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May 16, 2011


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With regard to the first point, that conditional scholarships are a way to keep the high-grade students who'd otherwise be likely to transfer to higher-ranked schools, I don't think the fear of looking "crass" should prevent schools from being clearer that this is part of their interest. That is, the schools could be much more honest that the scholarship for the second and third years will be earned only by students who perform so well during their first year that they would be eligible to transfer to higher-ranked schools. Statistics on the percentage of first-year scholarship students who obtain second- and third-year scholarships would make the point nicely. While there may be no factual difference, there's a definite perceptual difference between "I have a scholarship for three years so long as I keep my grades up" and "I have a scholarship for *one* year and can earn a scholarship for the other two if I'm among the top third of my class."


Interesting thoughts here. One quick reaction is that a better strategy to keep high performing students from transferring would be to increase the amount of the scholarship for higher grades, rather than cut it for lower ones.

Using the current contingent scholarship as a means of keeping people could backfire as you create extra stress for the law students during their first year, which is bound to leave a bad taste in the mouth of even the top performers (which will in turn hurt your donations from both top and other performers).

This really seems more clearly linked to getting high potential applicants in the door in the first place. It also seems like a strategy you can't pursue for too long if you want to have any future donations.

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