Essay on Scholarships for the deserving (logical argument)

Submitted By schaa1aj
Words: 1114
Pages: 5

Scholarships For The Deserving
Eng 201

Main Body In today’s economy and current job market, receiving a college degree is now more important than ever. While a college degree is more important to getting a job it is also becoming increasingly difficult for many incoming students to pay for their tuition. There are currently two forms of scholarships: merit based, and need based. Everyone that attends college should be there because they deserve to be. Therefore, merit based scholarships should be the most widely used form of financial aid because they reward the most deserving candidates rather than giving scholarships only based on income levels. Having merit based scholarships benefits both colleges and students alike. Colleges can use merit based scholarships to entice high achieving students to attend their campuses rather than competing schools. Having higher achieving students helps to make the schools more prestigious and attract other students. According to the Associated Press in the article Hamilton College To End Merit Scholarships In Favor Of Need-Based Aid “many schools spend millions of dollars on merit aid to lure more accomplished students.” (Associated Press, 2007). To add to this, in Peter Schmidt’s article At The Elite Colleges-Dim White Kids he states that merit based scholarships are used to attract students that will enhance the school’s reputation or are likely to donate money to the school further down the road (Schmidt, 2007). They are using the students on the merit based scholarships to bring in more tuition money from other students. So it makes sense for them to pay for a student’s education because in the end they still end up coming out ahead. Many students receive merit aid from state legislators for scoring high on tests such as the ACT and SAT and according to Brent Staples in his essay A Broader Definition of Merit: The Trouble With College Entry Exams admissions directors are very eager to accept the applicant so that they can receive the aid money (Staples, 2008). Once a school has earned a good reputation many students will pick it as their first choice and merit based aid makes it possible for many to attend. Zoe Mendelson said in her article Paying for College that “suggesting that all brilliant middle-class kids should just go to the schools that they can afford undermines the meritocracy that we claim as a nation.” (Mendelson, 2008). Another reason that merit based scholarships should be given out more than need based scholarships is because they include people from all economic classes. The income cutoffs for need based scholarships are very low and exclude many people that couldn’t afford a college education without financial aid. The people that are affected by the need based cutoffs the most are those in the middle class. The middle class is often overlooked and according to Schmidt “the middle class has been steadily getting squeezed out of…institutions by those with more money.” (Schmidt, 2007). According to the 2006 US Census data used in Mendelson’s article the average household income was $48,200 and according to the College Board the average tuition at a top tier university is close to $40,000 (Mendelson, 2008). With average savings of disposable income around .0% for Americans it shows that the large amount of money needed for college tuition is out of reach for many members of the middle class (Mendelson, 2008). Some argue that college bills that exceed the average annual income and the low level covered by need based aid seem to be designed to exclude the middle class. Merit based scholarships are a good way to address this problem because anyone can attain them by setting themselves apart from others and excelling academically regardless of their income. With the merit based aid students are on a level playing field entering into the college life and many recipients of them would be unable to attend if scholarships