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Colleges that change lives list

SherieAmourSherieAmour 21 replies2 threads Junior Member
My daughter is about to go look at Eckerd which is on the “Colleges that Change Lives” list. Because we are going to Florida, we are also looking at Rollins, FSU, University of Tampa and maybe maybe The New School, all as a source of comparison. Anyone have any opinions on Eckerd compared to the other schools we’ll be looking at? Any pros and cons? The vibe at Eckerd based on videos I’ve seen, looks right up her alley. She’s really not preppy. She’s more Bohemian. I’m just a little concerned by how small Eckerd is and the high girl to boy ratio. She went to a smaller high school where the option to meet guys was limited considering there were very few and they had been going to school together since kindergarten. She definitely wants to meet new guys and have the option of dating. If anyone has any suggests of colleges with a similar vibe to Eckerd, but maybe a little bigger with a more even boy to girl ratio. I have been looking on that list but am not sure if any of those schools listed are similar or unique in their own way. Any advice is appreciated. Thanks.
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Replies to: Colleges that change lives list

  • pishicacapishicaca 434 replies17 threads Member
    You may want to look in the Eckerd forum:

    https://talk.collegeconfidential.com/eckerd-college/

    @ECmotherx2 and @Creekland are also good Eckerd resources, having had children attend.

    With regard to vibe, Eckerd and The New College definitely lean Bohemian, while the rest on your FL visit list are probably closer to preppy or pre-professional (Tampa).
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  • LindagafLindagaf 11457 replies608 threads Super Moderator
    So you are the mother?

    You seem unusually concerned about dating. Dating happens at Eckerd. This is not a thing to worry about. And remember, the kids at Eckerd have chosen to be there. It’s not high school. My friend’s daughter loves Eckerd. She has never mentioned a dating problem.
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  • SherieAmourSherieAmour 21 replies2 threads Junior Member
    Good to know. I am the mother. I am only concerned because my daughter hasn’t had the opportunity to meet many boys outside of high school and often expresses to me how she’d like to have a boyfriend. She’s never been on a date before and isn’t into the get- drunk- hook up parties that are so common these days or into meeting people through social media. She’s volunteered and worked but hasn’t met very many people outside her very small school. I honestly feel lucky that she is a late bloomer in terms of relationships. The world seems a lot crazier then it was when I was growing up and it scares me. I would just like her to have options in college that she hasn’t had it high school to meet boys that could potentially become a best friend or if its in the cards more. With a school that is 60-70% girls, it does concern me. I appreciate the positive feedback about Eckerd.
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  • CreeklandCreekland 7334 replies95 threads Senior Member
    My youngest lad went to Eckerd, but he started thinking Marine Bio so never considered your other schools. I can tell you about Eckerd, but not compare them.

    To continue about him, he did not stay in Marine Bio (many don't), but switched to Bio, then Theater, and finally International Studies with a concentration on the Middle East. Like many at Eckerd, he did a study abroad, two if you count one during J Term. The J Term was to Greece studying Blue Zones and his semester long one was to Jordan associated with his major. He had three job offers before graduation (two using his Arabic), but opted to return home to our farm to do Permaculture Farming. He got married a year after graduation, but to a gal from CA he met on his Study Abroad. She went to Georgetown, not Eckerd. He had gal friends at Eckerd (plenty he introduced us to), but I don't recall him telling us he was dating any of them.

    Eckerd appealed to him because it was Green. Their Think Outside motto fits him perfectly. He longboarded to class, enjoyed paddle boarding, worked with their composting/gardening, and watched sunsets on the beach with the other students. Academically he enjoyed his professors and spent a bit of time with Aspec (their retired professionals community). He was also involved with a group that helped teach older generations how to use new technology - phones, laptops, and computers.

    There is a large drinking/MJ/party population at Eckerd, but my guy wasn't among them. I worried he wouldn't fit in, but he told me the students there are very tolerant. He was invited, but no one batted an eye when he politely declined. His freshman year he got put with a very bad match for a roommate and wanted to come home. We had him switch to living with a friend and all worked out well. FWIW, that roommate ended up living in a single. He did not room well with others (only child and didn't play well in close quarters).

    As a parent, the professors there seemed excellent and very willing to connect with students. The school looks after its students as one would expect with an LAC. The setting is gorgeous. H is sure he'd have failed out though - spending hours on their sailboats instead of studying!
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  • SherieAmourSherieAmour 21 replies2 threads Junior Member
    Wow! Sounds like a fabulous school. We can’t wait to visit. Thanks for the info:)
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  • CreeklandCreekland 7334 replies95 threads Senior Member
    We spent a couple of Februaries in St Pete camping at Ft Desoto (great campground if you're at all into camping - they only allow two weeks at a time though). During that time we got to eat on campus quite a few times and were very impressed with their food quality. The students, of course, complain about it. I think that's a rite of passage no matter where one goes to school! We asked one young lady what she didn't like about it and she told us she wanted some plain white bread for her sandwich (Wonder Bread). She was eating a sandwich on a deli-style roll. Ciabatta or similar. For our taste buds we're stymied to have received that response, but to each their own. When you visit, if you can, eat there and see what you think.

    We also met some professors, watched a theater production, went to a service for Elie Wiesel (he had been an Aspec member and taught a J-term course there prior to his death), and met some Aspec members - all via our guy. In general we want to snowbird soon and the Caribbean is top of our list, but St Pete is extremely tempting. The big "con" for us is we love scuba and snorkeling. The Caribbean has it. FL is only so-so from Miami on down.
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  • ECmotherx2ECmotherx2 2333 replies11 threads Senior Member
    @Creekland gave wonderful descriptions of Eckerd. My daughter and son both graduated from there and my daughter met her long time boyfriend the first week of autumn term. (She is graduating from vet school this year and her boyfriend is set to receive his PhD in cell and micro biology next month.) Eckerd vibe is one of a community spirit. You always see mixed group of students around campus. Very much a live and let live attitude, very supportive of one another. Rollins tends to be more preppy, New School is smaller, less structured, non graded classes with 72% female, FSU is larger, has an active Greek life, University of Tampa- approx. 1/3 of professors are full time, 50% of students are from Florida.
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  • SherieAmourSherieAmour 21 replies2 threads Junior Member
    Thanks so much for your feedback:)
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  • socaldad2002socaldad2002 2627 replies35 threads Senior Member
    I would also look at the student reviews on the Niche college website which gives you a really good flavor for the type of students and campus culture for undergrads.
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  • SherieAmourSherieAmour 21 replies2 threads Junior Member
    Ugh.....I’ve been totally obsessing. All I’ve been doing is looking at Niche. The comment section is really confusing because you’ll read all these nice reviews and then there will be 1-2 that completely freak you out. I wish we could go visit. My d says all the virtual tours start blending in and she really can’t get a proper vibe of the kids or the campus. Even if we were able to visit, I don’t think the kids, campus or town would be an accurate representation because of COVID. It’s really frustrating. I have been trying to come up with a list for her based on knowing her personality, ratings, reviews and location.
    Looking for:
    a college in an area that’s beautiful
    daughter has a 3.75 and works hard in school
    Not planning on submitting standardized testing because it’s become optional so many places
    Daughter not really into big SEC schools and doesn’t care about big football games
    She doesn’t like the thought of Greek system although would be open to it if it’s the only way to interact with other students, but would just prefer not to
    She is more of an artsy free sprit who loves music and art
    She wouldn’t fit in a very preppy or snobby school. Maybe more diverse, eclectic and Bohemian. Doesn’t like extreme outspoken liberal schools.
    She would prefer a school with equal or more boys
    We are a Jewish and I would prefer non secular vs going to a Catholic or Christian based college
    We are from New Orleans and Id like her to go OOS and experience something different.
    Prefer a place that isn’t difficult to travel to. I don’t want to fly 3-4 hours and the drive 2-3 hours to visit.
    I am looking to not spend more than 30K a year and am hoping to receive some sort of FA
    Somewhere not super cold
    Somewhere where kids are outside and doing stuff around the area either nature wise or exploring the city wise.....or ideally both.
    Prefer kids that try hard in school and aren’t huge drinking partiers
    Somewhere with sunshine
    Undecided major but leaning towards psychology, biology or creative writing/English.
    Probably too much to ask!

    So far this is the rough list that I have:

    Eckerd
    Elon
    Rollins
    Flagler
    Virginia Tech
    College of Charleston
    Loyola New Orleans (as a local back up plan)

    Maybe a Clemson, U of a Florida, U of Arizona, Allegheny, U of Pugent Sound, Purdue -those are ones recommended to me

    Would love to find some options to add in Colorado, California, Arizona .....



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  • SherieAmourSherieAmour 21 replies2 threads Junior Member
    Correction- my budget may be a lot lower because of the awful effects of COVID on my tourism based business and income this year. I’m not sure when things will get better. Hoping soon!
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  • EconPopEconPop 700 replies12 threads Member
    Ugh.....I’ve been totally obsessing. All I’ve been doing is looking at Niche. The comment section is really confusing because you’ll read all these nice reviews and then there will be 1-2 that completely freak you out. I wish we could go visit. My d says all the virtual tours start blending in and she really can’t get a proper vibe of the kids or the campus. Even if we were able to visit, I don’t think the kids, campus or town would be an accurate representation because of COVID. It’s really frustrating. I have been trying to come up with a list for her based on knowing her personality, ratings, reviews and location.
    Looking for:
    a college in an area that’s beautiful
    daughter has a 3.75 and works hard in school
    Not planning on submitting standardized testing because it’s become optional so many places
    Daughter not really into big SEC schools and doesn’t care about big football games
    She doesn’t like the thought of Greek system although would be open to it if it’s the only way to interact with other students, but would just prefer not to
    She is more of an artsy free sprit who loves music and art
    She wouldn’t fit in a very preppy or snobby school. Maybe more diverse, eclectic and Bohemian. Doesn’t like extreme outspoken liberal schools.
    She would prefer a school with equal or more boys
    We are a Jewish and I would prefer non secular vs going to a Catholic or Christian based college
    We are from New Orleans and Id like her to go OOS and experience something different.
    Prefer a place that isn’t difficult to travel to. I don’t want to fly 3-4 hours and the drive 2-3 hours to visit.
    I am looking to not spend more than 30K a year and am hoping to receive some sort of FA
    Somewhere not super cold
    Somewhere where kids are outside and doing stuff around the area either nature wise or exploring the city wise.....or ideally both.
    Prefer kids that try hard in school and aren’t huge drinking partiers
    Somewhere with sunshine
    Undecided major but leaning towards psychology, biology or creative writing/English.
    Probably too much to ask!

    So far this is the rough list that I have:

    Eckerd
    Elon
    Rollins
    Flagler
    Virginia Tech
    College of Charleston
    Loyola New Orleans (as a local back up plan)

    Maybe a Clemson, U of a Florida, U of Arizona, Allegheny, U of Pugent Sound, Purdue -those are ones recommended to me

    Would love to find some options to add in Colorado, California, Arizona .....


    I like the ones you've chosen so far. Here are a couple more for you to investigate. Keeping in mind your budget restrictions, it might help to apply to some public LACs to provide a couple of financial safeties to the mix.

    UNC Asheville - a small public LAC located in a picturesque city.

    St Mary's College (Md) - another small public LAC in a picturesue setting. This time, a waterfront campus along the Chesapeake Bay.

    Good luck.
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  • murray93murray93 312 replies29 threads Member
    edited September 27
    I was thinking Puget Sound all the way, until I saw sunshine as a requirement. Other than that, based on what you’ve said, I think she’d love it! She might also want to check out Southwestern University in Georgetown, TX which is just outside of Austin. Both of those schools give great merit aid.
    edited September 27
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  • Mwfan1921Mwfan1921 6105 replies97 threads Senior Member
    @SherieAmour

    Make sure your D knows the budget, $30K is likely going to be tough to meet at some of the schools on the list.

    I would also remove Puget Sound...hard/long travel from NO, and not sunny.

    Make sure she doesn't need a test score for merit at the schools on the list.

    You need an affordable safety...is that Loyola NO?

    I will add Truman State and U Tulsa. Check to see if Alabama, Ole Miss, and U New Mexico would be affordable with merit.

    Run the net price calculators at the schools under consideration.

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  • momofsenior1momofsenior1 11073 replies137 threads Senior Member
    You most likely won't get Purdue down to $30K as an OOS applicant.
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  • Eeyore123Eeyore123 2229 replies25 threads Senior Member
    Have you tried running a net price calculator at any school to see if you may qualify for need based financial aid? It sounds like you have a business, that is going to make the NPC’s less accurate. Getting to a sub $30k price point is going to be difficult on merit only. You are likely going to have to relax some of her requirements.
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  • TS0104TS0104 1528 replies31 threads Senior Member
    Hi! Regarding Niche, I use the student reviews like I do online reviews in general: If the same theme keeps popping up over and over in the majority (such as themes like too much partying/kids don't care about academics), I worry. If I read just a couple that seem off from everyone else, I disregard...figure that student did not find a school that fit well, or some kids have a harder time than the majority.

    College is such a different world I would think that as long as she doesn't go to a girls only school, she will find plenty of boys to have relationships with; I personally wouldn't worry too much about M/F ratio.

    I can speak to Elon for you, my S19 goes there and is very happy Great performing arts school, nationally known, so the performing arts scene is probably good but I don't know how it works for non majors. I do know acapella is big there and lots of talented kids. Its a beautiful campus and makes some top lists for that. Town is tiny. City 45 min away; within a couple hours are mountains or a beach. Football is there but not a big thing, Greek is a part of the social life but not huge (they only have small on campus greek houses for sophomores only). Yes there are partiers and there are plenty of non partiers. He has found his people who try hard in school (Note I was worried about party crowd/priority and tried to have a strong eye on this on our visits...again DS has found his people as an academically minded non partier and it was easy, and he's happy). Diverse: no. Preppy: yes, (large population of students from NY/NJ, which also adds a large Jewish contingent), but my son is not preppy and midwestern and found his people fine. Grades and merit aid look good, I think my son had a 3.7 and got decent merit. Note that Elon's sticker price is lower to its peers and the aid is proportionally lower. Son is a psych major and likes his psych and anthro classes a lot so far. Send me a PM if you want more info...and I think they are doing in person tours, at least they were even back in May.

    My D17 attends LMU in LA and it checks all of those boxes except price. It's pricey even with merit. It is Jesuit, but we have visited lots of Jesuit schools and find them very accepting of all faiths and no religious pressure, although there will be religious presence (Christmas trees for example). I mention this because many Jesuit schools will fit your D's GPA and non-Greek preferences, and are in the sweet spot of mid sized schools.

    Wondering about Rhodes (TN) for your D. It fit my son's GPA and seemed to have a lot to offer, but by the time it came on the list he had enough options that he didn't want to visit. Oh and a friend goes to University of Utah and spends TONS of time outdoors. My high schooler son is interested in CO but we haven't found a great fit anywhere there so far (something in between high academics/price and party school).
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  • SherieAmourSherieAmour 21 replies2 threads Junior Member
    Rhodes is also on the “Colleges that change lives” list. I will check it out. Thanks! Does your d love California?
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  • lookingforwardlookingforward 35946 replies404 threads Senior Member
    My godson loved Rhodes, very involved with music on campus. Bff and I drove through while on a road trip. Nice, compact campus in an interesting area. His experience with Greek life seems to have been low key.

    He got some nice FA, but policies were slightly different, at the time. You do want to run those NPCs.
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  • CollegeMamb0CollegeMamb0 178 replies1 threads Junior Member
    Utah, Colorado State (v good honors prog apparently) for outdoorsy plus merit

    Alabama has the Blount Liberal Arts program, a residential living/ learning community that might make the SEC thing more palatable. Auto merit might get you to $30k

    Are you eligible for need based aid? Or only looking for merit awards? I missed that if mentioned above.
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