I learned a very valuable lesson recently about being persistent and not settling for the first answer you get. Since my junior year, I have been looking at schools and applying for scholarships.We filled out the FAFSA forms and all of the other miles of paperwork that goes in to the process. We toured campuses all last summer, and before the early-enrollment deadlines, I had narrowed my choices down to . But was an issue. I really needed some generous offers if I was going to attend any of the three. After going through the music audition process, I was relegated to a waiting game. Finally, in March, I was offered the Provost Scholarship at one of my top-3 choice universities. This was an offer for full tuition, renewable for four years. Most people would be thrilled to get that. But before I accepted the offer, my mom suggested that I ask if they could do better. So I wrote to the dean of admissions for the school of music. I laid out the case that I had the grades, test scores and community service requirements to be eligible for the Presidential Scholarship. I also mentioned that because some of the courses in my major would be held off campus, I was going to need a to get there. This presented a challenge, since I planned to live on campus and would have to pay for the car, insurance, and parking in a university deck. My persistence paid off. A little more than a week later, I got the response I hoped for - a Presidential Scholarship paying for full tuition, housing, meal plan, books, and fees.
What a fantastic payoff for just taking the time to present my case and ask for help. So my advice, based on personal experience, is that you should never just accept the first answer. You can always ask for more.