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Echols Scholar

GreyWolfGreyWolf Posts: 281Registered User Junior Member
edited February 2012 in University of Virginia
Just got an email notifying me of my status as an Echols Scholar. Just wondering if someone can give me some firsthand knowledge about the program.
Post edited by GreyWolf on
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Replies to: Echols Scholar

  • charriencharrien Posts: 21Registered User New Member
    I also got notified today! I'm wondering as well about the program - is it really prestigious? How does it change your experience at UVA? What is it like living in the Echols Scholars community?
  • plue00plue00 Posts: 668Registered User Member
    Being Echols gets you out of a lot of stupid requirements and gives you priority registration. You also get to live in the newest buildings your first year and can make your own major I think.

    More info: Echols — Echols Scholars Program, Arts & Sciences, U.Va.
  • h1lberth1lbert Posts: 113Registered User Junior Member
    I was accepted as well! I hadn't heard much about it at all until a few hours ago...

    Sent from my VM670 using CC App
  • RavenclawGirlRavenclawGirl Posts: 42Registered User Junior Member
    As an Echols Scholar, I can speak from experience. Echols scholars are the same as any other UVA students, with a few key exceptions:

    -No distribution requirements, including foreign language and first year writing requirement
    -Early registration in relation to your class. For example, a first year Echols scholar will register before the rest of the first years, but after the regular second years
    -During your first year, all Echols scholars live together in the Balz Dobie or Watson Webb dorms. It's the newest dorm on grounds, as it was just completed this summer, and both are absolutely beautiful. We call them the hotels.
    -Separate "Association Dean." He's pretty awesome.

    Other than that, Echols scholars are indistinguishable. It's important to note that Echols scholars do NOT get access to any sort of special honors classes.

    Let me know if you have any more questions, and congratulations!!!
  • charriencharrien Posts: 21Registered User New Member
    where do echols scholars live later on? do they have the option to live in those dorms for the rest of their time at UVA? or will they live with non echols after that
  • jc40jc40 Posts: 1,579Registered User Senior Member
    There are no special housing accommodations other than the first year for Echols/Rodman kids. Also, Echols scholars can actually obtain an Echols major where they basically structure their own degree. Unlike the Jefferson scholars, Echols/Rodman students do not receive any $. Lastly, if a student was not selected as an entering first year, he/she may apply in the spring of their first year. The selection process for entering first years can be somewhat subjective and factors other than pure stats come into play; hence, there will invariably be some very, very high stat students who are in the top 10% of the profile who are not selected. The process for those first years trying to get Echols in the spring is also slightly subjective; however, it's definitely more stat based than anything else.
  • UVaSystems2012UVaSystems2012 Posts: 85Registered User Junior Member
    charrien- most students end up living with their friends (who may be their scholars roommates from first year) as upperclassmen. We actually ran a survey to see if there was interest in upperclass honors housing, but the vast majority of scholars didn't want it beyond first year because they'd started living with friends.
  • RavenclawGirlRavenclawGirl Posts: 42Registered User Junior Member
    It should be noted that non-Echols scholars can also structure their own major. It's just called the "Interdisciplinary Major" instead.
  • 10iswarrior10iswarrior Posts: 362Registered User Member
    I am a First-Year Echols Scholar and I am loving my time here at UVa. Since everybody's brought up the perks, I'm just going to talk about my personal experiences with those benefits. It's nice to live with other Echols Scholars because of the environment that you are placed in. Everybody's respectful of your academic needs and goals and you have a lot of common ground with other Scholars (I'm not saying this isn't the case with other dorms, but this is my personal experience). The new buildings are really nice too. What's also really nice is that you're exempt from distribution requirements. This really frees up your schedule to take advanced courses early on in your time at UVa. Right now, as a second semester First-Year, I'm taking 3 3000-level courses (two are science) and then accelerated organic chemistry and its lab (1820 and 1821). Without requirements I've been able to focus on what interests me and really dive into my academic pursuits and its been awesome.

    A note about the priority registration, I actually signed up before some Second-Years for the Spring semester which was odd...

    There is a stigma attached to being an Echols Scholar since some of the general population is not overly fond of us (filling up their classes, nicer dorms, etc.). Most people aren't like this, but I have met a few. I just felt that you should be aware; it hasn't impeded on my college experience in the slightest though.

    If you have any questions feel free to ask or PM me and congratulations on your admissions to UVa!
  • NoviceMommaNoviceMomma Posts: 25Registered User New Member
    My daughter has been notified of her Rodman Scholar status. Will her general experience be the same as the Echols Schoalrs?
  • cavalier302cavalier302 Posts: 4,343Registered User Senior Member
    I'm an alumnus of the Echols program. The primary benefits of the program are the freedom from distribution requirements (although most Echols Scholars would have placed out of a number of them) and the housing with other Echols and Rodman Scholars. There's not much else that I found useful - it's more of a designation that the University gives out in lieu of merit scholarship money. The designation isn't completely useless - certain employers do notice it on resumes and are very interested in speaking with Echols Scholars. Early registration for classes sounds nice on paper but the kinds of classes I was interested in didn't exactly have waiting lists.

    The cons? Nothing in particular, although the living situation during my first year was somewhat isolated from the more social part of the first year dorms. Echols Scholars aren't the most social bunch, and being up Observatory Hill (away from Old Dorms) doesn't help things. I'm not sure how it's changed with the demolition of the old New Dorms and the construction of Balz-Dobie and Watson-Webb.

    NoviceMomma, Rodman Scholars live in the same dorms as Echols Scholars. I believe they have some activities in the engineering school and fasttracked access to research as well.
  • UVaSystems2012UVaSystems2012 Posts: 85Registered User Junior Member
    NoviceMomma: The Rodman program is much smaller than Echols (25-30 or so), so they build a much stronger community. Most of the benefits aside from priority registration are centered around that -- honors-only classes you take with other Rodmans, social events and trips, a Rodman-only study abroad program, etc.
  • 10iswarrior10iswarrior Posts: 362Registered User Member
    I agree with UVaSystems2012, the Rodman program is much closer knit. From what I hear, the Rodman program isn't too different than the regular engineering program although they do have a couple of mandatory classes that they have to take. All of the Rodmans that I know are brilliant people so congratulations to your daughter!
  • yankee1yankee1 Posts: 1Registered User New Member
    If you didn't hear about Echols and you were admitted EA, is there any chance of an Echols invitation with the regular admission pool in March/April?

    Thanks.
  • h00rayh00ray Posts: 16Registered User New Member
    @NoviceMomma - The other posters are correct. The Rodman program does tend to be more close-knit than the Echols program. Both represent the top 5-6% of the entering class, which is necessarily a smaller group for engineers than it is for students in CLAS. I've found that while Echols get out of requirements by virtue of being Echols scholars, Rodmans actually have more requirements. These include a two-semester ENGR (Intro to Engineering) sequence, which I found to be a wonderful way to get closer to the others in my class and our program director, as well as a way to get real engineering experience. Furthermore, they will be required to take four one-credit Rodman Seminars (we call them "rodsems") during their time at U.Va., but there are plenty of really fun ones (including a Beer-Brewing one just for fourth years!).

    The Rodman Scholars Council, which is the governing body of the Rodman Scholars, also does a lot to plan activities for Rodmans. These include networking events, career events, social events, Rodman vs. Echols Capture the Flag, etc. I've found that the people I've stayed closest to during my time so far (current third year) are the other Rodmans in my year. Let me know if you have any other questions, I'd be happy to answer them!
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