dcham

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So I got into Columbia (my first choice) and I defintely want to go there. The problem is that it is very expensive and I'm not sure I can afford (my family isn't wealty at all and my folks can't contribute anything). I want to come out of school with as little debt as possible and I've heard that sometimes if you ask schools they will give you more. I also got into UT Southwestern, my state school, who gave me a pretty good scholarship. If I went to school there it would cost me about 1000 a year. So my question is how should I go about getting more money from Columbia? Should I wait until I get my finacial aid package in a month or so, or should I call them now and tell them that I got into UTSW and its really cheap, I really want to go here but I need more money? Who should I talk to? Thanks for the help.
 

doc05

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first off, don't assume columbia is a better choice just because it is an "elite" private school. frankly, I was underwhelmed on my interview visit and was glad to turn them down. second, southwestern is a very good school, and at just $1k/year, you'll be getting a real bargain.

if you really want to go to columbia, though, tell them exactly what your situation is, and what can they offer? speak with the dean of admissions and see if he can push financial aid in the right direction. keep in mind though that aid packages are recalculated every year, and there's no guarantee they'll be able to help you out next year. best of luck.
 
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dcham

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doc05 said:
first off, don't assume columbia is a better choice just because it is an "elite" private school. frankly, I was underwhelmed on my interview visit and was glad to turn them down. second, southwestern is a very good school, and at just $1k/year, you'll be getting a real bargain.

if you really want to go to columbia, though, tell them exactly what your situation is, and what can they offer? speak with the dean of admissions and see if he can push financial aid in the right direction. keep in mind though that aid packages are recalculated every year, and there's no guarantee they'll be able to help you out next year. best of luck.

Thanks, I'll give it a shot. Should I just call and ask to speak to a dean? Oh I realize that UTSW is a great school and I would love to go there. I'm from Texas though I kinda want to try something new and exciting like NYC. And while UT is certainly up there I want to do an MD/MPH program, and Columbia's school of public health is tops.
 

LoveDoc

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where do the TX funds come from to allow students to
pay such low tuition? we definitely need an AAMC/AMA/US
reform so that other schools can be so cheap.

sorry i didn't answer your question!
 
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dcham

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LoveDoc said:
where do the TX funds come from to allow students to
pay such low tuition? we definitely need an AAMC/AMA/US
reform so that other schools can be so cheap.

sorry i didn't answer your question!
That's alright. The Texas schools, minus Baylor, like other state schools, are funded by the State in which they are located. Different states fund their schools more or less depending on what the legislature feels like doing. Luckily for me Texas schools are among the cheapest but at the same time this is partly why the legislature passed a law saying that 90% of each med school class have to be residents of the lone star state.
 

PookieGirl

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dcham said:
So I got into Columbia (my first choice) and I defintely want to go there. The problem is that it is very expensive and I'm not sure I can afford (my family isn't wealty at all and my folks can't contribute anything). I want to come out of school with as little debt as possible and I've heard that sometimes if you ask schools they will give you more. I also got into UT Southwestern, my state school, who gave me a pretty good scholarship. If I went to school there it would cost me about 1000 a year. So my question is how should I go about getting more money from Columbia? Should I wait until I get my finacial aid package in a month or so, or should I call them now and tell them that I got into UTSW and its really cheap, I really want to go here but I need more money? Who should I talk to? Thanks for the help.
When you began this process, you probably knew that private schools are more expensive than public schools. Columbia would have to give you a LOT more aid to rival the cost of your state school. And sometime in March the schools do talk to eachother, so Columbia will see that you were accepted to UTSW. Would a private school be persuaded by the argument that you could go to your state school for a lot cheaper? I'm not sure.

A second note on Columbia is that they probably have lots of scholarships available that you could apply for, both need-based and merit-based. You could talk to the financial aid person about any existing opportunities.

A friend of mine in undergrad appealed his financial aid package, and got better results. That's what I would do. I would wait until you get the actual package before you start arguing for more money. And if you nor your family have money, the financial aid forms probably help delineate that, so hopefully you will receive some grant money.

Either way, there may be no way for Columbia to rival the cost of your state school. All is not lost. There are lots of people who paid for their medical education and living expenses with loans. It may feel like a lot now but in 8 years or more you'll be making $100K/ year, and can make a monthly payment with ease. If Columbia is really where you want to go, you'll be able to secure enough loans to get by. Just get the FAFSA and other paperwork into financial aid as soon as possible.
 

uptoolate

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If you make your request, make sure you put it in writing even if you do call the school. Its very easy for phone conversations to be forgotten and hard to prove the conversation ever took place.
 

cytoborg

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My private school ended up being much cheaper than my state school because of the rockin fin aid package, so I think you're on the right track looking at all the options. I would wait until the financial aid package comes in, and if it's not what you were hoping for, then email the financial aid director and briefly explain the other options you're looking at and ask if there's any possibility of them matching the other offers.
 
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dcham

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Thanks for the advice guys! I think you are all right about waiting until I get my financial aid package before calling and/or writing. Does anyone know when financial packages come? For some reason I thought it was late April or May. That doesn't give much time for them to change their offer before I have to narrow my choices down to one school. Also do you think I should talk to someone in admissions or in Finacial aid?