im not saying people don’t commonly use MS/TA ships to reduce debt, they do. I don’t know the numbers but I would certainly guess even most do one, other, or both at various times. I’m saying I would not simply plug in those numbers and assume they’ll be a part of your financial aid package because they aren’t 100% guaranteed. Also without yet attending here I think it would be difficult to accurately predict how much effort you would be able to apply to MS/TA/Valley each quarter for every quarter you attend in advance. Clerkship years make this even a little trickier. I think it would be far more irresponsible to tell you otherwise.It looks like a lot of people are getting the same finaid that I got. So how in the world does Stanford have one of the lowest average indebtedness in the country? Isn't it because of programs like medscholars or TAing? Or are the only people that actually end up being able to go to Stanford people who demonstrate 100% need or very rich kids whose parents pay for them?
i also think it’s a misrepresentation of our financial aid policy to say only those with 100% need will get aid. My family is not low income currently by any stretch of the imagination and I know that because I grew up low income (<30k family income). I am getting significant aid to come here in addition to loans. My parents aren’t paying for my schooling, but I also know that if anything happened to me like my car needed repairing, I got into an accident, or whatever they could have my back in a pinch. They are a safety net for me. There are people here who save their stipend aggressively because *they* are the safety net for their family. The option they may have been presented with without Stanford’s aid would not have been “go into debt for Stanford and compromise about ways to service it in the long run” or “choose a more generous offer”. It simply wouldn’t have been an option at all. That’s what I mean when I say “keep things in perspective”.
I hope I’m not coming off as judgemental or minimize anyone’s disappointment which is valid. Trust me, I know where you’re coming from. I’m just trying to highlight what people from different SES backgrounds might feel reading some of these comments. Would be great if Stanford used their money to go 100% completely debt free for all, and I do think they have that ability in purely material terms, but they’ve chosen to use the gift in a way that prioritizes those with highest need while taking into account full COA and. not just tuition and in the grand scheme of things I think that’s a better approach than something like tuition free which doesn’t account for high cost of living and disproportionately advantages those with access to credit or whose parents can serve as guarantors to help find housing in high cost areas. Do I think we can do better? Always. Anyways, that’s my last comment on the subject. I hope everyone that wants to come here gets to attend but I know that’s not always possible and wish you all the best in the decision making process which can be very stressful in and of itself, I know it was the most stressful part of my cycle.