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Catholic School Rankings Revisited

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Replies to: Catholic School Rankings Revisited

  • MizzBeeMizzBee 4518 replies60 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    I would throw St Mary's (South Bend) as a great school as well, for those willing to consider single-sex education.
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  • Mary13Mary13 3997 replies83 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    sally305 wrote:
    We are not Catholic but our daughter might be looking at a few Catholic schools. If anyone has opinions on Depaul, St. Thomas (MN) or St. Benedict, we would appreciate them. Especially how they are for science and the arts, and how liberal/tolerant the campus culture is.

    sally305, my daughter just finished her freshman year at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul. She loves it. She had terrific classes her first year, with wonderful professors. The school is a mix of liberal and conservative. (During the time of the Minnesota vote on gay marriage, you would see “Vote Yes” signs flying from some dorm windows and “Vote No” from others.) Both sides are very tolerant of each other – I think the students enjoy the lively discussions that come from having friends with different perspectives.

    In our experience, St. Thomas excels in the areas of Business, Communication and Journalism, English, and Justice and Peace Studies. It embraces its Catholic tradition and theology courses are required for all students. It is not the place for anyone interested in majors such as studio art or theatre (which don’t exist there).

    There has been a slow but steady move toward more liberal thinking in the past few years. After over 120 years of Catholic priests as presidents, UST now has a lay woman president, Dr. Julie Sullivan, who is a strong supporter of Catholic social teaching. If your daughter is considering St. Thomas, she should visit the campus. I think she’ll know quickly whether or not it’s a good fit. And even if it’s not a good fit, you won’t have wasted your time because both the campus and the Twin Cities are beautiful places to visit!
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  • familykCTfamilykCT 151 replies3 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    Also, St. Joe's in Philadelphia is a really nice school as well. It has come way up in the rankings in the last several years.
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  • sally305sally305 7475 replies129 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Mary, thank you so much for the great information! I am glad your daughter is enjoying St. Thomas. My son visited and thought the campus was beautiful but didn't think it would be the right fit for him. From what you describe it might be perfect for my daughter. If only it were in a warmer climate...

    Speaking of, does anyone know anything about St. Edward's in Austin, TX?
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  • scout59scout59 3502 replies67 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Sally, I know nothing about St. Edward's in Texas, but my D graduated from the College of Commerce at DePaul. (She also considered Loyola Chicago.) She was interested in an urban campus in a large city with a strong business program, and DePaul fully lived up to her/our expectations. She enjoyed good relationships with her professors, both in and out of the business school, and she loved Chicago.

    Here's what she liked about the school: small class size (which is strange, considering how big the school is!), the location, the friendships she made with both students and teachers, the school's reputation in the local business community, and the strength of the DePaul alumni network. She found DePaul to be pretty liberal-leaning (and pretty live-and-let-live, too); for example, they are the first Catholic university to offer a LGBTQ Studies minor.

    It's not the right school for everybody - it IS pretty urban (not a lot of leafy campuses and ivy-covered walls). It's also not a big sorority/fraternity school and it's not big into sports, as a generalization. D loved it, though, and she's now working and living in Chicago.
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  • sally305sally305 7475 replies129 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Thank you, scout! I will pass your information on to my daughter as well.
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  • dbwesdbwes 1561 replies99 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Both my daughters had wonderful experiences at Marquette.
    Most impressed with their relationships with faculty. Older daughter changed majors, but not only was she still able to graduate in four years due to good advising, she was also led to an internship which clarified her plans for grad school where she is now thriving.
    Younger daughter has taken advantage of an opportunity to begin her own graduate work in a highly competitive field during her senior year next year at Marquette.
    You have to love cities and not mind a little urban grit. The majority of students probably lean conservative, but there seems to be room for those who think a little differently. My daughters thought it was a perfect size (8,000 kids) and a great atmosphere.
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  • giterdonegiterdone 1398 replies12 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    ...and she's now working and living in Chicago.

    one of the more poignant statements and missed outcomes of a college decision.

    We heard very early in DD's search to; "go to school where you want to work and live." Each school has its "pipeline" and regional footprint. Of course there are exceptions - but they are just that. Exceptions. When including this information? DD dropped a handful of contenders from her short list.

    She LOVES University of St. Thomas, St. Paul. Great atmosphere. Good athletic spirit, urban defined campus with great off campus entertainment options (Twin Cities) and very good Grad School.
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  • sally305sally305 7475 replies129 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    giterdone, you make a good point. And it's especially relevant for students considering colleges with strong regional reputations but not much of a national "brand." Having said that, I think it is too much to ask a 17-year-old to plan out where he or she wants to live after college--so much can change. It's hard enough to get them to think about what colleges might appeal to them (or at least this has been my experience).
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  • Mary13Mary13 3997 replies83 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Although I understand how giterdone's scenario could happen, that has not been the case with us. Our three oldest graduated from schools in Minnesota, Iowa and Wisconsin. Two have full-time career track jobs in Chicago near dear old Mom and Dad, and the third is aiming to land here as well after grad school. I hope our St. Thomas daughter follows suit. I suspect she will because everybody knows Chicago is the best city in the country. ;) And she can do her laundry for free at my house. :)
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  • giterdonegiterdone 1398 replies12 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Sorry - I kind of jerked this thread off its rails.

    to get back on track, and something I know Mary13 and I will agree on; University of St. Thomas, St. Paul is the #1 Catholic School (D3) :D
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  • scout59scout59 3502 replies67 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    I think it is too much to ask a 17-year-old to plan out where he or she wants to live after college--so much can change. It's hard enough to get them to think about what colleges might appeal to them

    It is a lot to ask of some teenagers - but then are teens like my D, who based much of her college search on large urban campuses in cities where she wanted to live post-graduation. It's not a strategy for everyone, but for her, those kind of considerations were very important.

    So in her case, giterdone's comments are very relevant. YMMV.
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  • ManofLaManchaManofLaMancha 3 replies0 threadsRegistered User New Member
    I saw this thread about a week ago and took note because my son is interested in Jesuit schools, as he is currently at a Jesuit high school. I was at the school yesterday speaking to a few of the Jesuit faculty. So I asked them which they thought was the best Jesuit college. All of them agreed (and also said that this view is widely held among Jesuits in the US) that Fordham is the best.

    They cited that the majority of the best Jesuit scholars teach at Fordham; that Fordham otherwise has the deepest faculty; and (most importantly) that Fordham is still rigorous in the true Jesuit sense that a student must still work hard to earn a good grade. They specifically criticized Georgetown for having become far to lenient in grading, and told me that some years ago that a faculty study at Georgetown showed that 46% of the grades at Georgetown were either A or A-.

    Their second choice was Holy Cross, and said it was still rigorous and a great choice if my son wanted a smaller school or didn't like New York City. They said the faculty at Holy Cross was not as deep as at Fordham, but it was still very solid.

    I'm not sure if any of this will matter, since he seems to prefer Georgetown among the Jesuit schools. But it seemed worth sharing anyway.
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  • emeraldkity4emeraldkity4 34785 replies1076 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Does the faculty @ Fordham whose degrees are from Georgetown agree that Fordham is academically superior?
    ;)
    Im sure both are great schools & it is up to the individual student which they prefer.
    However criteria that families often consider when comparing schools, such as SAT scores, faculty:student ratio & selective admittance rate, all are in favor of Georgetown.
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  • ManofLaManchaManofLaMancha 3 replies0 threadsRegistered User New Member
    Yes, true, Georgetown is more selective, which is why these comments surprised me and why I shared them here.
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  • yauponyaupon 570 replies12 threadsRegistered User Member
    St. Edward's has a good theatre program. The kids we know there are the ones who initially went farther afield, floundered, & came home for a smaller & more supportive environment.
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  • JuniorMintJuniorMint 1465 replies26 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Thanks for the insight ManofLaMancha.

    I actually was admitted to Fordham, Georgetown, and Boston College with some tempting offers, but I don't really see the grade inflation at Gtown as a detracting factor. ;)
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  • ManofLaManchaManofLaMancha 3 replies0 threadsRegistered User New Member
    Funny, JuniorMint, my son says he knows about grade inflation at G-Town, and he considers that a plus too. :)
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  • glidoglido 5977 replies25 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Georgetown is more selective for students, the Jesuits were commenting on the respective schools' faculty providing undergraduate instruction. Those are really apples and oranges. There is a much larger Jesuit community at Fordham that Georgetown.
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  • JuniorMintJuniorMint 1465 replies26 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Funny, JuniorMint, my son says he knows about grade inflation at G-Town, and he considers that a plus too. :)

    Although I'm sure living in the Bronx would be a plus as well.
    Georgetown is more selective for students, the Jesuits were commenting on the respective schools' faculty providing undergraduate instruction. Those are really apples and oranges. There is a much larger Jesuit community at Fordham that Georgetown.

    Father McShane knows how to keep a tidy ship. ;)
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