Why would any high school student, from a non-rich family, ever choose Williams over Stanford given this?

If a student’s parents make less than $125,000 per year, and if they have assets of less than $300,000, excluding retirement accounts, the parents won’t be expected to pay anything toward their children’s Stanford tuition. Families with incomes lower than $65,000 won’t have to contribute to room and board, either.

1) Recall EphBlog’s prediction from a decade ago: Elite education will eventually be free for all US families outside the 1%. Stanford isn’t quite there yet, but each year we take another step in that direction. You can be sure that Harvard/Yale/Princeton will soon meet (and surpass) Stanford, if they haven’t done so already.

2) Do any non-rich students choose Williams over H/Y/P/S? The standard data point that we here is that 10% of the students admitted to both Williams and H/Y/P/S choose Williams. Still true? (We need to get better data on this topic.) Even to the extent that it is, I suspect that the vast majority of these students are rich or, at least, not getting financial aid. I would never advise a student to go into meaningful debt in order to go to Williams instead of H/Y/P/S. Would you?

3) My sense is that Willams, while not as generous as H/Y/P/S, is as generous as other schools, both the lesser Ivies and our LAC peers. Anyone have first hand experience?

4) Williams should be moving millions of dollars from other parts of its budget and into financial aid, at least until it can match the offers that (some) students receive from H/Y/P/S, especially offers to highly desirable students, like African-Americans.

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