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Duke Vs. Vandy

5mileapplication5mileapplication Posts: 14Registered User New Member
edited November 2012 in College Search & Selection
This question has probably been asked before, but what are some of the more outstanding characteristics of each institution that make one or the other more preferable?
I'm planning on an econ major, and I'm well aware that both Duke's economics program and the school itself are ranked higher. I'm not really looking for a discussion about prestige.
I want to know what opportunities are offered, how the social scene is, what the environment is like (I'm already liking the look of Nashville over Durham) class size, study abroad, research opportunities, internships, employment after graduation etc. Anything other than the rank on USNews to entice me. Thanks! :)
Post edited by 5mileapplication on
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Replies to: Duke Vs. Vandy

  • zobrowardzobroward Posts: 1,559Registered User Senior Member
    vandy!!
    duke has never come to terms with it's treatment of its lacrosse team! until all the group of 88 are fired (never going to happen) consider duke a school with an albatross.
  • warblersrulewarblersrule Posts: 8,649Super Moderator Senior Member
    zobroward, you are uninformed. Despite the vilification of the professors, they were not accusing the lacrosse players of being guilty. In fact, the second listening statement clearly stated that and expressed support for due process and the assumption of innocence. (One of my own professors signed the statement and has a white male lacrosse player for a son. Hardly nursing a grudge against them, LOL!) What the professors took issue with was an environment on campus that was somewhat conducive to rape and unfriendly toward victims coming forward about it, something I actually agree with (an example). In fact, it's something Yale ("no means yes and yes means...") and most recently Amherst have come to terms with as well. In response, Duke has implemented a more draconian sexual misconduct policy, something I fully support, and I think the environment at Duke is much better than it was even a few years ago. Incidentally, the only professor who flat out stated the lacrosse players were guilty was Houston Baker, who ended up at...Vanderbilt.


    5mileapplication, I have written about life at Duke many times before, as have others. Here's a couple such posts:

    http://talk.collegeconfidential.com/11384296-post13.html
    http://talk.collegeconfidential.com/14225148-post7.html


    If she does not weigh in on this thread, you should search for posts by Faline2. She's had a son at both universities and has written very fair and accurate posts comparing the two before. As she frequently points out, generally one is a better fit for someone than the other.
  • MomofWildChildMomofWildChild Posts: 17,026Registered User Senior Member
    I think Vanderbilt has the edge in atmosphere. Nashville is a great city and a fun place to go to college. SEC sports are great, even though Duke basketball is in a class of its own. Both have great academics. It really is a matter of fit.
  • muckdogs07muckdogs07 Posts: 1,166Registered User Senior Member
    Hard to go wrong at either school and thesde schools are comparable in so many ways. As a parent whose kids have applied to both schools, here are some observations and opinions (very subjective, I know). If academics are end all, both are very good but I would give slight edge to Duke based on FOCUS program and national reputation (exception, if you you are interested in education as Peabody is tops and Duke does not have a program; other exception, if you want to live in south east, Vandy is golden there, while Duke still viewed with a bit of suspicion in some circles due to influx of northerners (although Vandy catching up in this regard)). If sports are important, a close call but probably Vandy due to SEC (exception, Duke if all you care about is b-ball). If setting is important, Nashville is much more fun than Durham (although Durham is just seven miles from Chapel Hill). If integration in first year is important, probably Vandy as you are on campus, and I get the impression Vandy puts more focus on integrating first years. Both schools have a frat culture, but Vandy's probably a little higher profile than Duke's. Both schools have strong focus on teaching and professors often work with students outside the class room (ie research, social). Duke has more emphasis on writing.
  • zobrowardzobroward Posts: 1,559Registered User Senior Member
    warblersrule....I followed the duke lax case very very closely and what the school did to the entire team, the reaction from many groups on campus , the national media, and mike nifong was a terrible chapter that duke should be ashamed of and can not be swept under the rug. many groups wanted the narrative of rich white jokes raping a poor black woman to be true that they allowed this hoax to become the perfect storm. it should be a lesson for all college campuses and one duke can not just hide from (even after they bulldozed the lax house)
  • informativeinformative Posts: 1,725Registered User Senior Member
    Duke without question.
  • AxelrodAxelrod Posts: 663Registered User Member
    OP: Have you visited both schools ? If so, then decide based on fit & financials. If not, then visit both before deciding.
  • MomofWildChildMomofWildChild Posts: 17,026Registered User Senior Member
    informative- is not.
  • goldenboy8784goldenboy8784 Posts: 1,698Registered User Senior Member
    Both schools attract smart, well-rounded students but Duke has a much stronger recruiting pipeline to the business world (especially in the NE and California) and its faculty is more highly regarded in nearly every field besides education as MWC pointed out. This may or may not matter to you depending on what you want out of college.
  • informativeinformative Posts: 1,725Registered User Senior Member
    Duke also has a better reputation in the larger markets in the northeast.
  • 5mileapplication5mileapplication Posts: 14Registered User New Member
    I didn't have the cash on hand to make it to either school, which is mainly why I'm asking. I know Duke is more liable to land me a job faster, but will going to Vandy really hurt me job market-wise enough to be concerned about it?
  • timetodecide12timetodecide12 Posts: 669Registered User Member
    I didn't have the cash on hand to make it to either school, which is mainly why I'm asking. I know Duke is more liable to land me a job faster, but will going to Vandy really hurt me job market-wise enough to be concerned about it?

    Vanderbilt places well in New York, Chicago, and Washington DC and have strong alumni ties in each of these cities; you won't have any problem finding a good job. The weaknesses of Vanderbilt are the west coast (aside from SF and LA) and internationally but they have huge strides in the last few years.
  • MomofWildChildMomofWildChild Posts: 17,026Registered User Senior Member
    If you spend 4 years at Vanderbilt you won't want to go back to the northeast anyway!
  • GoDoresGoDores Posts: 49Registered User Junior Member
    Vandy alum here.

    You won't want to go back to the NE.

    A Vanderbilt degree will only help you land that first job.
  • 5mileapplication5mileapplication Posts: 14Registered User New Member
    Well it sounds like I'm just going to have to see who accepts me and visit each campus in April. Nashville especially seems like an incredible place!
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