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Smith vs. UCONN vs. U of Maryland vs. U of Colorado

EastCoastWannabeEastCoastWannabe Registered User Posts: 9 New Member
edited April 2007 in Smith College
I just don't know which one to choose!

Smith has a lot of things but I don't know if I want to be in a small school because I love the big schools with the football team, lots of people, and a huge variety but I also want to go to a prestigious school because I woked hard in high school and I don't think the last three will pay off
Post edited by EastCoastWannabe on
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Replies to: Smith vs. UCONN vs. U of Maryland vs. U of Colorado

  • Redenbacher'sRedenbacher's Registered User Posts: 163 Junior Member
    Go to Smith if you want a challenging and intellectual 4 years. Sure, you'll get it at UConn, Maryland and Colorado but the atmosphere in Smith is different and unique. True, it's small and doesn't have the "football team" but you'll still have a lot of school spirit. You'll feel it when you join one of the houses because they have rivalries between houses. It's hard to not love Smith. You have the best faculty members to help you, great friends to meet who will share your interest, AND great housing. I think the Smith reputation beats out the other three because you are free to express yourself and take the courses you want. I believe Smith has no distribution requirements.
  • joecollegeboyjoecollegeboy Registered User Posts: 6 New Member
    Relax, EastCoastWannabe, think it out - be smart about it -wait until you have visited all of the schools and then you can decide. Make a choice and go with it -you'll do the right thing!
  • TheDadTheDad Registered User, ! Posts: 10,225 Senior Member
    Smith has everything but the football team. What are you going to college *for*?

    Imnsvho, going to a school for "prestige" is as bad an answer as going to a school for its "football team."

    It's hard to find the right answers until you find the right questions.
  • MomwaitingfornewMomwaitingfornew Registered User Posts: 5,821 Senior Member
    Those schools are all so different . . . Take Joecollegeboy's advice, and visit before you make a final decision. On paper, one of those colleges might look perfect, but not always in person. The "feel" of the campus and its students will probably be the deciding factor -- as long as the academics fit your interests as well.
  • BeaBea Registered User Posts: 63 Junior Member
    do you know what area you want to study yet?
  • nycnyc Registered User Posts: 1,355 Senior Member
    Nothing wrong with a second visit to each school, but I'm surprised that you haven't decided whether you'd rather attend a LAC (Smith) or a large uni (the other 3 schools) or whether you prefer coed to women's college.
  • SmithieandProudSmithieandProud Registered User Posts: 3,038 Senior Member
    ECW, I am continually struck by the fact that Smith seems to offer few of the things that you are looking for in a college and has little in common with other schools you are considering. Maybe you should think seriously about whether a women's LAC is what you want. Your happiness is more important than any kind of school prestige and if you come to Smith for the name and hate the atmosphere, it will be a lot of time and money wasted.
  • TheDadTheDad Registered User, ! Posts: 10,225 Senior Member
    Amen. (10 char.)
  • ieparentieparent Registered User Posts: 3 New Member
    My d was admitted to both and she is leaning towards Smith. I am very happy about that. I do wonder, however about McGill. It is a much larger research univ. in a big city and it is less $$-those are some of the pros
    but.... we recently returned from an overnight at Smith and it couldn't have gone better. They are so personable and I saw the campus and town for the first time and loved it. I am concerned about the all-girl campus-that being a huge strength but perhaps has a downside and also that the campus seems extremely liberal. I do appreciate reading recent concerns and comments. Any thoughts....
  • borginborgin Registered User Posts: 616 Member
    Smith is pretty liberal, but the Republican club is also very active. For the most part, students of different political leanings get along.

    As a student, I've never felt that the all-women campus is a downside. I do see men around campus (I will admit that most are here for class or because they are dating a Smithie, but I didn't go to college to find a boyfriend) and there are lots of oppurtunities to go off-campus for a "coed" experience (such as by taking class off campus - I took a class at UMass and may take one at Amherst in the fall or participating in an org at another college). It's not necessarily easy to do the Five College thing, but if it's important to you, you'll make it work. Having all women doesn't make the students cliqueish or catty (there isn't a "Mean Girls" dynamic going on) and students tend to support each other.
  • afruff23afruff23 Registered User Posts: 1,966 Senior Member
    McGill seems prestigious to me. I know somebody who turned down MIT for it. It's the best Canadian university.
  • TheDadTheDad Registered User, ! Posts: 10,225 Senior Member
    I'd say that there's no danger of not getting your minimum daily dose of political correctness at Smith but, as Borgin points out, the Republicans are vocal and there are many other flavors of socio-political thought as well.
  • arianneagarianneag Registered User Posts: 104 Junior Member
    Choosing a school due to prestige is a funny thing. People may say, "oh, prestige is not important," but people almost always take it into consideration anyway. I think that some schools are certainly more prestigious than others -- there's just no comparison. I don't think there's anything wrong with admitting this and making it a factor. Frankly, I think this is how people, instinctively, narrow down their application list to start out with. In other cases, the difference in prestige is so amazingly slight that it should NOT be a factor at all. I mean, there are parents who will discourage their children from attending Cornell or Dartmouth because they are "lesser" ivies compared to HYP, prestige wise. C'mon, parents!

    For instance, I would consider McGill and Smith to be on a similar "prestige" level. They're so amazingly different schools in other ways that any "prestige" difference looks insignificant, if it exists at all.

    As for UCONN, UMaryland, and UColorado --- honestly, I think that Smith is far more prestigious than these schools, at least out of state. However, what's important in this example is that with Smith's "prestige" comes an intellectual and academic atmosphere that most certainly exceeds that of the three other schools. This is certainly a factor to take into consideration. However, if you're unhappy at your school, you're probably not going to be very motivated to take advantage of these academics. Students can fail at the most prestigious schools due to unhappiness [remember the stories about suicides at Cornell and MIT]. I agree with other posters that you certainly must make a decision about a coed university vs. a women's LAC. Really, if football is important to you, so be it. However, there are other ways to experience school spirit. As for the "huge variety" of students, Smith seems like it has a "huge variety" compared to some other LACs I've seen, but I'm sure it doesn't compare to a large university. Another thing is that Smith has very high living standards (by that I mean dorms, especially, and probably other things like food), I'm sure better than the other three. This may or may not be made up for by a higher cost (I don't know about your circumstances with financial aid and out-of-state/in-state tuition --- remember that out of state publics can end up costing just as much as top-tier privates), which is also something to think about. I hope you visited and/or are planning to visit, and make sure you explore all the areas to live on campus [esp. if you're doing an overnight].

    As for the "liberalism" at Smith point: my high school is overwhelmingly liberal [it's the bay area]. However, only a small percentage of the student body cares and/or knows a lot about politics. Of the few percent who know/care/are vocal, the students are much more divided between liberal and conservative. Is Smith comparable to that? I absolutely adore the gay-friendliness of Smith [and obviously the promotion of opportunities for women unparalleled at other schools], but I do worry about a "group think" type of phenomenon [I've heard people from Bryn Mawr, which is still a very liberal school, say that even they were turned off from Smith for this reason].
  • TheDadTheDad Registered User, ! Posts: 10,225 Senior Member
    I think a strong sense of self and boundaries are the best defense against "group think," wherever it may be encountered.
  • Omniscient1Omniscient1 - Posts: 483 Member
    Smith? more known that UConn....what planet are you people from?
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