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Update! Help in college selection process

jerome38747jerome38747 9 replies5 threads New Member
Hello All,

Since I have last posted on here, there have been some changes to my situation. (For reference, I am planning on majoring in business analytics and eventually planning on becoming an actuary or someone in the field of data analytics.) Please refer to my previous posts to get some background on me.

- I have removed Elon from my options, it is too far from home and a bit too overpriced.

- ASU Barrett offer still stands at the lowest price at around 20k. I am just hesitant to choose this option because A) I have always wanted to go out of state, and B) It seems like employers could care less about the honors curriculum i.e. it won't be worth the struggle. I'm also worried about the sheer size of the school and some large class sizes.

- U of Denver- Accepted into Pioneer Leadership program. Dropped price to about 33k a year. Good business school. Not a very spirited and involved student body from what I hear.

- U of San Diego- Dropped price to the same as university of Denver. Amazing location. (Preferable to Denver) Also a good business school. Good study abroad program. They do not have a business analytics major, only a minor.

The bottom line is I can reasonably afford every school on this list.

If anyone can give their opinions or what they know about a certain school I would appreciate it. Hopefully this will be my last post and I will decide by tomorrow. Anything helps. Thank you all so much.
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Replies to: Update! Help in college selection process

  • sbdad12sbdad12 278 replies13 threads Junior Member
    Personally, for me, it would be down to ASU Barrett and USD. I liked the USD campus as it's beautiful, but the school appears very very small. It's a regional school, and not a lot of people outside of SoCal know about it. I would pick USD over ASU without Barrett, but Barrett over USD.

    But as said before, I think ASU Barrett is very special. My daughter is attending in the fall (hopefully it's open), in WP Carey, and she picked it over Michigan, Wisconsin, SDSU Honors, CalPoly SLO, UCSB and UCSD, all of which are great schools. The amount of attention you get (3 advisors), the smaller class sizes with the signature classes, the school spirit, quality of the dorms and campus food are all really good. Barrett students appear to get into top grad schools and recruiters from great companies hire from there. And this is all before considering WP Carey. WP Carey > USD business school. Not even close in the rankings.

    The caliber of the student at ASU Barrett is going to be higher than the other schools you mention. I believe in the last detailed year, 2017-18, there were 151 National Merit Scholars at ASU, nearly all in Barrett, vs 1 at Univ of Denver and none that I see at USD. You also have nearly the same number of National Hispanic Recognition Program winners. And lots of Fulbright and Goldwater scholars. Both USD and Univ of Denver has about the same number of students as Barrett Tempe, and yet they don't produce the same number of top scholars as Barrett. You're going to be surrounded by top students and top professors.

    If your distaste for staying in AZ outweighs all else, then pick USD. If you can deal with it, go to Barrett, and use the extra money to travel every month somewhere new and you will still come out $5K/year ahead.
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  • aquaptaquapt 2438 replies51 threads Senior Member
    edited May 29
    Congrats on the good appeal results!

    You already know that Barrett is the best deal financially; but you have a strong preference for a private U out of state, which is fair enough if you can manage it.

    One thing that would trouble me in your situation is the question of how your need-based aid will hold up in future years. Right now these schools are bidding for your commitment - especially this year when private colleges are particularly hurting. Once you commit, you drive your bargaining power off the lot.

    One way to assess whether schools tend to maintain the same level of generosity after the first year is to look at the CollegeData financial pages. Here's what I found about USD and DU:

    U of San Diego:
    Average percentage need met for first-year students: 77%
    Average percentage need met for all undergraduates: 71%
    Calculated (by me) percentage need met for non-freshmen: 69%

    U of Denver:
    Average percentage need met for first-year students: 88%
    Average percentage need met for all undergraduates: 86%
    Calculated (by me) percentage need met for non-freshmen: 85.3%

    This means, on average, a 10% drop in percentage-need-met after the first year for USD students on need-based aid.... vs. a 3% drop at Denver.

    Of course there are no guarantees in any individual case, but on average, Denver seems to show a stronger commitment to keeping up the same level of aid (or close to it) for continuing students. (Plus they're more generous overall.) You're particularly at risk for a drop in aid if they've extended a "loss leader" in response to your appeal. It's something to think about.

    I also think that Denver has a stronger business school generally, and obviously a stronger business analytics program... plus considerably more strength in the GIS field. And the Pioneer Leadership cohort is a great opportunity and I think by definition a spirited and high-initiative group.

    And Denver is a great city; it's not like you'd be going to some desolate backwater.

    But, all that said, I know USD kind of has your heart, and what you do with the opportunities once there will matter more than anything else, so follow your heart as long as you can do it with your eyes open.
    edited May 29
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  • austinmshauriaustinmshauri 9880 replies380 threads Senior Member
    I received merit scholarships to USD, Elon, and University of Denver, and even then, these schools are going to be a stretch financially.

    I always wanted to go out of state for college, but this does not seem like a viable option anymore. So much for applying to all of these schools that I won't be able to attend without being 80k in debt.

    You posted the above a few days ago. How much debt will you have from each of these schools?
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  • suteiki77suteiki77 1232 replies3 threads Senior Member
    USD is a great location. How about their Data Science department? Are you thinking of grad school?

    I don't know this to be true but I heard that the actual job of being an actuary will be replaced by computer programs in about 10 years. I think statistics and data science might offer a lot more job opportunities but I"m not certain of this.

    Nice having affordable choices. I don't know what is the best option for you. I don't think you have any bad choices, though. Congrats!
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  • aquaptaquapt 2438 replies51 threads Senior Member
    (OTOH, if you aid is all merit and it's guaranteed for all four years, then disregard my need-based aid calculation!)
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