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Colleges for the Jewish "B" student

rockvillemomrockvillemom 6941 replies183 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
edited January 2014 in Parents Forum
I have been debating for a time about starting a thread such as this. On one hand, I want to make sure I have considered every college this should be on my son's list. On the other hand, every time this topic comes up there a lot of posters who criticize the need for such a thread. So, I make this request - if you are interested in this topic - have good ideas - please contribute. If you feel this type of thread is not necessary - then I guess there is no reason for you to post on it, right? (Said gently!)

So, for my "B" student - considering Elon, College of Charleston, James Madison and Muhlenberg. All have a reasonable number of Jewish students and an active Hillel.

Ithaca has been suggested - not sure that he wants to head that far north - but it is a maybe. Drew is another possibility - but it might be too small.

I also like things I have heard about Gettysburg and Susquehanna in general - but not as sure about the Jewish piece. These schools have Hillels, but their reported Jewish populations are under 100 students.

Considering Salisbury as our in-state super safety school - but have no data on number of Jewish students.

So, I'd love feedback from parents and students who are familiar with Jewish life and the Hillels at these schools. If I have overlooked some - please fill me in. We are trying to stay in the mid-Atlantic region and trying to aim for colleges larger than 2000 students and below 15,000. He might be a business/management/marketing major - but that is certainly not definite.
edited January 2014
19248 replies
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Replies to: Colleges for the Jewish "B" student

  • srco14srco14 99 replies0 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    I would definitely add Clark and Goucher to your list. Both might seem a little smaller than what you've initially identified but they are both very special schools. Clark has the smaller Jewish population but has an active Hillel
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  • SlitheyToveSlitheyTove 6187 replies161 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Sizes might not be right, but possibly Goucher and Pitt.

    When we visited Muhlenberg, D1 loved their Hillel. Don't know much about the others you've listed.

    Is FA/merit aid a consideration? How "B" is his GPA: is that weighted or unweighted?
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  • rockvillemomrockvillemom 6941 replies183 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Yes - FA will be a consideration for any of the pricier schools - such as Gettysburg. Right now, finishing up 10th grade with a 3.5 UW and about 3.9 W. Many honors classes - trying first AP next year. Hoping he will get 28-29 on the ACT. Active in BBYO - but not a lot of ECs - no hook or other extraordinary achievements. Just a nice average kid!
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  • rap_momrap_mom 51 replies4 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    Check out Guilford College. although it's outside of your target area. Seems like a super school for B students, one of the "Colleges that Change Lives." My nephew (a Rabbi's son) goes there. Seems to have a pretty active Hillel and he feels very comfortable. Of course, I don't have any direct observation.
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  • 2boysima2boysima 1737 replies57 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    I know a number of Jewish students from Long Island at Towson. Could this be an in-state safety, also? Looked at their Fall 2009 and Spring 2010 calendar...seemed to be an event almost every week....and a Shabbat event at least once a month.
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  • rockvillemomrockvillemom 6941 replies183 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    I think Towson is an interesting example of negative in-state bias - I have kind of a negative perception of it - but it is not really fact-based - you make a good point - if Salisbury is on the list - I should think about Towson as well.
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  • green678green678 608 replies10 threadsRegistered User Member
    I have heard that Franklin & Marshall is a good one too.
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  • CountingDownCountingDown 13438 replies110 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    I'll put out URochester, if he's willing to head north, and add another vote for Clark and Elon. I take it your S doesn't want to be some place as large as UMD. Would he look at UMBC?

    A couple kids from our shul are very happy at Pitt.
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  • jym626jym626 55544 replies2895 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Have you seen this from the Reform Judaism magazine? http://reformjudaismmag.org/_kd/Items/actions.cfm?action=Show&item_id=1518&destination=ShowItem
    Be sure to scroll all the way over to the right for a list of the top 20 by percent. I wasn't familiar with Lesley University.
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  • monydadmonydad 7832 replies158 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    This might be helpful to you:
    Hillel's Guide to Jewish Life on Campus
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  • wjbwjb 2843 replies65 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Some possibilities: American U, Goucher, George Washington U, Lehigh, U of Pittsburgh, Franklin & Marshall, Syracuse, Boston U, Clark.
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  • JHSJHS 18410 replies72 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    1. 3.5uw/3.9w at the end of 10th grade, especially for a boy, isn't what this particular Jew would describe as a "B student". Of course, you know your kid and his school, and I don't.

    2. More votes here for Pitt (especially its honors program), and Franklin & Marshall. Also, the other "hot" second-tier LAC in Southeastern Pennsylvania these days seems to be Ursinus. The Jewish kids I know there all seemed to be happy last I heard, although I know zip about Hillel there (and quite possibly neither did they). Ithaca, too. Rochester, absolutely, especially if he is a very academic sort of B student.

    3. Heading south, I know that Jewish kids have gone from here to Elon, but I don't know how they liked it, and they were closer to 2.5 than 3.5 students. I would think about Tulane and Emory (the latter being something of a reach). I have fairly observant relatives who moved to South Carolina a few years ago. Their B-student youngest child applied to College of Charleston, but ultimately decided she would rather not go to college than go there -- I'm not sure why. (Rochester took her off the waiting list, so her resolve was never tested. She really liked Rochester.)
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  • PRJPRJ 1828 replies49 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    I second (third? fourth?) the suggestion of Clark. We were prepared not to like it given its location in Worcester MA, but D and I both loved it. D was amused by the "Hookah in the Sukkah" posters we saw on our October visit ;) Also, hands down the best food we ate on any college campus.
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  • rockvillemomrockvillemom 6941 replies183 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    JHS - not sure I followed your comment - he gets mostly "B"s - so I refer to him as a "B" student. I'm looking for colleges that are not ultra-competitive - but still considered decent schools.

    Tulane has been a thought - just concerned about the distance. Pitt really seems to be up and coming - I hear so much about it lately. Thanks for all of the suggestions.

    Any comments on Jewish life at Susquehanna or Gettysburg?
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  • barronsbarrons 23047 replies1953 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    I guess I don't see Rochester, Tulane, or Emory as place where B students have much shot today. I think you are looking a tier lower at American and the like. Indiana seems to be hot for those who used to look at Wisconsin.
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  • jym626jym626 55544 replies2895 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    U MD Baltimore County is a good option. As is U Delaware, though Delaware might be too big? Assume you've considered these, as they are in your back door, yes?
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  • roshkeroshke 3089 replies36 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    It really depends on the school and the rigor of the classes taken- Montgomery County, MD has some extremely competitive school districts where a weighted 3.9 would not put one out of the running at ANY of the schools mentioned (even Brandeis, if a boy and ED).

    I'd add Syracuse and Union to the list. Delaware has an undergrad population just slightly over your range and has a very pretty campus and the feel of a private school. Drexel and Northeastern (for their business coops). BU and GW (for business).

    Arizona is another hot place for those who used to look at Wisconsin.

    I happen to know a Jewish kid who is not too happy at all at Susquehanna, but that is just anecdotal.
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  • fendrockfendrock 2901 replies292 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Maybe Boston University?
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  • SlitheyToveSlitheyTove 6187 replies161 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    "B" student encompasses a lot of territory, and a "B" student with a 3.5 UW/3.9 W does have a shot at Rochester and Tulane. Given the OP's son's ACT scores, possibly more Tulane than Rochester, and I get the impression that Tulane may be more generous with merit money. Emory is reachier (as JHS says), but a lot will depend on how similar students at the OP's son's school do in admissions.

    Would going west be of interest? Lots of Jewish kids from the west coast at U of Arizona and ASU. But these are larger schools than desired. (and I just looked at roshke's post which makes the same point).
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  • rockvillemomrockvillemom 6941 replies183 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Interesting comment about MoCo - that's the kind of thing I really don't know about - having been in this area for so long - I know it is very competitive as far as students applying to college - but how a 3.9W GPA from a MoCo hs is looked at by admissions counselors - that I don't know.

    Delaware is interesting - we visited 2 years ago with S1 and were not blown away. But I keep hearing great things about it and maybe need to give it a second look.

    barrons - I agree with you - to me - it is not just getting in - but being successful and happy. Nothing could be worse than having your kid get into a school like Emory or Tulane and then either flunk out or just be so miserable that he wants to transfer. Fit is very important to me - more so than "prestige".
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