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Which of these schools is not like the others?


Replies to: Which of these schools is not like the others?

  • merc81merc81 Registered User Posts: 9,837 Senior Member
    Perhaps consider both aspects, then? A reasonably walkable town and the availability of a shuttle service.
  • techmom99techmom99 Registered User Posts: 3,340 Senior Member
    Based on your criterion of wanting a walkable town, I would cross off Hofstra. Hempstead is not my idea of someplace you would want your D just wandering around. I think there might be shuttles to the mall. All of the kids I know who attend currently are commuters.
  • allyphoeallyphoe Registered User Posts: 2,294 Senior Member
    She looked at the Common App supplemental essays for some of the schools tonight, and that was actually really helpful. Three schools came off the long list, on the grounds that the kid she is, is not the kid they're looking for. (Law of unintended consequences: "list every book you've read in the last 12 months" was a dealbreaker, because "How could I possibly list *every* book I've read? I don't want to go to school with people who could list all the books they read in a year!") About half the schools' topics caused her to joyfully overflow with opinions. She is not yet comfortable with talking about how she can contribute to a school's community, even though those contributions spill over when she's asked to talk about how she'd take advantage of the school community.
  • IBviolamomIBviolamom Registered User Posts: 415 Member
    If your daughter likes to walk and doesn’t like to be isolated, definitely keep Macalester! My daughter is a first year student there and the location can’t be beat as long as you can handle the winter. Almost everything you could possibly want is in walking distance including movie theater, places to eat, shopping, groceries, drugstores, etc. And the public transit is excellent and super cheap.

    I agree with @techmom99 about Hofstra. Most of Long Island requires a car. Hofstra is on a very busy multi-lane road and has enclosed bridges to cross it safely. The surrounding area is not very good. Hempstead has an extremely high rate of crime, drugs, gangs, etc.

    Best of luck!
  • OHMomof2OHMomof2 Registered User Posts: 12,617 Senior Member
    FWIW Smith and Mount Holyoke and Amherst have not a shuttle per se (though they do run them at breaks to the airports and cities, at least Amherst does), but rather a public bus system that students use for free. So service is very good in the Pioneer Valley, and is used to get to classes from one school to the other, and just to go shopping, exploring, etc.

    That said, Amherst and Smith have a lot in close walking distance. MoHo has less, but still a pleasant little town with restaurants, movies, shops.
  • allyphoeallyphoe Registered User Posts: 2,294 Senior Member
    edited March 2018
    Spring Break here last week, so I got more feedback about what my kid is looking for in terms of fit, and used that to narrow things down a bit more. Plus she decided she didn't care about any of the reach-for-everyone schools that want SAT subject tests enough to take subject tests, which also eliminated the two schools that had SCEA. Ability to apply non-binding EA moved one school that takes a *lot* of kids EA between groups. So the current list of higher-odds schools is:

    Smith College
    Bryn Mawr College
    Macalester College
    Whitman College
    University of Tulsa (local to us, which I think will be a dealbreaker in the end, because we all agree that she will do better far from home)
    Occidental College
    Mount Holyoke College
    Clark University
    Lake Forest College
    Knox College
    Lawrence University
    Mills College
    Kalamazoo College
    College of Wooster (34% RD acceptance, but EA changes that to 76%)
    Willamette University
    University of Puget Sound

    Agnes Scott fell off because of the emphasis on leadership, which she considers to be so much not her thing that she didn't think she'd be able to respond to the essay prompt.

    My guess is that the reachier end of the list, which currently has 18 schools, will eventually be narrowed down to Scripps, Barnard, and one or two coed schools. Unless she turns into a very different person in the next year, which is entirely possible!
  • allyphoeallyphoe Registered User Posts: 2,294 Senior Member
    edited April 2018
    Tour today: University of Tulsa.

    Initial impression: "This is too close to home, so I would never seriously consider it."
    Final impression: "Even though it's too close to home, I think I'd actually be pretty happy if I ended up here."

    Pros: friendly students, extremely welcoming professors who obviously knew their students as individuals, Greek life described as low-key, the dead-silent quiet room in the library, "I felt like everyone really wanted me to go there."

    Cons: still too close to home, humanities seemed to be treated as an afterthought by the students, lovely new suite-style dorms (Hardesty Hall) felt cramped.
  • allyphoeallyphoe Registered User Posts: 2,294 Senior Member
    New data dump, and a different rating methodology produced a new list. The primary difference was in weighting, but DD also requested a change in criteria: she cares a lot about sunshine, but not really at all about whether other people are out drinking and Greeking.

    On both the old list and the new, including reaches:
    121345 Pomona College
    121257 Pitzer College
    161004 Bowdoin College
    189097 Barnard College
    168342 Williams College
    153384 Grinnell College
    212911 Haverford College
    168218 Wellesley College
    123165 Scripps College
    207971 University of Tulsa
    167835 Smith College
    173902 Macalester College
    211273 Bryn Mawr College
    120254 Occidental College
    166939 Mount Holyoke College
    239017 Lawrence University
    118888 Mills College

    Match / likely additions:
    173258 Carleton College
    233374 University of Richmond
    229267 Trinity University
    212009 Dickinson College
    221351 Rhodes College
    136950 Rollins College

  • porcupine98porcupine98 Registered User Posts: 1,620 Senior Member
    Really nice (and coherent) list. No serious ringers amongst the ones I'm familiar with. I'd happily go to most of them myself!

    Given that it's well stocked with reaches, I'm curious what bumped match/safety College of Wooster off the list. (My kid, who liked/applied to a bunch of these, and ended up at one also liked CoW.) Is Denison on your radar? I know you're not really looking to add names here, just thinking about the less reachy (and more merit-y) end of things.
  • porcupine98porcupine98 Registered User Posts: 1,620 Senior Member
    I'm not personally familiar with it, but based on buzz and a tiny amount of Googling (check Niche, though I always take that with a huge grain of salt) I think Rollins might be the ringer in this list in terms of student body/vibe. Others who know the school better may think differently.
  • NEPatsGirlNEPatsGirl Registered User Posts: 2,950 Senior Member
    What a well crafted, thought out list. You are certainly doing your homework :) I'm a big fan of Dickinson and think it should be added to your list.
  • roycroftmomroycroftmom Registered User Posts: 2,454 Senior Member
    Another consideration is accessibility from your home. If you are in the Midwest, some of these schools are quite difficult and expensive to travel to, which will likely decrease your student's ability to visit over breaks. We discounted some schools that required a flight connection and long drive.
  • HapworthHapworth Registered User Posts: 482 Member
    edited April 2018
    Nice list, though I'm sad to see that my alma mater was axed (Knox College). Oh well. I kind of agree with @porcupine98 that Rollins feels like the school that is not like the others. I live in Orlando and drive past Rollins often. Rollins is unique. It's a liberal arts college, but it has a different vibe that is difficult to describe. The stereotype is white, wealthy, and party-loving. It's also a magnet for northeasterners. I'd say there's a stronger pre-professional interest among the student body. Still, it's a fine school, and it has one of the most beautiful campuses you'll ever see. Lake Forest College might be a good comp for Rollins. A work colleague who literally sits at the desk beside me graduated from Rollins. If Rollins becomes a finalist for your D, I can ask questions, though I believe that there are Rollins students here who post sometimes.
  • allyphoeallyphoe Registered User Posts: 2,294 Senior Member
    Honestly, at this point I'd be surprised if DD applied to more than one reach. She really wants to go someplace that loves her best. That part of the list is still long because it's been pretty much ignored.

    COW's only negative point was comparatively few sunny days, where sunshine got a really heavy weight. Other than that, it was just slightly less awesome than the other choices when I did a "you liked TU well enough; let's make the list shorter by eliminating the schools that the algorithm says aren't as good."

    Denison had as negative factors sunshine, food quality, and reported difficulty of getting desired classes.

    I agree with you on Rollins. DD has not really been interested in what schools were added - the 12 non-reachy schools on the overlap are a small enough list we could conceivably visit them all, and then expand if they're unsuitable.
  • allyphoeallyphoe Registered User Posts: 2,294 Senior Member
    @NEPatsGirl Aww, thanks! DD says she's happy I have a hobby. :)

    Dickinson looks like it was another one that fell off purely for being not quite as awesome; the only negative it has is the low percentage of students of my kid's ethnicity.
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