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Worth a visit?

havenoideahavenoidea 348 replies17 threads Member
We will be taking C21 on some college visits, and it is 2 plane rides and a drive to get to most LAC in the NE. C21 has the rigor, grades, ECs for admission (Including prestigious awards and programs), but 1st SAT was slightly below 1400 (will take ACT, and prob SAT again). C21 is not a good test taker (does very well in school, but always last to finish, works on projects longer, isn’t fast at anything, including doing SAT math problems (but is in AP calc AB doing well). I know Bates is test optional, but is this true even for upper middle class Caucasian?

Also, here’s a description of C21: very politically aware social justice type, student gov/newspaper lover, outdoorsy (camping/snowboarding), hates cliques, would prefer a city or somewhere where there are things to do outside of campus where you mingle with people from all backgrounds, ages, etc., doesn’t know major but journalism is a consideration.

Can you tell from this whether we should make the trip to visit Bates? Are there other suggestions?

Thank you!
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Replies to: Worth a visit?

  • lookingforwardlookingforward 35362 replies399 threads Senior Member
    The visits are what narrowed down D1's preferences and choices. Ok, that and whether her major was available and the depth/breadth of courses in that.

    If it's going to mean two flights and a drive, consider also that that's what it'll take every time he comes and goes. Is that feasible?

    D1 was/is very socially aware- and active. Finding a college where that's a value, promoted, and facilitated, was important. "Mingling" socially off campus was less than the chance to be active locally or beyond.

    Bates fit that. In spades. Look at their community partnerships and more.

    Look at on campus activities, events, clubs, etc, for the day to day fit.

    Yes, test optional applies to all.
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  • LindagafLindagaf 10476 replies576 threads Super Moderator
    edited November 2019
    I agree that TO applies to all. Many of D’s friends applied TO.

    Are you flying into Boston? It’s a two hour drive. Much closer to fly into Portland, if you’re taking two planes. Look into that option, especially if you want to see Bowdoin and Colby too.

    D knows kids from Hawaii, Washington State, India, Morocco, Thailand and Alaska, as well as a bunch of other far flung places. They all take multiple plane flights. Your child should know that he or she won’t be alone in that. It’s easy to get to Boston or Portland. Plus, they are young and can handle it.

    From how you describe your child, it sounds like Bates is a good fit. I can tell you that not everyone visits. Of the kids mentioned from above, a lot never set foot on campus until move in day. The college loves visits, but they fully understand it isn’t possible for everyone. No idea where you live, but two plane rides away tells me that your child might get a little boost in his/her app simply by not living a single plane ride away.:-)

    If you’re planning, say, a week in the NE to visit colleges, and LACs in particular, I think some others that might fit your child could be Middlebury, Connecticut College, Tufts, Skidmore, Vassar, and Wesleyan. Maybe Marist, as a less selective option. Universities might include Northeastern and Boston U. You need to check which of those might be test optional though. Your child’s score will be on the low side for schools like Middlebury, Wesleyan and Tufts, but more competitive for Marist, Connecticut College, and maybe Skidmore.

    I’m not sure that Bowdoin and Colby have quite the vibe it sounds like your child is looking for, though the three Maine NESCAC’s have a lot in common and you can find similar kids at probably all three schools. Many people check out all three. As an aside, my own child had no interest in Colby or Bowdoin and never visited. We drove up and back in a very long day just to visit and interview at Bates. She’s not social-justicey, but she definitely wanted a more relaxed, creative vibe and that’s what she found. She also likes Lewiston, which is not glamorous in any way. It’s working class, but there are still plenty of things to do, and great access to outdoor activities.

    Should add that no Greek life has always been super important to my D and she loves that there is none at Bates.

    To answer your question, if you are definitely coming to the Northeast, yes, Bates is worth a visit. Visiting and interviewing can help his/her application.

    edited November 2019
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  • mamaedefamiliamamaedefamilia 3695 replies24 threads Senior Member
    @havenoidea. Bates sounds like it ticks a lot of boxes for your child. When you mentioned outdoors recreation and journalism, Ithaca College also came to mind. It's a good 8 hour drive between it and Bates but with current SAT your child would probably be eligible for a decent merit scholarship. If you are contemplating a longer college road trip involving several schools, you might consider UVM (there is an Honors College and OOS merit available) and perhaps Vassar. Brandeis offers a journalism major and your child's current SAT is in range for accepted students. If your child is female, Smith (Northampton, MA) might be a good fit for personality, has a well-regarded writing program, and is test optional.
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  • TheGreyKingTheGreyKing Forum Champion Williams College 2259 replies104 threads Forum Champion
    edited November 2019
    Bates is a liberal arts college, but you certainly can become a journalist afterwards. My young relative, who is a successful journalist for a nationally known news publication, was a history major at Vassar before getting an advanced degree from the journalism school at Columbia.

    Bates is a wonderful college, well worth exploring.

    @mamaedefamilia mentioned Ithaca. My son’s good friend from high school is in a journalism honors program at Ithaca with a nifty scholarship— all expenses paid for four full years of tuition, room and board, equipment, and two semesters abroad. Not a bad deal! His SAT’s were mid-1400’s.

    Ithaca is not a big city, of course, but it is a buzzing college town— lots of restaurants and cultural events, with gorgeous gorges (“Ithaca is gorges”) and multiple waterfalls.

    I also agree that Brandeis might be a good fit for your son. It has the location he wants with the BranVan to Boston, and a social justice emphasis.

    (Neither Bates nor Brandeis seems to have a journalism major per se, from their online listing of undergraduate majors.)
    edited November 2019
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