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amherst v middlebury

gman3000gman3000 Registered User Posts: 5 New Member
edited August 2007 in Amherst College
what are the differences? mostly in the social life and general feel of the campuses/surrounding areas. what are the schools best known for (im thinking i wanna do international stuff and/or languages) thanks!
Post edited by gman3000 on

Replies to: amherst v middlebury

  • BrownPleaseBrownPlease Registered User Posts: 237 Junior Member
    middlebury is the arguably the premiere school for languages/international studies in the word.
  • FreeFree113FreeFree113 - Posts: 321 Member
    I don't think you'll find a real difference in the social life between both schools, though I think Amherst has more of a frat scene (Middlebury has no frats, but rather "social houses") and is a bit smaller (1,650 Amherst vs. 2,350 Middlebury). Amherst, while still quite rural by most peoples standards, is in a more populated area than Middlebury and is closer to some other colleges/universities, while Middlebury is a bit more isolated (though I think visiting other schools while at Amherst is a bit more of a hypothetical than most people make it out to be). Middlebury does indeed have exceptional international studies/language programs (the school is best known for these two programs as well as its Environmental Studies program). The students at both schools are quite similar, though Amherst is a bit more selective. You would be hard pressed, however, to get a better undergraduate education in foreign studies and languages than at Middlebury. Both are excellent schools, you can't go wrong with either.
  • ejr1ejr1 Registered User Posts: 1,128 Senior Member
    D was accepted at both, and we visited them. Middlebury is quite rural, beautiful countryside, but remote. Most of the kids seemed to be into outdoor activities - hiking, skiing, etc. We were there during the fifth season - mud season, and it was no fun! The town is very small, and it is 45 minutes to Burlington, which is larger. Middlebury seemed more laid back, more homespun. Amherst seems more energetic, alive, the town has more to offer, shopping, and restaurants, and with the other schools around, more vibrant. Those were our impressions, but others may feel differently. As to the languages, I agree, but D is doing the Midd program overseas, and we are getting very worried. They are totally hands off, whereas her friends' programs are more helpful. They also are late getting us info, so it is costing us money. seem very disorganized. Not up to their normal standards.
  • LemonjelloLemonjello Registered User Posts: 453 Member
    freefree, Amherst doesn't have frats anymore.
  • FreeFree113FreeFree113 - Posts: 321 Member
    Ah, my mistake...
  • rhcp07rhcp07 Registered User Posts: 36 Junior Member
    Amherst's frats have just gone "underground." From my experience visiting and talking to people who go to Midd, it sounds like the social houses and Amherst's underground frats are about the same in campus influence. They're an additional party spot, but by no means the big draw that frats are on other campuses. I felt like Midd's social scene could become a little stale after a while. Its isolation, while beneficial in many ways, makes the scene less varied than at a school with more off-campus opportunities. Just my take!
  • fhimas88888888fhimas88888888 Registered User Posts: 1,871 Senior Member
    middlebury is the arguably the premiere school for languages/international studies in the world.

    According to who? Take a look at the rankings in "Foreign Policy" magazine [page 65 or page 4 of 7]. Neither Amherst nor Middlebury rank in the top 20 for studying international relations/foreign policy. In fact, it is only Williams and Swarthmore, the only two LACs on the list, that made the cut for the top 20.

    http://mjtier.people.wm.edu/IvoryTower%202007.pdf
  • EntenduEntendu Registered User Posts: 20 New Member
    I could care less either way, but at least take the time to check the methodology before you spout a bunch of nonsense. Since when has an opinion poll been an accurate indicator of a school's program? Even if it is of international relations faculty, it's still tenuous at best. This is basically the USNews rankings, but worse.
  • ejr1ejr1 Registered User Posts: 1,128 Senior Member
    When D was picking her overseas programs, her advisors all said to take Middlebury's because anyone in languages knows that name, but didn't know the others that she was contemplating. Their rep for languages is awesome, don't know about the IR.
  • toraseetorasee Registered User Posts: 573 Member
    Languages and IR are two different things. Amherst is a major training camp for the CIA (or so I've been told) so it probaby has it all over Middlebury in the IR area. (Recent CIA directors William Webster (GHW Bush), Stansfield Turner (Carter), and John Deutch (Clinton) are all Amherst alums.)
  • arcadiaarcadia Registered User Posts: 2,538 Senior Member
    The CIA has taken out full-page recruitment ads in the Middlebury alumni magazine every month for the past year. They also asked Middlebury to set up a separate summer language program for CIA agents, but the college refused.

    Ten percent of Middlebury students are international students, and the international studies major is the most popular antipated major choice among students enrolling this fall. The college also took control of the Monterey Institute of International Studies last year. There's a reason Newsweek named Middlebury "the hottest school for international studies" in their college guide.
This discussion has been closed.