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Bates College

Entropy26Entropy26 5 replies1 threads New Member
In your point of view, What makes Bates college unique?
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Replies to: Bates College

  • Entropy26Entropy26 5 replies1 threads New Member
  • Entropy26Entropy26 5 replies1 threads New Member
  • Entropy26Entropy26 5 replies1 threads New Member
  • Sue22Sue22 6778 replies118 threads Senior Member
    If you asked Bates students what they love about their school I think you'd hear about friendly students, close relationships with faculty, great internships and service learning opportunities and other factors, but since those are available at other schools as well I'll list some of the things I think are unique, or almost unique, to Bates.

    -Its history of inclusiveness. Bates admitted women and black students from the start and has never had sororities and fraternities.. Only Oberlin can claim a similar history.

    -Short Term. It's similar to other schools' January term, but by having it at the end of the year the college can provide a greater range of opportunities, some of which can bleed into the summer.

    -The Purposeful Work initiative, which focuses not only on helping students gain the skills and experience they need to get jobs, but figure out what they want to do with their lives, what kind or work will be fulfilling and meaningful to them.

    -Puddle Jump. A fun tradition!
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  • LindagafLindagaf 10175 replies565 threads Senior Member
    I agree with all that @Sue22 has said. I will emphasize that May Short Term is very popular. It gives all the students a chance to spend more time outdoors during a warmer time of year, and there are so many interesting classes on offer, including study abroad. Students get to enjoy somewhere different, but not in the winter, and before peak tourist season begins.

    My D likes that in the least diverse state, Lewiston itself has an interesting mix of Somalians and French Canadians. It’s proximity to the middle school means that young people interact with Bates students on a regular basis and Bates is actively involved in Lewiston schools. I think most Bates kids are proud to be in Lewiston. Lewiston itself has unquestionably improved in the four years we’ve been going there.

    Bates’ Brooks-Quimby Debate Society is open to all. My D joined as a freshman with no previous experience and was so well coached that after just a couple of months she beat a team from HYP. It gave her a fantastic introduction to public speaking. Debate isn’t unique, but for such a small college to do so well nationally and internationally is pretty impressive. In 2017, BQ was 4th in the world.

    One HUGE and totally unique pro: Clayton Spencer. She has been an amazing catalyst of change and an advocate for Bates. The things she has done and continues to do for the school are great. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clayton_Spencer
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  • lookingforwardlookingforward 35303 replies399 threads Senior Member
    The rigor of the curriculum. From my perspective, it's pretty no-nonsense.
    Community partnerships.

    But I hate what sounds like a "Help me with my Why Bates." In many respects, it's unique and before applying, you should be able to grasp that on your own. Be the sort who did your own due diligence.

    Not ask such a critical question of strangers. If this weren't app season, I might think differently.
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  • homerdoghomerdog 6519 replies111 threads Senior Member
    I think our D21 should consider Bates. It doesn’t fit some of the things she thinks makes a school “fit” her like warmer weather and the possibility for Greek life and big school spirit. BUT after seeing how her brother is enjoying Bowdoin and knowing she really wants the LAC experience, I think we are going to visit. It’s also a plus for her to be near him and she’s told us that. The thing that makes me hesitate is that she will find her people there. S19 has found it very easy because he’s an athlete. She is not. In fact, she’s a dancer and many LACs really don’t have outlets for that for her. She’s trained preprofessionally as a ballerina but recently has decided to give them up. She’s on the dance team at school which is pretty intense jazz and hip hop.

    I think she’s going to have to give up something in her search. Bates is close to big bro, will have good food and nice dorms (which have moved up in importance after seeing S19’s experience) and will give her the close knit community and small classes she wants.

    Any opinion on whether a midwestern suburban girl can fit there? She likes the ideal of diversity but, to be honest, she will need to see some kids there like herself. No one from our school has applied to Bates in four years which makes this tough. I think she would have to go ED to not get waitlisted.
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  • Sue22Sue22 6778 replies118 threads Senior Member
    Bates has great dance and it's not looked askance at by the [other] athletes. My daughter, a 3-sport HS athlete, took a class in the dance department as a senior along with another of her non-dance classmates. It was challenging but she really enjoyed it. I wonder if it would be worth it for your daughter to visit during the Bates Dance Festival.

    https://www.bates.edu/dance/prospective-students-2/
    https://www.batesdancefestival.org

    I also think Bates likes getting applications from outside the area from which they historically drew-Massachusetts, New York and New Jersey.
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  • homerdoghomerdog 6519 replies111 threads Senior Member
    @sue22 what??!! Wow! Thanks so much. I haven’t looked at their website much. Your links are super helpful. :)
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  • chardonMNchardonMN 173 replies12 threads Junior Member
    Our tour guide was a dance major. He was from California, and gave a great tour.
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  • lookingforwardlookingforward 35303 replies399 threads Senior Member
    They build a class with kids from all over. One thing many kids share is community involvement, once there. It's both an interest of the college and a financial/administrative commitment. Also look at the senior thesis or project.

    As for finding her people, there's surprising variety. Who are her people?
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  • Jon234Jon234 407 replies10 threads Member

    But I hate what sounds like a "Help me with my Why Bates."


    As far as I’m aware, there is no Bates supplement. I think they just use the common app. I think this is just a legitimate question and also enlightening.
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  • homerdoghomerdog 6519 replies111 threads Senior Member
    edited September 2019
    @lookingforward Well, if you're not from the Midwest, it's a little hard to describe. She's white-bread as maybe some people would say! We live in a boring, suburban Chicago that's not very diverse. (S19 just met a Jewish person for the first time in college...no joke.) She's not edgy. Upper middle class. She does like doing community service and dance as I mentioned.

    I also grew up in Chicago and went to Northwestern. I definitely identified most with the midwestern, suburban public school kids but I loved meeting kids from the NE and from the western US. This might seem like a vast generalization but those kids always seemed more independent, more interesting, but I was also a little intimidated by the private school kids. They just seemed older and had way more life experience. Not a bad thing, but I couldn't relate. At a smaller school like Bates, if a decent percent of kids are from the NE and/or private schools, I think she'd feel like a fish out of water.

    i just looked Only 5% from the Midwest in the last class. Hm.
    edited September 2019
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  • PublisherPublisher 10431 replies130 threads Senior Member
    @homerdog: I love your posts ! Honest & refreshing. Thank you for posting.
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  • Sue22Sue22 6778 replies118 threads Senior Member
    @homerdog, I understand your concern. You might want to ask your son for his opinion. Bowdoin seems to have a similar economic mix of kids as Bates.

    I would say that I think there's less of an East-Coast/Midwest difference than there used to be. Part of that's probably due to the internet but also changes in the mix of kids attending prep schools.
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  • LindagafLindagaf 10175 replies565 threads Senior Member
    edited September 2019
    @homerdog , I think you are familiar with my D’s story. She is not remotely interested in sports or the great outdoors, but you know she’s very happy. She is quiet, introspective, and creative. She’s found her people. Her fave people are from Hawaii, Florida, Tunisia, Washington State, and New Jersey, and a bunch of other places. One of her good friends went to a prep school. It isn’t about where you’re from, but, rather, who you are.

    My D was the first kid accepted to Bates from our high school in at least ten years, if not twenty, as far as we know. Bates now comes to our high school to recruit, and there are now more kids from our high school there. They like fresh blood, lol.

    A Midwestern dancer who loves community service sounds like a very appealing prospective Batesie to me. As you know, grades are king, but they care about other stuff too, and interest definitely matters. I’ve been to over thirty colleges now. Bates kids are my overwhelming favorites, but it’s fair to say I’m biased.
    edited September 2019
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  • homerdoghomerdog 6519 replies111 threads Senior Member
    @Lindagaf I continue to love hearing that your D made the right choice for her and is happy! Planning to have D visit Bates at some point during a visit to see S19. Her grades and rigor are good but hasn't attempted a standardized test yet but soon!
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  • PublisherPublisher 10431 replies130 threads Senior Member
    If your daughter does visit, I hope that you will share your thoughts & impressions.
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  • Jon234Jon234 407 replies10 threads Member
    homerdog wrote: »
    This might seem like a vast generalization but those kids always seemed more independent, more interesting, but I was also a little intimidated by the private school kids. They just seemed older and had way more life experience. Not a bad thing, but I couldn't relate. At a smaller school like Bates, if a decent percent of kids are from the NE and/or private schools, I think she'd feel like a fish out of water.

    i just looked Only 5% from the Midwest in the last class. Hm.

    They're all just kids when you get right down to it, with more things in common than not. I truly hope my kids meet and mix with kids from different backgrounds and with different experiences, tastes and interests in college. Your daughter might feel like a fish out of water to start but she will, hopefully, grow in such an environment. Like a lot of colleges, I'm tremendously impressed with Bates and it's students.

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  • milestones3milestones3 137 replies5 threads Junior Member
    My student graduated in '17. We live in the rural Smoky Mountain region--not a big source of students for Bates. Although he did not go to private school, he did attend a public boarding magnet school for his last 2 high school years, and administrators there could not remember the last time one of their students had even applied to Bates. He is introspective, introverted, nerdy, and an adamant non-drinker/chem-user. He enjoys the outdoors but is far from a jock. He loved Bates.

    Over the years his roommates included a pole vaulter/Asian Studies major from NC; a theater nerd/Classics major from New Jersey who also sang a cappella; a French horn player/Math major from California; and a member of a Maine lobstering family/Japanese major who invited him to their home up the coast. This group also reflected ethnic and religious diversity. He maintained a work-study job all through his four years in Commons (the dining hall--BTW, many people don't know that Bates, unlike most other colleges, owns its food service, and the locals who work there are justifiably proud of what they do, as they are Bates staff, not employees of a contractor). He became a leader in a club and enjoyed his friends there. If your daughter ends up at Bates, I believe she will find her people.

    Oh, and PS: I can't resist a plug for the Bates Career Development Center, which I think is fabulous. It pulls in recruiters from top firms and in my opinion provides spot-on guidance for students who use it. I believe my son would never have received that kind of attention at a large university. He had an excellent job waiting for him by the time he graduated, and he's still happily working there 2+ years later.
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