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Hidden Gem Colleges - PA and Midwest


Replies to: Hidden Gem Colleges - PA and Midwest

  • twoinanddonetwoinanddone Registered User Posts: 14,569 Senior Member
    My friend and my daughters were heading to the same school. Her daughter is extremely shy. We were talking about sororities and friend said her daughter wasn't interested. Sadly, my friend was killed right before the girls headed to college. Her daughter was very sad and lonely the first weeks of school, so my daughter suggested she go through Rush with her. Of course the story ends with both girls joining the same sorority, and the other girl becoming very involved, an officer, a big sister. My daughter? Not so involved.

    So don't write off what a 16 or 17 year old says about Greek life. Some change their minds, some don't mind that it is a big presence on campus and there are a lot of parties, parades, activities that non-Greeks can participate in too.
  • KMichKMich Registered User Posts: 58 Junior Member
    Kalamazoo College and College of Wooster are both really nice. My D did not like Denison and their merit was way below the other two (over $10K lower per year).
  • saany123saany123 Registered User Posts: 37 Junior Member
    @eandesmom Hi! Just wondering since you said you were hunting for merit. Did you mean merit in general or merit specifically for your child's stats? Kalamazoo happens to be known for being quite generous...
  • eandesmomeandesmom Registered User Posts: 3,099 Senior Member
    @saany123 Hi, we were hunting for merit for my S17. He wouldn't consider Kalamazoo (location, and K plan weren't quite a fit) but it is known for being generous. It may be one I can get my S19 to look at, we will see, at the moment he wants urban.
  • klinskaklinska Registered User Posts: 433 Member
    edited May 18
    @KMich That's interesting what you say about Denison--my D17 (with stats solidly in the 25%-75% range--nowhere near above the 75%tile) got a fairly generous merit offer from them $24K), plus work study money (Denison was the only school to offer WS money, and we didn't even complete the CSS Profile)--I knew we weren't going to qualify for any federal or institutional need-based aid--we only filled out the FAFSA to qualify for the unsubsidized loan, in case it was needed. Wooster was generous as well, and they start with a lower sticker price, so I was sorry that my D wasn't considering it more seriously once the acceptances were in.

    Can't remember--did Susquehanna come up as one of the hidden gems of PA? They were the most generous of all the schools from which my D received merit aid--brought COA to approx. $30K and was probably going to be tied (with Wooster) for the least expensive of all schools she was accepted to with the exception of our in-state flagship. I only became aware of it through time spent on CC--it has a few devoted fans here.
  • MidwestmomofboysMidwestmomofboys Registered User Posts: 2,937 Senior Member
    Interesting to hear @kmich experience with Denison -- my kid received comparable merit aid at each of K, Wooster and Denison -- roughly 1/2 tuition at each school. We did find that Denison's terms for keeping the merit were more flexible than Kalamazoo's, and some other schools, as best I recall. At K, I believe it was a mandated gpa after freshman year, or the student lost the award, though I could be mis-remembering about losing the merit award entirely. At Denison, it was a mandated gpa after 2 years, and if the student did not meet that, they did not lose the award entirely, only dropped a tier. While the required gpa was reasonable at all the schools, it was reassuring to feel there was some more cushion if the transition was rockier than expected.
  • toowonderfultoowonderful Registered User Posts: 3,511 Senior Member
    My D also got at least 1/2 tuition at Denison - it was a really strong package.
  • eandesmomeandesmom Registered User Posts: 3,099 Senior Member
    Allegheny was our strongest package, over 1/2 tuition.

    Ursinus ended up coming close to half but it took an appeal to get there and it was partial FA so some of it was not guaranteed to renew in following years.

    Both had attractive requirements for maintaining scholarship funds (2.0)
  • xanthippexanthippe Registered User Posts: 136 Junior Member
    College of Wooster was by far our child's strongest package -- merit scholarship (for good but not stellar test scores) plus music scholarship resulted in a non-need based award that cut tuition by more than 2/3. Wooster is an excellent school that combines strong academics with outstanding arts programs.
  • jcmom716jcmom716 Registered User Posts: 328 Member
    @xanthippe OP here. Do you have any insight on what most kids do on weekends at Wooster? My son liked what he saw and heard from Wooster and is currently high on his list. Any and all additional comments are welcome! Where did your child decide to attend?
  • xanthippexanthippe Registered User Posts: 136 Junior Member
    @jcmom716 I sent you a PM. Also, @janjmom has a son attending Wooster, and was extremely helpful in providing us with great and positive insights on the school.
  • citymama9citymama9 Registered User Posts: 1,734 Senior Member
    I would also love to hear about the social life at Wooster if anyone wants to comment here. Thanks.
  • jcmom716jcmom716 Registered User Posts: 328 Member
    @janjmom Thanks for your input! Where else did your son look before choosing Wooster and was it a hard choice? For a mom, it has to be great to hear your son would choose Wooster again. To me, it means whatever led up to the decision is all worth it ;) For my son, I want him to find his group. Some will say you can find that anywhere. And while that may be true, isn't it better to be in a situation where it's easier rather than harder? He gets along with most, a bit quiet (funny once you get to know him), and test smart, but not always common sense smart. One of his drawbacks is he would spend more time helping his friends get through their classwork, than work on his own homework. Finding a small college that will allow him to grow personally and have intellectual peers who like to play video games or hang out in small groups over the weekend would be ideal.

    At Wooster, it seems to be a good fit. He picked up on the friendliness of many students. When we ate in the cafeteria he met a girl from Connecticut who put my son at ease and they had a nice discussion. I do have a few questions if you don't mind me asking?

    What field/major is your son in and does he plan to go on to grad school? My son is thinking that he doesn't plan on grad school and wants a job after four years. He isn't sure on a major but is currently interested in math/stats/economics/computer science. It appears Wooster has a stronger number of math students than some of the others we've looked at. With a lot of discussion while we were there on the IS and undergraduate research (which is great for many and I actually think could help improve my son's skills), not a lot was said on internships. Do you have any insight on internship opportunities or in general what percentage of students go on to grad school? Many of the schools he's interested in have over 90% job/grad school rates (taken with a grain of salt), but Wooster does seem more focused on the grad school route...maybe only perception?
  • jcmom716jcmom716 Registered User Posts: 328 Member
    @xanthippe Thanks for the PM, sent you a message back and congrats to your daughter!
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