What To Do Next
Especially ahead of the fall 2021 semester, keep in mind that schools may be swamped with appeal requests. Allow at least a week before following up. Remember to check your spam filter and your voicemail to make sure you don’t miss a response.If you don’t hear back, email the person you addressed your letter to. Include a copy of your original letter so they don’t have to go hunting for your original request. Keep your followup short, sweet, and extremely polite. A short note will suffice. For example:
Dear Ms. Hopkins,
I am emailing you to follow up on the financial aid appeal I sent to you on July 8, 2020. For your convenience, I have attached my original letter and all documentation to this email. Thank you for consideration and I look forward to hearing from you.
Letter Should Have A Professional Tone
The letter should have a professional tone, so the student demonstrates that he or she is organized, flexible and financially savvy.
The student may send many tuition assistance letters, so they need to make a list of all the possible donors and modify each letter for each person or institution.
The letter needs to give all the information the financial officer or individual needs to justify giving aid.
Negotiate Before Sending A Deposit
Dont send in your deposit before you negotiate college tuition with the financial aid and admissions offices. The timing matters. If youve already sent in your deposit, theres a good chance the school wont worry too much about cutting a deal.
However, if you work on this before the national May 1 deadline for deposits, you have a better chance. Get your numbers squared away and send an email requesting a review. Then, ask if you can follow up with a phone call or in-person appointment in the coming weeks.
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Understand How Financial Aid Works
Before you ask for more money, its important to understand how college aid works. Colleges and universities give two kinds of financial aid. First is need-based aid, which is based on the results of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid and the College Scholarship Service profile . Most U.S. schools use the FAFSA to help determine what a family can afford to pay for college. Some other schools, typically at the more expensive end of the educational market, also use the CSS profile for the same purpose.
After determining need-based aid, most colleges also hand out whats called merit aid. Maybe the applicant shows particular academic promise, or is uniquely gifted in music or sports. Or perhaps the student is simply eligible for common college tuition discounts. Regardless, think of merit aid as an extra incentive that colleges can give to students theyd particularly like to enroll.
No matter which kind of aid youd like to increase, appeal money is first come, first serve, says David Haas, a financial planner in Franklin Lakes, New Jersey. For that reason, if youre going to appeal aid for the school year that begins in autumn 2021, do it now.
Sell Your Old College Papers
Beyond selling notes, most college students write paperslots and lots of papers. Don’t let these assignments go to waste. There are services that will buy your old college papers. For example, you could look at GradeSaver. This services allow you to sell your old essays and get anywhere from $15 to $100 for them. If you’re writing multiple papers per semester, this could be a great little side income.
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How To Ask For Money For Graduation
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May 19, 2020
Getting money as a gift is awesome. It gives you the freedom to buy what you really want. You can pay down debt, put some into savings, or take yourself on a nice little post-graduation trip. However, asking for money can be super awkward.
If youre getting ready to graduate and you could really benefit from some cold, hard cash, heres some guidance on how to ask for money without coming across as tacky or greedy.
Dont Ask For College Fund Money On Event Invites
Heres the deal. Even if your birthday party invitees want to give your child a gift or college money, they generally do not want you to expect that of them. Dont may be too strong of a word in this case, but just be very careful when asking for specific gifts, including college fund money, on the birthday invite.Birthday parties are occasions where friends and family come together to celebrate and enhance their social relationships with each other. That is the same reason they generally bring gifts to these occasions. Assuming that your guests are going to bring gifts, or instructing them to bring a certain gift, changes the message. You are no longer inviting them just because they are important there is some transaction that you are expecting to take place as well.
Specifying gift instructions on an invite can make your guests feel less important
Thats not going to give your guests the warm-and-fuzzies. This tactic will be especially risky if your guest list includes many people outside of your close friends and family network.If you would like to include a message on the invite, you may want to opt for something that illustrates the following:
- You are important and your presence alone is enough
- We are not asking anybody for gifts and do not expect you to bring anything
- For those that HAVE to give something, consider supporting our child in their future educational pursuits.
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Explore Other Sources Of Money
Once your appeal is in, follow up to make sure the financial aid office has everything it needs from you to avoid delays in the process. Then be prepared to wait. The turn-around varies by school, anywhere from two to eight weeks, experts say. Some schools are still fielding emergency requests for spring term and havent had time to process appeal letters for the fall, Lewis says.
Whether youve already filed an appeal or anticipate filing in the future, search now for additional sources of money. Upper division students can check with their departments for scholarships in their area of study. Check with local organizations and alumni groups as well.
Since special circumstance appeals apply to need-based aid, incoming freshman can also ask the admissions office about the possibility of additional merit aid if the school offers it, especially if you can demonstrate improved test scores or grades.
Come fall, check with your school again to learn about money from donations and coronavirus fundraising campaigns.
Who knows what will be available next school year, but students should check, Lewis says.
Use Diversity And Differentiation To Your Advantage
A lot of MBA programs have been inclined towards promoting diversity by increasing the number of incoming women students as they form the under-represented group. They have an advantage in terms of scholarships too as there are scholarships reserved for women candidates. Read what business schools are doing to attract women applicants.
Other scholarships reserved for the under-represented groups are based on ethnicity, residency or natives of a particular country. There are few scholarships for those pursuing their studies or career in certain specific fields.
If youve had no luck increasing the scholarship amount through your school, you may look out for scholarships available through independent external sources. Have a thorough research done to explore all avenues so that any opportunity is not missed out and the applications are made on time.
For your reference, weve put together this list of MBA scholarships.
Candidates may also look out for assistantship opportunities on campus which can ease the financial load to some extent.
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How To Write A Successful Financial Aid Appeal Letter
Was your financial aid award less than you expected? Has your ability to pay for school changed? Do you think the college may have overlooked something when decided your award amount?
No need to panic. You always have options. And in some cases, one of those options might be to craft a well-written financial aid appeal letter. Here, we’re going to tell you how to write one. Bonus: We’ll even show you a sample that you can customize.
How To Pitch Your Boss
If you want your company to help pay for your education, prepare to pitch the idea to your boss or the human resources manager. Don’t go for it until you are ready with some specifics:
- Know the degree or certification you want to earn
- Pick the school and the courses you want to enroll in
- Create a list of the ways the company will benefit from your education
Remember, you will be adding valuable additional skills to the company’s workforce. You will be able to make a greater contribution to its success and even bring in more revenue. You will be able to share your knowledge with your colleagues and mentor new employees.
Don’t go in blindlyâmake sure you prepare a pitch for your employer about the benefits of paying for your education.
Try to anticipate questions or concerns that your HR manager may have, and answer in a way that speaks directly to the benefit your education will bring the company. If the boss is worried about the expense, note that it may cost less than hiring another employee who already has the degree you’re seeking.
Be prepared for this meeting. Practice making your key points, and take your notes into the meeting with you. If the answer is no, don’t give up. Try again next quarter.
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Try Crowdfunding To Help Pay Your Tuition
When considering how to pay for college, crowdfunding might not immediately come to mind. But to reach more distant relatives or Facebook friends, consider taking your quest to cover tuition online.
Websites like GoFundMe could also connect you with strangers looking to support a worthy cause. Of course, it helps to have one.
Just saying Help pay my tuition! isnt enough. Youll need to convince the visitors to your page that your education is a worthy investment. You might do this by explaining your circumstances, plus how a college degree would help you change them.
Getting strangers to land on your online listing is another challenge. You might promote it on your social media profiles or start an email campaign among your contacts.
Consider The Timing Of Your Request
The pandemic is creating exceptionally fluid situations for many families, experts say. If your parents job is in limbo and you cant provide solid information right now on the school form, you might need to wait until your situation becomes clearer, Lewis says. Normally, she doesnt recommend waiting, but in the case of the coronavirus, it might be necessary to hold off until, say, early summer, when states are more fully open and job prospects more evident. It’s a balancing act of gaining solid information about your finances while not missing out on available money.
Colleges are hesitant to make big changes to a students EFC with only a month or two of job information, Lewis says. But if your family has already experienced a few months of job loss, thats enough time for financial aid offices to project a new family contribution with your income decrease. If your situation is still fluid, you havent lost out. Schools accept special circumstances appeals throughout the year, so you can submit one after your situation solidifies.
However, if your situation is clear nowfor instance, a parent has been laid off permanentlysubmit your appeal as soon as possible since some types of aid are limited. If an incoming freshman isnt comfortable committing to a college without an updated financial aid award, you should also submit your appeal now with a best estimate of your long-term financial impact, Lewis says.
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Random Acts Of Kindness
While you cant ask for money in any form , Random Acts of Kindness is an awesome subreddit that offers a community that is ready to give and help.
Some acts of kindness include giving away access and log-in codes for video games or a girlfriend asking local Redditors to come out and wish her long-distance boyfriend a happy birthday because hes alone in a foreign country.
You need a minimum of 300 comment karma, in order to post a request.
These are more subreddits worthy of a visit, but again, you cant ask people for money.
- : You connect with a community and share what kinds of things you have on our Amazon wishlist. People buy Amazon gifts for each other on the site.
- Random Acts of Gaming: The community uses games to donate to others.
- Random Acts of Pizza: State your case for why you need a pie delivered to your door and you just might get it!
How To Ask For More Financial Aid For College
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Share Your Phone Info
Along the same lines as trivia, you can get paid for just using your mobile phone and allowing companies to know what you’re doing on it. For example, Neilson Mobile is an app that you can earn rewards on just for having it installed. It will take snapshots of what you’re doing and use those for advertisers to know more about your demographic. It takes away some privacy, but you get paid for it.
Choose An Affordable School
Paying for college will be exponentially easier if you choose a school thats reasonably priced for you. To avoid straining your bank account, consider starting at a community college or technical school.
If you opt for a traditional four-year university, look for one that is generous with aid. Focus on the net price of each school or the cost to you after grants and scholarships. Use each schools net price calculator to estimate the amount youll have to pay out of pocket or borrow.
Just because one schools sticker price is lower doesnt mean it will be more affordable for you, says Phil Trout, a college counselor at Minnetonka High School in Minnetonka, Minnesota, and former president of the National Association for College Admission Counseling. For example, if a $28,000-a-year school doesnt offer you any aid, and a $60,000-a-year college offers you $40,000 in aid, the school with the higher sticker price is actually more affordable for you.
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Seek Aid From Your Degree Program
Beyond the general college financial aid office, Ross encourages students to speak to the program of their degree. For example, if youre majoring in nursing, go visit the School of Nursings administrative office. Oftentimes if youre studying towards a certain major, that department will have departmental specific scholarship money, grant funds and other opportunities for students.
The most important thing is that you ask. You cant be shy when it comes to financial aid, as it is the busy body students who get the aid money. So dont be nervous, just ask away.
Have Your Parents Do Your Dirty Work
Another approach you can take is to have your parents share the word. If your relatives call to inquire about what you want for graduation, mom and dad can steer them in the right direction. Have them relay the message that you have a ton of expenses and a financial contribution would be a big help.
Your parents can also send out a graduation announcement whether its your high school or college graduation. This lets people know that you have graduated and that may trigger some people to send gifts.
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Do Ask Close Friends And Family
Your parents probably do not want to get hit up for cash by one of your friends. Its tacky. But you are their child, and you are raising their grandchild. If you directly ask them for money for your childs college fund, they will probably tack that on to all of the gifts they were going to get anyway. They may even be impressed with your maturity. And, lets be honest, you probably just asked them for money for some ridiculous need a week or two ago, soIt is also generally okay to ask for college fund money from your closest friends and relatives. They want to contribute to your childs college fund, and they are close enough to you that you will probably get a free pass on being direct. Know your audience though some folks will think its tacky no matter what.
Close friends and family are usually okay with being directly asked to give college fund money
It is almost never wrong to reply money for the college fund when anybody asks you what they should get your child on your childs birthday or other special occasion. You are making the gift givers life easier and minimizing the anxiety of not finding anything to give or deciding on the wrong thing.