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Help a geeky girl find a college?

kellyr017kellyr017 Posts: 25Registered User New Member
So, I'm pretty much a geek. My friends are video game and anime fanatics, and I myself am huge on Asian TV shows. I also self-study Japanese. I'm also not super socially adept, though I can manage. I'd also describe myself as a bit of a hippy type - I like to lay in the grass on a sunny day, and I like to walk around barefoot and spontaneously break into a dance. Diversity is important to me (or at least, empathy and respect for everyone), and I'm the president of my school's Gay-Straight Alliance.

Basically, I like being with "weird" (read: interesting) people like myself, though there are fine lines between my type of people, hipsters, and stuffy, overly-academic types. I'm also looking into small, liberal arts schools, which tend to have gratuitous amounts of rich white kids, one of which I am not (and I go to a preppy private school, and I'm tired of said rich white kids). I don't mind a mix of these types, but I want to go somewhere where I feel like I can belong for once.

These are the schools I'm thinking of:
Earlham College
Lewis & Clark College
Beloit College
Macalester College
Occidental College
Mount Holyoke College
Barnard College
Oberlin College

I haven't decided what I'd like to study, but I'm thinking up a hodgepodge of Creative Writing/English, Sociology, and/or Japanese Studies. My list includes my safeties, my "I think I'll get in here"s, and my reaches. My ideal school is in/near a city (New York or Boston - East Coast preferably, as that's where I'm from, but I'll look at West Coast because I love it and don't know many schools there). That's why I'm a little wary of Beloit, Earlham, and Oberlin. However, if the community is astounding enough yet it's in Podunk, Nowhere, I will take a look for sure.

Please suggest schools for me! Any suggestions or even some info about the schools on my list is more than welcome!
Post edited by kellyr017 on
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Replies to: Help a geeky girl find a college?

  • HatshepsutHatshepsut Posts: 664Registered User Member
    I would suggest Hampshire


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  • floridadad55floridadad55 Posts: 2,262Registered User Senior Member
    How about Reed College in Portland?.

    Or Bard in New York State.
  • ace747ace747 Posts: 77Registered User Junior Member
    I would second floridadad's suggestion of Reed. Based on what you described, I'd say that maybe Vassar or Wesleyan (both in New England, both highly selective) could be a good fit, or Pitzer College on the west coast. Grinnell and Kenyon probably fall under your category of Podunk, Nowhere (xD) but they might be good fits for your personality as well, so you should at least check them out! Good luck with your search.
  • kellyr017kellyr017 Posts: 25Registered User New Member
    Thank you all for the suggestions! I've considered Reed and Hampshire already and pretty much ruled them out. And I honestly don't think I could get into Reed, sigh. Bard seems pretty nice. I have considered Pitzer, so maybe I'll take a second look - I couldn't quite figure out if it was "geeky" or not! But the Claremont College thing they have going and also California are very appealing. :) Thanks again!
  • siliconvalleymomsiliconvalleymom Posts: 3,685Registered User Senior Member
    I think your list is a good one, but I am not sure that Occidental really fits your hoped-for type of student body.
  • samuelarnoldsamuelarnold Posts: 78Registered User Junior Member
    look in the library, (obviously has knowledge if she can read)
    and look to your hearts content and just inro yourself and say something like "thats a wonderful book" or something to get her attention.
  • SnowdogSnowdog Posts: 1,543Registered User Senior Member
    Bryn Mawr.

    I am an alum you can pm me if you have any questions
  • Erin's DadErin's Dad Posts: 19,689Super Moderator Senior Member
    For those interested in the OP's stats (from another thread):
    Rising senior
    Female, caucasian
    State: Pennsylvania
    Attends a pretty rigorous college prep school
    UW GPA: 3.4
    (Note: The only APs my school offers are language classes at the 5 Level, and I'm taking one. There's also advanced math but I honestly had no shot at those.)
    SAT: 2020 (650 M, 650 W, 720 CR)
    OP, your interests are very similar to DD2's (Anime club, climbing trees, walking bare foot). She was self-studying Japanese when we went out to Lewis and Clark for her freshman year. She will be taking spring semester in Japan which will basically complete her Japanese Studies minor. She also applied to Earlham and Oberlin because they fit well.

    A more important question is what can your family afford?
  • M's MomM's Mom Posts: 4,562Registered User Senior Member
    Grinnell is a fit culturally, although a reach for you. Great financial aid, though. Japanese is offered for 2 years of lang and lit but not as a major.
  • kellyr017kellyr017 Posts: 25Registered User New Member
    siliconvalleymom: Yeah, I wasn't sure about Occidental. I mostly just liked the location, I suppose. But if I did go West Coast, I'd want a school that was perfect.

    Snowdog: I have considered Bryn Mawr, and it's in Pennsylvania, which is my home state. And its proximity to Philly is very appealing. Maybe I'll take a second look, and I'll be in touch if I consider it seriously. Thank you. :)

    Erin's Dad: Yes, it sounds like your DD2 and I are very alike! :) And I see she made the cross country move. Anyway, thank you for your input. My family is in a bit of a bind financially at the moment (divorce is a messy, messy thing), so I will be searching for considerable help. I would be willing to sacrifice a higher-ranked school if I got in (e.g. Oberlin) for a lesser known school (like Earlham) if they offered me more money. How does your daughter find L&C socially and academically? And, from your perspective, how is it in terms of financial aid?

    M's Mom: Yes, I've taken a look at Grinnell. It seems nice, but I'd really like to take Japanese studies pretty seriously, so I don't think it's worth the possibility of rejection. Thank you for the suggestion, though. :)
  • guidedbywireguidedbywire Posts: 220Registered User Junior Member
    From your research and initial list you probably already know that Earlham is very strong in Japanese Studies and has a study abroad option, too.
  • Erin's DadErin's Dad Posts: 19,689Super Moderator Senior Member
    Kelly, sorry to hear about your family situation. L&C requires the CSS profile for FA, but in your favor, they do not consider NCP info. We did not qualify for FA. From their Common Data Set http://www.lclark.edu/live/files/7721-cds-h-2010 it seems their FA is pretty good but they do not meet need. As far as how D sees the school, she loves it. She has many friends she hangs out with and goes downtown just about every weekend. There are also all kinds of performances/sports events/etc she attends on campus. I am sure you would be challenged academically.
  • jkiwmomjkiwmom Posts: 1,353Registered User Senior Member
    My D is similar too --a passion for anime and Japanese (3 yrs. now), add in art, piercings, lots of hippie skirts and she's also barefoot as much as possible. She doesn't take herself too seriously, so although she's smart, she doesn't quite fit in with the more intellectual crowd. It's been a challenge to find schools that A. have a Japanese program, B. have a slight hippie vibe, and C. aren't overly intellectual. Bryn Mawr is very intellectual, so just pointing that out in case you are a goof ball as well as geeky, like my D, lol!

    I agree, Oxy is not quite as good a fit as the others. Pitzer may fit well and it is worth it to look into Hampshire. You can take Japanese at either U of Mass. or Amherst as a part of the 5 college consortium (Amherst was voted as #1 college town recently). You probably have the same sort of arrangement with Pitzer and the Claremont colleges (if Japanese isn't offered at Pitzer, have no idea?). Lewis & Clark seems IDEAL, and I would also look at U of Puget Sound.

    Warren Wilson offers an Asian studies major and has a very strong creative writing program. It's one of their few programs where they also offer a masters degree. You can travel abroad, and the nearby city of Asheville is something that definitely adds to the charm of WW. It's also one of the less expensive privates (31K yr less a 3K work study that everyone is required to participate).

    Once you figure out what your family can afford, then start narrowing down the list. Are you able to visit any schools?
  • qialahqialah Posts: 1,637Registered User Senior Member
    I hope you will keep Oberlin on your list--great creative writing and great Asian studies. They also have a fantasy themed dorm.

    Oberlin College | Resed Housing | Sci-Fi Hall
  • siliconvalleymomsiliconvalleymom Posts: 3,685Registered User Senior Member
    qialah, kudos for finding that dorm...that sounds like an amazing fit for this OP!
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