Your Higher Education Marketing Link of the Week… Boston University Merit Scholarships Diffficult to Get… 24 March 2023

At Boston University, are you most likely not to get a merit scholarship?

Boston UniversityBoston UniversityAt the start of their “scholarship” web pages few colleges and universities announce the difficulty of winning an available award. In these time of high price sensitivity most schools give the impression that scholarships are widely available even if they often omit specific eligibility criteria.

Boston University, on the other hand, is a “highly selective” or “highly rejective” (favorite terms will differ) school with a 19 percent admissions rate.

The brand message in the marketplace: This is a place in high demand. Only the most worthy are admitted. And only a few of those will receive a “merit” scholarship.

With a quick scan as the scholarships page opens you’ll see a prominent subhead just below the opening paragraph: “The competition is keen.”

How keen? BU notes that criteria for various scholarships differ but winners “typically”:

  • Rank in the top 5% of their high school class
  • Have shown incredible extracurricular achievements in their schools and communities
  • Have SAT scores above 1500 and ACT scores above 33 (Although test scores are not required through fall 2025/spring 2026 admission).

Use of the “incredible” word here no doubt adds extra striving on the two essays BU requires on the Common Application as those extracurricular “achievements” are described.

Follow the Link of the Week…

See how one university uses scholarship criteria and possibilities to reinforce a desired brand image when you visit “Merit Scholarships for First-Year Students.”

Speed on mobile… 3.7 seconds to first view, 8.4 seconds to full interactivity

Google PageSpeed Insights measures the time to first view of the “Merit Scholarships” page on a mobile phone at an OK 3.7 seconds. Time to full interactivity at 8.4 seconds was a bit slow.

The first step to improving mobile speed is seldom seen: “Serve images in next-gen formats.” And that’s closely followed by
“Efficiently encode images.”

Might just be that opening hero image that’s slowing things down.

Website Carbon Calculator… dirtier than most

Thanks to Gerry McGovern and his efforts to reduce “world wide waste” for the referral.

The Boston University merit scholarships page is “dirtier than 92% of web pages tested.”

Does your website help or hurt the climate? Test your website pages at “Website Carbon Calculator.”

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Always eager to get recommendations of websites that dare to be different… or just do something ordinary in a special way. Write a comment with link here or send me the link at

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