A "is this a good college" thread for all college searchers...

Discussion in 'Community Board' started by golfgal, Feb 24, 2011.

  1. ctinct

    ctinct DIS Veteran

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    I am not certain what acoustic engineering is, but my older daughter went to univ. of Miami, and I remember her telling me their music dept. was very good, and I know there was some sort of sound engineering major. Beautiful campus, great beaches. Expensive, though. Many people think it is a state school, but it is actually private.


    Ok, my turn. Impressions of Gettysburg and Ithaca?
     
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  3. j's m

    j's m DIS Veteran

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    No, Southwest out of Philadelphia, I think flying out Wednesday, flying back Tuesday. I think I did do it for like next week, maybe I should try again a few months out. Although I went to visit it would be the next week. :rotfl2:
     
  4. ctinct

    ctinct DIS Veteran

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    In our case, we started with location. Daughter wants to stay in the northeast, although her #1 pick is a little further than she would have liked. We started out by visiting a small, medium, and large school. She got a feel for size and decided at least 2500 students or so, so not too tiny, but she found out she would prefer not to attend a large school. (Although she may have to attend our state university, depending on financial aid. It's a fairly large school, but hopefully she'll find a niche.)

    Next she looked at schools that have a good reputation in her intended area of study, although as we visited, she learned about another major that she really became interested in, so all her potential schools have at least those two majors. The thing about majors is....they change. Often. So unless your son has a unique program in mind, any number of schools should have the basic depts.

    Once we nailed down size, location, and majors, we looked at reputation, then the extras. Some of dd's wishes were a school with school spirit (I know, not a very important thing in the grand scheme of things, but it is to HER), and lots of clubs and opportunities for volunteering. She also thinks she wants a Greek system, although she really has no experience with that.

    As far as cost, we picked two financial safeties. One was out of state that she wasn't crazy about (we haven't visited though. Everyone on College Confidential says a visit sells the school.) It's big, but we knew she was guaranteed free tuition because of her standardized scores. It's kind of off the table because she was also given free tuition at our state school, although our state school is quite a bit more expensive than the other school as afr as fees, room, and board. (Alabama). Sorry for digressing. My point is, have at least one financial safety school that your son would be at least ok attending. After that, we did not really pay attention to price. They are all so expensive. We did try to pay attention to % of need met; however, be aware that loans are considered aid, so some schools will expect you to take a boatload of loans.


    Also, it is REALLY important to visit. Sometimes there is a vibe about a place you just can't get no matter how many books you read. We visited a number of places that, while my daughter thought they were very nice, she just did not see herself fitting in. She said they would be great schools for someone else; in fact, she recommended one or two of them to a few of her friends. It turned out that her favorite school is one I dragged her to. I thought it would be a fit; she thought it was too far. We are anxiously waiting for an admittance decision and praying for a good aid pkg.

    Good luck with your search.
     
  5. MrsPete

    MrsPete DIS Veteran

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    Yes, they're particularly known for their Halloween bash. They also have the highest percentage of STD among all the UNC system. It's not a bad school, but it does attract its share of students who come for reasons other than academics.
    If things work out as I anticipate, my daughter probably won't have a car her freshman year (possibly sophomore year too). Why? She's going to live on campus, so she'll be able to walk everywhere she needs. They have a bus system that students can ride all over campus and to nearby restaurants and shops, so a car won't be a NEED. And we've talked about going up to visit /bringing her home once a month -- the school I think she'll attend isn't so far away that that'd be problematic. When she's a junior/senior, though, she'll be doing student nursing, which will mean she needs transportation to the hospital -- she could continue to use the bus, but once transportation is a daily need, I don't see that as reasonable.

    Oh, and I neglected to mention one of the big reasons: The school has little land for parking lots, and they sell decent parking spots to the upperclassmen -- but the freshmen parking lot is literally MILES down the road. So freshmen must take the bus to the parking lot. Forget spontaneous trips here and there! And they have to pay $350/year for the priviledge of parking miles away! Anyway, we've already promised her that we'll buy her a new car (and give her old one to her younger sister) for graduation if she earns a scholarship that'll pay most of her education. She's already said that she might prefer to wait 'til after her freshman year to get her car -- she sees no point in allowing it to sit in the parking lot at home growing older.
     
  6. punkin

    punkin <font color=purple>Went through pain just to look

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    My DD18 does not have a car at school due to the parking issues as well.
     
  7. Robinrs

    Robinrs DIS Veteran

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    Awesome reasoning!

    Most of the schools we've visited would require a car because they're so spread out. We'll have to see which one he eventually goes to and make the decision then.
     
  8. MrsPete

    MrsPete DIS Veteran

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    I'll second this! We recently visited UNC-Chapel Hill, which is THE SCHOOL in NC. So many kids are dying to get in there. The better students at our high school seem to have the attitude "if you can get in, GO" . . . and although I am sure my daughter's grades and extra-curriculars would get her in, we've decided that she isn't going to apply. It did nothing for either one of us -- we just can't see her fitting in there.
     
  9. erincon23

    erincon23 <font color=blue>Everyone must have gotten a life

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    Thanks -- that's interesting. This suggestion about getting in-state tuition came from the director of admissions, and would be a key factor in allowing my son to go there. Even out of state, it's not as expensive as some of the private colleges he's looking at, but we certainly can't afford either the out-of-state tuition or the private colleges. In-state, we might be able to manage. We'll have to check that out further.
     
  10. MrsPete

    MrsPete DIS Veteran

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    Yes, schools can be so different! The school that my daughter will probably attend is small in size and is encapsulated by a small town, so it will never grow. All the buildings are quite close together.

    And although I've not been there personally, I've heard that you can just FORGET using a car on football game days. But the (free to students) busses will still run everywhere.

    My daughter LOVES her car, and when we learned how difficult it is for freshmen to have a car on this campus, I thought, "This is where she says, 'Not for me -- let's go home!' " . . . but she didn't. Seeing the ease of bus use, she immediately said that she'd forego the car for a year if she could attend that school. And, of course, she's in a perfect situation: She'll still have her own car when she comes home because her sister won't have a license for another year.

    My daughter's needs, your son's needs -- little in common!
     
  11. dejr_8

    dejr_8 <font color=CC00FF>DIS Veteran<br><font color=33CC

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    Remember, this is the school your daughter will be attending. Make sure you don't "influence" her decision because of your impressions about the school.
     
  12. Jeafl

    Jeafl <font color=red>Has an emergency auto hammer & kno

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    No, she goes to Augustana in Rock Island, IL, which is on the border of IL and IA. The Mississippi River is pretty much on the edge of campus.

    We visited Marquette and liked it. The only reservation my son has about it is that he isn't sure that he wants a big city atmosphere.

    I hope not. At $57,200 a year for tuition they better cough up with a lot of money in order to be competitive with the other schools.
     
  13. collegejunkie

    collegejunkie DIS Veteran

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    So...Drexel or AU anyone?

    agnes![/QUOTE]

    drexel is pretty techy, big on engineering. also merit money available if you applied/apply by the deadline. american is polisci heavy, and the location is really good for relevant internships if that's the area your child is interested in.

    carnegie mellon is by far the best school on this list, but it's also very pricey. it's a really strong school. at my high school, it took the "ivy rejects" - not exactly bad considering that means it's all top-notch students. u of iowa has an awesome english/writing department. i've heard only good things about purdue. i don't know the other 2 - sorry!

    i'm from long island, too. try binghamton. it might be slightly more than 4 hours away. cortland is also in the area. if you're willing to travel a tiny bit more (like an hour), you could try one of the contract colleges at cornell (reduced tuition for NY residents at 3 of the schools/colleges). ithaca college is also in that area. have you considered schools in the city? there are a ton.
     
  14. j's m

    j's m DIS Veteran

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    Merit Aid, reputation, location, size in that order
     
  15. collegejunkie

    collegejunkie DIS Veteran

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    sorry, my post got cut?? i don't know why. but the beginning said that i love to do college advising and i've been doing it privately for friends and family friends, so i'll pop in to help when i can. :)
     
  16. jbcheerchick93

    jbcheerchick93 DIS Veteran

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    Drexel is amazing if you want engineering with co-ops.
     
  17. erincon23

    erincon23 <font color=blue>Everyone must have gotten a life

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    Acoustic engineering is probably the sound engineering program you mentioned -- Univ of Miami was one of the other schools we found with this major when we were looking. (acoustic engineering is like designing concert halls for the best acoustics, amplification systems for voice or instrument, etc).
     
  18. golfgal

    golfgal DIS Cast Member<br><font color=green>When did vacu

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    I checked Davidson's website since it looks like we are going to be in the general area for Spring Break-the have NO WOMAN'S GOLF :scared1:. How can a college in the Carolinas not have woman's golf :confused3:lmao: They must use the same website developer that my college uses because they look exactly alike :lmao:. If we have bad weather one day we may swing through there anyway. I can see DS15 going there.
     
  19. java

    java <font color=darkorchid>I am embracing the Turkey B

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    Drexel was ds number one pick until we spoke with parents of students there- and learned tuition is way higher than you would imagine- They do offer the 5 year masters program and offer some great internships- but for that price- it's off the list. When all was said and done(room and board and tuition- ) one person ended up paying $60,000!:scared1:

    Purdue is one we are going to check out. Computer sciences-he likes the specialized fields they offer. But we are from NJ and I think it's going to be a bit too small town feel for him. That's why we want to check it out.

    We went to visit Salem U in MA and that was a bust.
     
  20. MoniqueU

    MoniqueU <font color=peach>Anything with Malibu in it is gr

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    I would stress to much being a state away about it breaking down, drinking and driving and accidents in general. Not to meniton I want im studying and experiencing school and not on the road doing lord knows what else. Parking is also about 700 a semester at ASU. There are alot of free busses and ligt rail/bus combo to the airport. We will drive him out there and get him settled in though.
     
  21. DVCLiz

    DVCLiz <font color=00cc00>That's me - proud defender of t

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    I started another thread but I'll add to this one as well. The college DD17 is interested in is Eckerd in St. Petersburg. Any thoughts?

    A great small liberal arts college in SC is Wofford. DD22 graduated last year and works as an admissions counselor there. I'll be glad to answer any questions.

    As far as cars are concerned, here are my thoughts. I wanted DD to be as independent as possible. Parking at her college was convenient and inexpensive. I didn't want to have to make a 6 hour round trip each time she came home. I wanted her to learn how to make good decisions and handle car repairs on her own.

    She's done a great job all four years and now is out on her own.

    NOT that I think this about any DIS parent, but I do see in some of my friends a tendency to treat college freshmen as 13th graders. That's not what I wanted so I went pretty far in the other direction.
     

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