Does applying for scholarships and financial aid influence your admissions decision?

It is finally time to select a college and apply for the admissions. While searching online for a good institute or college you might have come across various factors that will affect your admission process and decision. There are many scholarships for all types of courses available along with the financial aid.

Your grades, score, other certifications, extra-curricular activities, interests, volunteer work can all affect your admission decision to a reputed college or university but does your ability to pay for the admission to that college affect the admission decision? The ability to pay is only a factor when applying to a private university or a college that is run on a profit basis. These colleges or universities are not what is referred to as “need-blind” as they have shareholders who invest in their schools and expect them to earn profit.

Many families and students are worried that if they tick the box where they indicate for financial aid, this would have an impact on their admissions to their schools or colleges of interest. Actually the act of applying for a financial aid should have no effect on whether a student gains an admission or not.  In case, if financial aid and scholarships are a factor for admission in any college’s decision-making process then the admissions office and the financial aid office will communicate and discuss with each other about the actual level of financial need and then it will be considered.  So you should check that box and send in your forms to the colleges.

Manyuniversities or colleges define need-blind as meaning that financial need has no role to play in the decision to deny any students’admission to low-income status. Such a financial need or scholarship is not treated as a negative feature for the low-income students. Thepreferential school fee packaging is based on academic score or a particular talent or skill of interest to the institute, but about two-fifths of it is based on income level of the student. This act of leveraging of the financial aid package supportsthe colleges financially since they get more net tuition revenue from a wealthier student families than a low-income level family even after taking into account for the extra grant aid to the wealthier income level student.

Some colleges or universities have preferences for admissions to wealthier and high income level students, but a few public and non-profit colleges and institutes have admission preferences for low-income students. In reality, the selectivity of the more elite and private colleges actually puts talented and low income level students at a disadvantage in the admissions process, thus affecting the admissions by applying for financial aids and scholarships for universities and colleges.

Hence the bottom line is that there might be slight advantage for admissions for the high income level students who do not have financial need, especially for wait listed students. Hence you need to ask the colleges you are applying whether they follow a need blind admission policy and take your further decisions accordingly.


Leave a Comment