Paying for College

Will Older Child's Merit Scholarship Hurt #2's Aid Award?

Question: We have two college-bound children and we will not qualify for need-based aid. The first one has very high scores and has a good chance at merit-aid. The second - not as much. We are debating if to focus the college search of the first around merit aid. My question: If our first gets a significant merit scholarship, would our EFC still drop to a half once the second go to college, or would we still pay our full EFC? (Full EFC for the second if the first has a full ride scholarship - just as an example). Thanks!

That's a really good question ... but, unfortunately, you won't get a really good answer from "The Dean" ... just a far flakier "It depends." I'm also a little confused. You said that you won't qualify for need-based aid. Well, if your EFC is above the cost of attendance for Child #1, this is true. So are you wondering if your EFC may be low enough, once #2 comes along, to allow you to apply for need-based aid? That's what I'm guessing. This is true for many families who can eke out a full-freight payment for a first child but are stretched beyond sanity if they have to cover college costs for two concurrently.

Keep reading Show less
Find Your Best Fit
Find your best fit college and track your favorite colleges.
FORUMS
Connect with your future classmates
GUIDANCE
Offer not stacking up? These articles may help
GUIDANCE
Expert advice and answers to common SAT and ACT questions