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Parents Afraid College is Dangerous

Jleto18Jleto18 Registered User Posts: 295 Junior Member
So this past weekend I was accepted to one of my top schools and was, expectedly, stoked about it. My parents were as well....until today. Apparently, one of their friends had told them "horror stories" about how "dangerous" the school was, and now they told me they refuse to help me pay if I decide to go there. There is no way I could pay for the college by myself unless I work a full-time job, which, considering the rigor of the school, is not possible. This wouldn't be as big a deal if I didn't already withdraw from my safety school. So now, I have no backup. The only colleges I have left are high reaches with less than 10% acceptance rates, so the probability of me getting in are really low to say the least. What can I do if I don't get in? In 5 days I went from getting into one of the best engineering schools in the country to possibly not even being able to go to college. I don't know what to do.
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Replies to: Parents Afraid College is Dangerous

  • suzy100suzy100 Registered User Posts: 5,599 Senior Member
    What college?
  • Mwfan1921Mwfan1921 Registered User Posts: 1,180 Senior Member
    edited March 14
    You will get some good advice from parents and students that know the school if you identify it. Meanwhile, google "School name, Clery report" There you can see some, but not all, crime stats. You can also do research on the school newspaper's site, local news and police dept sites to fill in more details.
  • SevenDadSevenDad Registered User Posts: 4,302 Senior Member
    edited March 14
    Interesting that your parents are going on the word of a friend vs. news stories/crime stats.

    Assuming that it is not truly dangerous and just one person's opinion based on hearsay, I'd collect actual crime stat data showing that it is a relatively safe place. Any college with a real crime problem would experience a lot of bad PR, which would lead to a decline in applications....

    Also, there is a difference between a campus being "dangerous" and the city it is located in being unsafe. I'd probe more deeply into this before giving up on your dream.
  • Jleto18Jleto18 Registered User Posts: 295 Junior Member
    @suzy100 Georgia Tech

    @SevenDad I can believe it, unfortunately. They always believe what they hear from their "friends". I've showed them crime reports and stats for the college, clery report included, and they still refuse to believe it. In my experience from the times I've argued with them, it just makes things worse.
  • Mwfan1921Mwfan1921 Registered User Posts: 1,180 Senior Member
    edited March 14
    OP, Could your parents possibly have another reason(s) that they maybe don't want to say straight out, for example, concerns that GT is not affordable?

    One suggestion might be to post on the GT forum asking for people's experiences with crime on campus and the surrounding area. Then, when a bunch of posters say it's relatively safe, you can show your parents the thread.
  • damon30damon30 Registered User Posts: 574 Member
    @Jleto18 Google like you've never Googled before. Also use the search function on this site and look for everything about Georgia Tech and "safety", "dangerous", "crime", "concern" or any related term you can think of. Then report back here what you've found.
  • Jleto18Jleto18 Registered User Posts: 295 Junior Member
    @happy1 Thank you, I will definitely look into that. That's a great idea.

    @Mwfan1921 No, I'm in-state and qualify for the Zell scholarship. It's just as expensive as UGA, and they were fine with me going there. If I was OOS, then I could see an issue, but it's relatively cheap compared to others they are supposedly fine with me going to. I don't think they'd trust people online, they're in the whole "fake news" scam and don't trust anything except their friends, which is why they didn't care about the stats I showed them.
  • ucbalumnusucbalumnus Registered User Posts: 74,498 Senior Member
    edited March 14
    Jleto18 wrote:
    they're in the whole "fake news" scam and don't trust anything except their friends, which is why they didn't care about the stats I showed them.

    Perhaps it is not actual crime statistics that they are afraid of. GT's campus sits on the border of what appears to be one of Atlanta's racial segregation dividing lines, with predominantly white areas on one side, and predominantly black areas on the other side. If your parents hold prejudicial attitudes against either black or white people, that may be the reason they think that GT is "dangerous".

    http://www.city-data.com/neighborhood/Georgia-Tech-Atlanta-GA.html
    http://map.gatech.edu/
  • 3puppies3puppies Registered User Posts: 1,672 Senior Member
    Sorry that your parents are idiots. (kidding, I hope)

    Now, that that's out of the way, is there a way you can get your HS guidance counselor to ask to meet them in person, to review your options? If you meet with the GC first, and tell him/her what your thoughts are, they may have some idea how to help.

    It is tough for parents to begin to see their kids as ever old enough or wise enough to make their own decisions and even mistakes.

    Your parents have taught you how to make decisions - by getting good information from reputable sources. You should find a way to thank them for that, when you are asking them to talk about this topic.

    And they have taught you that sometimes your decisions won't match what they might have chosen. How boring life would be if our kids only ever chose what we would have chosen for them!

    But you understand that college is expensive and you can't afford to attend if you have to pay yourself. Since they are paying, how much discussion did they have before you applied?

    Through all of this, you do value their opinion (not to mention their wallet), so I am curious - What exactly are they proposing for you? Community college?

    Also, it is not clear why you have already rejected your safety school?

    When you talk to them about this, the more that you thank them for all of their help in raising you, remind them that you know this process is really hard for all of you - you because it is your future, and them because the life they have had for the past 17-18 years is soon going to be very different. And then say something like you're glad that they raised to to be able to think for yourself - and trying to figure out what to do means you obviously want their input. You're glad that they are around to help you make the best decision for your situation, by getting the real facts.

    You don't want to be accusative towards them. Remind them that you want them to be proud of you, for accepting their help in learning how to make one of the most important decisions you've had to make - what to do next.

    It can be helpful to say things like "Wow, from what I hear, it really seems like the college process is so much more complicated and competitive than it was back when you went to school - but there are some things where I have it so much easier than you guys did. I am glad you're always on my side wanting the best for me, helping me figure this out."

    Best of luck to you.
  • PennySPennyS Registered User Posts: 27 Junior Member
    JLeto18 I'm an Atlanta native (went to Georgia State) and married to a GT grad and wouldn't hesitate to attend myself or have one of my nieces and nephews there. Honestly if my nieces and nephews got into Tech I'd pay as much as I could to keep them there it's such a good school!! There is going to be crime in any big city and honestly at any college campus, I can't imagine there is any one safe bubble that students could attend. I'm curious as to what schools they are comfortable with, as I'm sure there are news stories for just about any university.

    It may make your parents more comfortable to know you're as street smart as possible - honestly everyone could probably use a self defense course, read "The Gift of Fear", have mace or whatever is allowed on campus along those lines just so you're able to protect yourself in a worst case scenario situation.

    I also want to congratulate you on the Zell Miller scholarship - that is a huge achievement and I hope you and your family are very proud of yourself! I was one of the original Hope graduates and am very thankful that I do not have student loan debt (I'm old enough that it was before things got watered down).
  • privatebankerprivatebanker Registered User Posts: 3,055 Senior Member
    @Groundwork2022 I’m going to borrow that if it’s ok!
  • Groundwork2022Groundwork2022 Registered User Posts: 1,315 Senior Member
  • ProfessorPlum168ProfessorPlum168 Registered User Posts: 2,435 Senior Member
    There are tons of elite universities bordering sketchy areas, from UC Berkeley to Yale to USC to UChicago to John Hopkins, etc etc. And yet at the same time, just in the last week alone you have a fraternity death and a stabbing in one of the most safest, elite pristine areas in the US, in UC-Irvine. So I would not go by crime statistics at all when determining a school. Just use common sense when walking around. I'm sure GT is perfectly fine.
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