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cheaper school VS. where you want to be

alinhappylandalinhappyland Registered User Posts: 121 Junior Member
I'm debating between three schools really (already accepted to all 3).

1st one: U of I....I got into honors, so that's a plus. Tuition's relatively cheap b/c I'm in state...I just don't think I could learn in the environment of a huge lecture hall. It's really not me. I've been to campus 7 times and I really like it, but I'm extremely uncomfortable with the size.

2nd one: Tulane...Got into honors program + huge scholarship, so the price of attending is the same as public-in-state university. However, I'm kinda reluctant to go to New Orleans because the campus isn't completely re-built yet, etc.

3rd one: Grinnell...Probably my dream school, but got a relatively small scholarship and would be twice the price of previous two. I've visited and I love it. My family isn't particularly "worried" about money, but I'd like to save money if I can. I keep on thinking "is it really worth it?..."

comments? please?
Post edited by alinhappyland on
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Replies to: cheaper school VS. where you want to be

  • weenieweenie Registered User Posts: 5,793 Senior Member
    Oh that's a tough one. I'd normally be chearleading for the cheapest school -- but these schools are all so different. Grinnell is likely to be a COMPLETELY different experience from U of I...and possibly a much better educational experience - especially if you already have cold feet on the huge school thing.
  • Worried StudentWorried Student Registered User Posts: 780 Member
    3rd one: Grinnell...Probably my dream school, but got a relatively small scholarship and would be twice the price of previous two. I've visited and I love it. My family isn't particularly "worried" about money, but I'd like to save money if I can. I keep on thinking "is it really worth it?..."
    I am probably going to end up in the same situation. I talked about my concerns about the extra costs with my family. I can afford it, but like you, I'd also like to save money. My mom told me that it's worth the extra money if I think I'd be happy there. I'd saw go to Grinnell. You only go to college once and it sounds like you think Grinnell is the best fit for you.

    By the way, Tulane is also an excellent school, but I can understand your concerns about New Orleans.
  • ferrisbuellerferrisbueller Registered User Posts: 448 Member
    U of I and Grinnell are both infinitely cooler than Tulane in my super biased opinion. (Grinnell was one of my top choices, both parents went to U of I). Iowa City is so cool, and Grinnell is such an amazing community that I prefer those to Tulane, but it's hard to choose against the honors program at an instate price. I don't think you can go wrong here. (If you are by chance looking to major in English, you have to go to U of I or Grinnell. Just saying.)
  • dudedaddudedad Registered User Posts: 1,930 Senior Member
    Very disparate choices, rural vs urban, small vs large. Visit all three and go with your gut, which now seems to say Grinnell.
  • AlexandreAlexandre Super Moderator Posts: 24,084 Super Moderator
    If your folks can handle it, pick a school based on fit. Grinnell and Iowa are both good schools, but they are worlds apart.
  • MattEisnMattEisn Registered User Posts: 408 Member
    I would strike U of I (is this Indiana or Iowa by the way?)

    I would seriously look at Tulane, take another visit and assess the damage. If all of your worries arent immediately resolved, go to Grinnell
  • alinhappylandalinhappyland Registered User Posts: 121 Junior Member
    To clarify, U of I = Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Sorry for the confusion. (I'm from northern IL)

    Thanks everyone for the responses. I'm definitely visiting Tulane (accepted student weekend). Good luck to everyone in class of 2011 for college decisions.
  • AlexandreAlexandre Super Moderator Posts: 24,084 Super Moderator
    I though Illinois was UIUC. At any rate, UIUC and Grinnell are both great, but again, completely different.
  • eugeniaeugenia Registered User Posts: 229 Junior Member
    pick what you want. if you work hard, depending on the school, you can get a scholarship your sophomore year.

    if your parents can pay for it, go for it. i mean, you'll be there for the next 4 years of your life, you might as well love it.
  • OneMomOneMom Registered User Posts: 1,925 Senior Member
    I would pick Tulane, but I am a risk taker. Your concern about UIUC being too big is valid, can't argue with that. Tulane will give you the private education with smaller class size at half the cost of Grinnell. Why not try it? To me, the reconstruction is just a detail. If you hate it, transfer.
  • BomberBomber Registered User Posts: 62 Junior Member
    Usually honors programs offer the advantage of smaller classes, more intimate contact with professors, honors dorms, opportunities only available to you. Is this the case where you are already admitted? Have you checked it out? Talked to other honors kids? It could really make a huge school feel much more intimate.
  • redknightredknight Registered User Posts: 461 Member
    Is smothering post-collegiate debt worth it? It's a choice you have to make.
  • astrophysicsmomastrophysicsmom Registered User Posts: 4,326 Senior Member
    Take a look at this thread and all its posts. The responses run the full spectrum (no consensus answer, sorry).

    http://talk.collegeconfidential.com/showthread.php?t=292650

    btw, I grew up in Central Illinois and Illinois was always referred to there as the U of I. It was only since seeing it here on CC that I saw people referring to it at UIUC!!!!
  • helpingmomhelpingmom Registered User Posts: 233 Junior Member
    Yes, I never heard Illinois being referred to as UIUC until here on CC - and I'm an alum!! In Illinois everyone call it U of I -- but I can understand the confusion.
  • alinhappylandalinhappyland Registered User Posts: 121 Junior Member
    astrophysicsmom - thanks for the thread, but I feel that my situation is more "Is a good-fit college worth 80k more than hugeStateU?" (tulane's somewhere in the middle...). I'm not so worried about prestige.
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