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View Full Version : Why bother sending unfunded admission



fnosdy
03-06-2013, 12:17 AM
It seems rather odd to me, given the extravagant cost of graduate study, that grad schools offer you admission without first year financial support. Isn't it just a more polite way to say GTFO? Who would ever take that? I am genuinely confused.

EDIT: A lot of guys miss my point. If one gets an unfunded offer from a program, he will most likely get another from programs at about the same level, provided he is willing to file a decent number of applications that are well distributed. That means unfunded offer is rarely taken up. The external funding thing may be a good one, but only applies if you have a shot at top-5, or probably you don't get external scholarship either.

to2012
03-06-2013, 12:20 AM
It allows those who would be willing perhaps to go to unfunded to go to an institution that may be better than they would otherwise attend. I see no problem with this.

fnosdy
03-06-2013, 12:28 AM
It allows those who would be willing perhaps to go to unfunded to go to an institution that may be better than they would otherwise attend. I see no problem with this.

but again, if you choose your programs wisely and with a decent large pool, you probably receive funded offers at about same level from other programs.

Rgassen
03-06-2013, 12:31 AM
Is there in the application some sort of statement of financial support in which you can explicitly write that you do not have any other source of fund? Or is there an entry that you can select that you would consider (or not) admission without financial support?

I am going to apply next year, so any answers you guys can give me will be very helfpul :)

app77
03-06-2013, 12:34 AM
Funded offers are not the only source of funding. For instance, although I prefer university funding, I could take an "unfunded" offer because I have external funding.

app77
03-06-2013, 12:36 AM
Is there in the application some sort of statement of financial support in which you can explicitly write that you do not have any other source of fund? Or is there an entry that you can select that you would consider (or not) admission without financial support?

I am going to apply next year, so any answers you guys can give me will be very helfpul :)

Most of the universities I applied to asked for this.

Rgassen
03-06-2013, 12:39 AM
How is international student vs domestic studend funded? I am thinking international students are much more expensive to fund, no? At least this is the case in my university as there is non-residential tuition in addition to regular tuition (which is waived for domestic students non-resident but not for international students non-resident. Domestic=citizen or permanet resident)

chuisle
03-06-2013, 12:41 AM
Some universities offer unfunded offers with the caveat that if you are successful the first year that you may be eligible for funding after that (no guarantees, of course, but given satisfactory progress, etc.). I've spoken to people who have taken such offers and did later end up funded. I know this occurs at BU, for instance. I imagine their thinking goes that one year of debt is worth the degree.

Chevrox
03-06-2013, 12:50 AM
1. some graduate student have outside funding, e.g. home country government, scholarship/fellowship, rich parents, trust fund, etc.
2. if I were accepted into top 5 without funding or prospect of funding, I would still borrow to attend.

WilliamD
03-06-2013, 12:51 AM
It seems rather odd to me, given the extravagant cost of graduate study, that grad schools offer you admission without first year financial support. Isn't it just a more polite way to say GTFO? Who would ever take that? I am genuinely confused.

If I had not gotten any funded offers I would certainly have taken that.

Insti
03-06-2013, 01:06 AM
I personally will decline all unfunded offers because I simply cannot afford it. Had I any way of securing my self some kind of resources - external funding, personal savings, loans I would have gladly accepted one if I did not have any better options. Maybe a lot of people do not think like me but money is not important to me at all as long as I have enough to sustain a decent living, so maybe they are offering those unfunded admits to people like me and people with external funding.


As far as the second question goes I think it is the case for most schools to have higher tuition of non-residents. In particular UCSD was kind of vague about financial support saying that it varies depending on your nationality, so I emailed them and they said that typically their offers for international students are larger because tuition for them is larger.

Rgassen
03-06-2013, 01:23 AM
Do you guys, international students, apply for external funds from your government or non-profit organizations, etc.? I think the chance of being accepted in a place we want might increase quite a bit if we come up funded... If it is the case that international students cost a lot more than domestic students, then acceptance/rejection might be related to the number of internationals students the university can fund. I think I am going to start looking into this for next year. I have been living in the US for a couple of years, but I am not a permanent resident.

Insti
03-06-2013, 01:30 AM
Do you guys, international students, apply for external funds from your government or non-profit organizations, etc.? I think the chance of being accepted in a place we want might increase quite a bit if we come up funded... If it is the case that international students cost a lot more than domestic students, then acceptance/rejection might be related to the number of internationals students the university can fund. I think I am going to start looking into this for next year. I have been living in the US for a couple of years, but I am not a permanent resident.

I guess it would depend on the school. This should hold to a greater extend for schools who ask you for your financial papers at the time of application as opposed to after admittance.

chrishacker
03-06-2013, 02:34 AM
First, if you are accepted without fund by a top 15, but only have offer of a top 70 school, then paying for it for the first year will be a good option. Among international students I know, except for the most brilliant ones, people often get a funded admission in a relatively low ranked school, and unfunded by a higher ranked one. Different people make different decisions on this.

Nevertheless, I never hear of a top 5 who gives unfunded admission...(Correct me if I am wrong), and be sure to know about the financial status of the school before you accept a unfunded admission, especially for public schools. I hear cases that some schools say that they won't fund you in the second year (So people would say to themselves: Don't tell me that no money is available for the five years...) and others make the qualifying exams extremely difficult to limit the number of second-year students.

Langdon
03-06-2013, 03:39 AM
Is there in the application some sort of statement of financial support in which you can explicitly write that you do not have any other source of fund? Or is there an entry that you can select that you would consider (or not) admission without financial support?

I am going to apply next year, so any answers you guys can give me will be very helfpul :)

I applied to Chicago Harris, and there was a section of the application that asked what kind of financial resources I could draw upon if I did not receive funding. If anything, I probably overestimated. I don't recall any similar questions on my applications for econ programs.

I guess the main question has been thoroughly litigated by now, but it seems to me that we're pretty fortunate with regard to financial aid. I know people who went $200K+ in debt to get a medical degree. That's a lot of debt even for most doctors. I wouldn't have hesitated to drop $20K or even $50K to get through an unfunded semester or two. It's easily worth it to me in the long run.

oleador
03-06-2013, 08:32 AM
but again, if you choose your programs wisely and with a decent large pool, you probably receive funded offers at about same level from other programs.

There are a lot of people who do not choose "wisely." I don't see why they should be punished by not having a chance to study, albeit unfunded.

OneArmedEcon
03-06-2013, 09:36 AM
Nevertheless, I never hear of a top 5 who gives unfunded admission...(Correct me if I am wrong), and be sure to know about the financial status of the school before you accept a unfunded admission, especially for public schools. I hear cases that some schools say that they won't fund you in the second year (So people would say to themselves: Don't tell me that no money is available for the five years...) and others make the qualifying exams extremely difficult to limit the number of second-year students.

Chicago is known as a program that (at least historically) does not fund a large percentage of its first year students; however, I'm not sure if that's still the case.

Cornell is the only program that I've heard of that will flat out tell some incoming students that not only will they not have first year funding, but that there is zero chance that they will gain funding at any point regardless of performance. It's a peculiar model that we've discussed at length here before. As far as I know, no other program has adopted it.

chrishacker
03-06-2013, 10:57 AM
Chicago is known as a program that (at least historically) does not fund a large percentage of its first year students; however, I'm not sure if that's still the case.

Cornell is the only program that I've heard of that will flat out tell some incoming students that not only will they not have first year funding, but that there is zero chance that they will gain funding at any point regardless of performance. It's a peculiar model that we've discussed at length here before. As far as I know, no other program has adopted it.

You say 'there is a zero chance that they will gain funding at any point regardless of performance', but what I talk about is just a non-trivial probability that one has no fellowship/TA/RA in the second year even if he does well in the prelims. It's common in UK, but for internationals, you can work part-time in UK, but there is a limitation in US, right? I personally doubt that no funding is another saying of dismissing for internationals, though I have no evidence. But it is a fact that few students can afford it.

I see the following story in a forum. A student who study in an European institute is expelled from a program of engineering. His boss goes out of fund, so he writes a letter to the dean that the student is not motivated on research. Actually the student has help him with three essays...So you know Econ PhD students are lucky.

gradfuture
03-06-2013, 02:09 PM
Cornell is the only program that I've heard of that will flat out tell some incoming students that not only will they not have first year funding, but that there is zero chance that they will gain funding at any point regardless of performance. It's a peculiar model that we've discussed at length here before. As far as I know, no other program has adopted it.

holy crap. are there many students that take those offers? I wonder what their yield is specifically for those. I wonder if that's just a disclaimer and if you make it to 2nd year they will quietly fund you.

noodle
03-06-2013, 02:35 PM
I have a funded offer from UCLA; they said that if I don't plan to go there I should let them know as quickly as possible so they can give the funding to someone else. I guess it's possible that an unfunded offer can turn into a funded offer before you even get there.

(And yes -- if I decide that I'm definitely not going there, I'll turn them down as soon as I decide.)

kipfilet
03-06-2013, 03:00 PM
Chicago is known as a program that (at least historically) does not fund a large percentage of its first year students; however, I'm not sure if that's still the case.

Cornell is the only program that I've heard of that will flat out tell some incoming students that not only will they not have first year funding, but that there is zero chance that they will gain funding at any point regardless of performance. It's a peculiar model that we've discussed at length here before. As far as I know, no other program has adopted it.

That is still the case: Chicago makes relatively few fully funded offers in 1st years (less than half). MIT also makes unfunded offers for example.

applicant12
03-06-2013, 03:07 PM
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