September 8, 2010

Ivy League Tuition : Yes You CAN Afford it

If you can get into one of the best top tier colleges in the nation then you should go.   People seem afraid of a tuition bill at a major Ivy League level school, but this fear is unfounded.    The most prestigious universities in the nation also have some of the most generous financial aid.   If you can get into an Ivy League school then its virtually guaranteed that you can afford it.

Harvard is Cheap ..With Financial Aid
Harvard costs well over $50,000 total in tuition and other expenses.   Thats expensive.  But you probably won't pay anywhere near that.  

Financial aid at Harvard is very generous.  They make this commitment:
"Harvard guarantees to meet 100 percent of a student’s demonstrated financial need for all four college years based on information we receive from the family each year."

Tuition is free at Harvard for families making under $60,000.  The general expectation for families making from $60,000 to $180,000 income is that you'll pay 10% of your income towards college.   Average loan debt for 2009 Harvard grads was under $9,000 which is well under the national average loan debt for graduating seniors of over $20,000.  

Ivy League will all meet your financial need.

Harvard isn't the only school in the Ivy League with very generous financial aid.   In fact every single Ivy League school says that they will meet a families full financial needs.   When they say "financial need" that means how much the family needs in order to afford the school after the financial aid forms are filed and the families contribution is determined.   SO if the college costs $50,000 a year and the financial aid forms determine the family can pay $5,000 with their own money then the left over difference of $45,000 is the "financial need".    Put that simply : The universities will cover the cost that you can't pay yourself.

All the Ivy's

Brown University : "Brown is committed to meeting a family's full demonstrated need"    If family income is under $60,000 then Brown expects you to pay nothing.   If the family makes under $100,000 then they don't require you to take any loans.

Columbia University: "Columbia meets 100% of the demonstrated financial need for all students admitted as first-years"

Cornell University: Announced this summer : "Cornell will commit to matching the parental contribution and loan level of other Ivy schools, and will strive to also match the parental contribution and loan levels at Stanford, Duke and MIT."   And since the other Ivy's all say they'll meet 100% of your need, Cornell will match it at similar 100% needs.

Dartmouth University :   They say that their financial aid  : " meets enrolling students' full demonstrated financial need." 

Princeton University:  They state that they : "For more than three decades, we've considered students for admission to Princeton without concern over their families' ability to pay — and offered aid to cover 100 percent of each admitted student’s need." and they meet your financial need without loans: "Princeton was the first university to offer every aid recipient a financial aid package that replaces loans with grant aid (scholarships) that students do not pay back." 

University of Pennsylvania:   "Penn is committed to meet 100 percent of your financial need, as determined by Student Financial Services."

Yale University :   Yale says that they : "will meet the full demonstrated need of every student including international students for all four years." 

Other Great Universities

Stanford University : "For parents with total annual income below $60,000 and typical assets for this income range, Stanford will not expect a parent contribution toward educational costs" and they'll make sure tuition is covered if your income is under $100,000.

M.I.T.  : "We meet the full need of each undergraduate for all four years"

CalTech : "If you are an admitted student whose family has insufficient financial resources to pay for all or part of your educational expenses, Caltech will provide you with a financial aid package commensurate with your demonstrated need and so make it possible for you to attend."

Military Academies

Our nations military academies are among the best universities in the country.   If you decide to go the military route then the academies offer an excellent education with no cost.   In fact you actually get a salary while you attend.

West Point says  : "A West Point cadetship includes a fully funded four-year college education. Tuition, room, board, medical and dental care are provided by the U.S. Army. As members of the Armed Forces, cadets also receive an annual salary of more than $6,500."

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