My DS was just accepted to VMI, his first choice school by far. Unfortunately we live in California, and so are facing the hefty out-of-state tuition. He has applied for an NROTC scholarship (Marine option) but knowing how competitive that process is we are not relying on receiving one. His financial aid offer from VMI would only put a very small dent in the total cost each year. He did not apply for the academic scholarship offered at VMI because his SAT score was just under the requirement, as was his GPA. His Dad and I are torn because he was admitted to and received a scholarship from another school where he could still be on the swim team, but not do ROTC -- at roughly half the cost of VMI. Practically of course, that makes the most sense, until I remember the look on his face the first time we visited VMI and how he fell in love with it immediately, which has not changed over subsequent visits. The more difficult they make it sound, the more he wants to go. He's planning on a career in the Marine Corps regardless of where he ends up attending college. So my question is this: are there any parents of current VMI students or grads, or any alumni on this board who could share an opinion on whether the cost is worth it? We could send him there but would have to leverage ourselves financially beyond what I am totally comfortable with. I would be grateful for any personal experience anyone can share.