding.

anyone who has done before? does negotiating actually have a slight chance to get you more funding??

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School C contacted me today to catch up with me, I told them I was waiting for a response from other schools, but they briefly mentioned to contact them if I had any concerns financing. This evening I sent out an email to him about my concerns, casually mentioning I have been offered packages from other schools, so we will see. I'll keep ya'll updated. 

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School C contacted me today to catch up with me, I told them I was waiting for a response from other schools, but they briefly mentioned to contact them if I had any concerns financing. This evening I sent out an email to him about my concerns, casually mentioning I have been offered packages from other schools, so we will see. I'll keep ya'll updated. 

Ooh. Nice. That's an ideal chance to indicate an interest in more aid.

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He said he would look into things for me, but indicated it was a low chance. I made sure not to tell them the exact schools or numbers just yet. I'm considering just emailing school A tonight. I can't decide if calling or emailing would be better. I'm afraid if I'd call, I'd end up saying the wrong thing or sounding rude, an email allows me to fully explain my situation.

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I have the same question and was about to start a topic on negotiating for more funding.

anyone who has done before? does negotiating actually have a slight chance to get you more funding??

Last year I was offered a merit scholarship but still couldn't have afforded to go, so I wrote a polite letter explaining my situation, put together all my financial info and documents into a tidy pdf (basically submitted my financial aid application again), and emailed it. They offered to increase my grant by third, which was quite impressive and generous, but in the end, I decided to wait another year.

Someone in another topic has said it is pointless to reapply to a school once you have turned them down for financial reasons, but I did just that and so far so good. As long as you are honest about your situation and demonstrate that you have made or are making a genuine effort and applying for all available outside funding (so even if you are unable to contribute towards your tuition, you aren't fully expecting the school to take care of you), I think all is fair game.

Edited by Lightswitch
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Sent out an email to school A early this morning (5amish), but no response yet. If I dont hear anything by thursday evening, I'll probably send a message out to the Financial Assistance. 

 

Edit: I contacted Graduate Programs because they handle the scholarships and not financial assistance. Also, the only reason I'mfreakingout is because they've always replied to me within a day of an email. I know I'm probably overreacting, butthiswhole graduate application process is one giant over exaggerated anxiety attack.

Edited by ArsenicYellow
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So a little update. Yesterday, while speaking to one of the professors at the school I plan on going to, I mentioned that I had sent an email out to the graduate program and hadnt heard back. She gave me the assistant dean's email address and told me to email her if I havent heard back from the assistant dean in a few days. I emailed the assistant dean yesterday around noon , still haven't heard back. It's beyond frustrating. If I don't hear anything by tomorrow evening I'll email the professor. I have a tour of the campus on Thursday, so I may end up bringing it up then. In the mean time, I'm touring apartments in Boston, have a weekend long convention to go to, trying to get hired in the city,  and  traveling to New Orleans next Tuesday, will be there for a week. I can't wait to be finished with this....

(keep in mind the initial email was sent aweek ago and there still hasnt been even one response back)

 

Edit: so apparently due to the snow we had last night, 5-8 inches. The school is closed today... I'm assuming that includes the offices. I guess I'll wait until the end of Thursday to contact the professor. 

Edited by ArsenicYellow
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  • 2 weeks later...

So a little update. Yesterday, while speaking to one of the professors at the school I plan on going to, I mentioned that I had sent an email out to the graduate program and hadnt heard back. She gave me the assistant dean's email address and told me to email her if I havent heard back from the assistant dean in a few days. I emailed the assistant dean yesterday around noon , still haven't heard back. It's beyond frustrating. If I don't hear anything by tomorrow evening I'll email the professor. I have a tour of the campus on Thursday, so I may end up bringing it up then. In the mean time, I'm touring apartments in Boston, have a weekend long convention to go to, trying to get hired in the city,  and  traveling to New Orleans next Tuesday, will be there for a week. I can't wait to be finished with this....

(keep in mind the initial email was sent aweek ago and there still hasnt been even one response back)

 

Edit: so apparently due to the snow we had last night, 5-8 inches. The school is closed today... I'm assuming that includes the offices. I guess I'll wait until the end of Thursday to contact the professor. 

 

any news arsenic?

I'm considering asking for more funding from 2 schools but I'm not sure how to go about it. How long/detailed was your letter and did you mention other offers?

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I don't know if this experience is helpful to anyone, but I managed to negotiate, however, through the head of the department I was applying through. I think if you have your heart set on a school, but don't get the best package from them, and you get better offers elsewhere, just let your top choice know that you really want to attend but that you do have other offers that are forcing you to really consider your other choices. And they should understand, the amount of student debt that's out there is a very serious matter. Also, if you can get a faculty member to fight for you, that's also really helpful, since everyone wants more money.

 

Just curious ArsenicYellow, which Boston school are you deciding on? I did my undergrad at BU, and took classes at Mass Art over the years. I have a lot of love for Boston! Best of luck!

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Sorry its been a while! I was busy with travel and visiting family and just came back today. Sadly, school A couldn't give anymore towards my scholarship, but if I take the maximum amount of assistant ships and include the scholarship, the tuition will be halved. I got a called that I've been accepted into Umass:amherst with tuition waiver and a TA position that seems to offer a lot of freedom, but at this point, I'll just accept school A's offer. 

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Hi everyone,

 

I got accepted to Calarts and received my financial aid information. However, I was not given very much - does anyone have experience with asking for more money? (have you been successful?) I know that it is very expensive to attend, and I am an international student, so I don't qualify for FAFSA. Any advice would be great! 

 

thank you.

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Hi everyone,

 

I got accepted to Calarts and received my financial aid information. However, I was not given very much - does anyone have experience with asking for more money? (have you been successful?) I know that it is very expensive to attend, and I am an international student, so I don't qualify for FAFSA. Any advice would be great! 

 

thank you.

do you have any other offers that you are considering that offer better funding?

the way I recently went about it was being open and honest about my situation and that although I'm very interested in X school, it's not feasible for me financially and I have to consider other offers. just be sincere and acknowledge that you don't want money to be the deciding factor but that's unfortunately the case.. and instead of directly asking for more money you can ask if there are any additional funding opportunities or work positions you can apply for to still make it work since X school is your top choice or something like that.

 

however, if you don't have other financially better offers that you are considering I wouldn't lie obviously..

 

I also get the sense that it helps if you contact the director of your specific program or a professor that you have been in contact with throughout the process as opposed to financial aid since they have a better sense of who you are and obviously want you in their program. they will probably then refer you to someone else but I think it's good to have someone vouch for you.

 

but I'm no expert on the grad admission/funding process by any means! just speaking from my own experience.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Hey everyone, I too am trying to negotiate!

I wrote a very polite email to the chair of the program I'm most interested in, explaining that another school has offered me more funding.

BUT here is my question: Should I include the amount the other school is offering me? or should I just plainly state that they're offering more? What do you guys think?

They've already raised my stipend after I told them about my financial situation but they didn't raise it by nearly enough so there has already been some correspondence on the issue at this point.

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Hey everyone, I too am trying to negotiate!

I wrote a very polite email to the chair of the program I'm most interested in, explaining that another school has offered me more funding.

BUT here is my question: Should I include the amount the other school is offering me? or should I just plainly state that they're offering more? What do you guys think?

They've already raised my stipend after I told them about my financial situation but they didn't raise it by nearly enough so there has already been some correspondence on the issue at this point.

 

The two schools I spoke with about negotiating more funding both asked me to send copies of the official offer letter from the school offering more funds (I just scanned and emailed them). One of the two schools actually invited me to send them any funding offers if I received them, so they could try to match it.

 

If that helps.

Edited by Ren Adams
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