Most Students Receiving Merit Aid

Many colleges advertise generous merit scholarships without explaining that there are actually several different kinds of merit aid. Some colleges, for example, give fancy merit-sounding names to scholarships that they award to qualified students who have also shown that they can't afford the college's full price.

The federal government only awards Pell Grants based on the student's "need" for money to pay for college. Some elite colleges also only award aid to students who they believe can't afford tuition, since they say all of their students are meritorious.

This chart lists the colleges that report the highest percentage of their students in the 2012-2013 academic year who "had no financial need and who were awarded institutional non-need-based scholarship or grant aid" excluding athletic awards and tuition benefits.

School Percent of students receiving non-need based aid
Neumann University

Aston, PA

23%
Roanoke College

Salem, VA

23%
Hollins University

Roanoke, VA

23%
Bryn Athyn College of the New Church

Bryn Athyn, PA

22%
University of Montevallo

Montevallo, AL

22%
Case Western Reserve University

Cleveland, OH

22%
Butler University

Indianapolis, IN

22%
Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts 1

Old Lyme, CT

22%
Colorado School of Mines

Golden, CO

22%
University of Texas—​Dallas

Richardson, TX

22%
Houston Baptist University

Houston, TX

22%
St. Olaf College

Northfield, MN

22%
West Virginia University

Morgantown, WV

22%
Knox College

Galesburg, IL

22%
Oklahoma Christian University

Oklahoma City, OK

22%
Troy University

Troy, AL

22%
St. Leo University

Saint Leo, FL

22%
Seattle Pacific University

Seattle, WA

22%
Agnes Scott College

Decatur, GA

22%
Augustana College

Rock Island, IL

22%
Michigan Technological University

Houghton, MI

21%
College of Idaho

Caldwell, ID

21%
St. Bonaventure University

St. Bonaventure, NY

21%
Linfield College

McMinnville, OR

21%
Elizabethtown College

Elizabethtown, PA

21%
William Jewell College

Liberty, MO

21%
Lynchburg College

Lynchburg, VA

21%
Washington and Jefferson College

Washington, PA

21%
West Virginia Wesleyan College

Buckhannon, WV

21%
University of Findlay

Findlay, OH

21%
Louisiana College 1

Pineville, LA

21%
University of Alabama

Tuscaloosa, AL

21%
Wheeling Jesuit University

Wheeling, WV

21%
Oklahoma Baptist University

Shawnee, OK

21%
University of Colorado—​Boulder

Boulder, CO

21%
Oral Roberts University

Tulsa, OK

21%
Huntingdon College

Montgomery, AL

21%
Chapman University

Orange, CA

21%
Rider University

Lawrenceville, NJ

21%
Carthage College

Kenosha, WI

21%
Fairfield University

Fairfield, CT

21%
Union College

Schenectady, NY

21%
Merrimack College

North Andover, MA

21%
North Central College

Naperville, IL

21%
Pacific Union College

Angwin, CA

21%
York College of Pennsylvania

York, PA

21%
Loyola Marymount University

Los Angeles, CA

21%
Bellarmine University

Louisville, KY

21%
Clearwater Christian College

Clearwater, FL

21%
Elon University

Elon, NC

20%

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