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Need LAC suggestions for future "Nate Silver" kid... :-)

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Replies to: Need LAC suggestions for future "Nate Silver" kid... :-)

  • agatha1939agatha1939 Registered User Posts: 38 Junior Member
    @ucbalumnus
    The two initial screens that are relatively easy to do:

    A. Financial. Run the net price calculator on each school's web site to see if it is likely to be affordable. If not affordable at list price or on need-based financial aid, then the reach/match/safety assessment must be made on the merit scholarships needed for affordability, not merely admission (an admission safety may be a reach for the needed merit scholarship).

    I can afford to be full-pay, he's my only child and I saved enough. I just mentioned merit because it would be a plus if he gets it, but it's not a requirement. If we find a perfect fit and a school he really loves and is accepted and we get nothing (merit/financial), I will pay then.
  • ucbalumnusucbalumnus Registered User Posts: 63,578 Senior Member
    Smaller colleges with convenient cross registration with other schools (convenient commuting, same academic calendar) can be helpful in increasing the available academic offerings. E.g. Amherst students may find the expanded offerings of the University of Massachusetts - Amherst to be useful for more obscure or graduate level courses.
  • doschicosdoschicos Registered User Posts: 14,784 Senior Member
    HAVERFORD - definite yes

    Also, Carleton (I'm a big fan and don't think he should judge based on the internet readings), St. Olaf, Colorado College, Vassar, Wesleyan.

    I think of all the Maine schools, Bates would be the best fit. Maybe if he visits, he'll see that.

    I think he would have no problem with sexual orientation issues at Macalaster or Carleton.

  • roycroftmomroycroftmom Registered User Posts: 649 Member
    As you brought up his orientation as a factor, you may wish to have him contact LGBTQ clubs at campuses of interest as part of the college search. Some posters have commented that small schools may sometimes lack a critical mass of similar people for support or eventually dating purposes in the future.
  • agatha1939agatha1939 Registered User Posts: 38 Junior Member
    @roycroftmom
    As you brought up his orientation as a factor, you may wish to have him contact LGBTQ clubs at campuses of interest as part of the college search. Some posters have commented that small schools may sometimes lack a critical mass of similar people for support or eventually dating purposes in the future.

    Yes, that's why I wish he would consider bigger schools, there's always a group for everybody... but so far he is only considering small AND rural (at least, urban would give him more options...). But I like your suggestion and will ask him to call the clubs of those schools and then we can go from there. Thanks!
  • TwicerTwicer Registered User Posts: 155 Junior Member
    @agatha1939 your son has a long list of criteria. It might be a useful exercise to prioritize them (including strength of the program he wants to study and academic options in case he changes his major) and determine must-haves versus nice-to-haves.
  • cobratcobrat Registered User Posts: 12,285 Senior Member
    edited May 1
    The ironic part is despite Oberlin's being considered "too lefty" by OP's S which is understandable, it has long been considered one of the most LGBTQ friendly colleges in the nation even before I entered in the mid-'90s.

    Several undergrad classmates, especially those from the more conservative parts of the Midwest/South cited this as one of their major factors for applying to and attending Oberlin over other LACs or even larger universities. And this was in the mid-late '90s when LGBTQ activism was nowhere near the level of mainstream consciousness that it has been in the last decade.
  • college_querycollege_query Registered User Posts: 4,028 Senior Member
    When I read his desired qualities, I immediately thought of Bowdoin, where my S graduated from a year ago. Smart kids, not competitive/cut-throat, no Greek life, small class sizes, cold weather, trees. And great food! S's main EC was music, and he participated all four years at Bowdoin, even though he did not major in it.
  • agatha1939agatha1939 Registered User Posts: 38 Junior Member
    @Twicer

    His number 1 request is NICE kids. He wants to be in a school where kids are smart/intellectual but also help each other (not competitive). This is the first thing he will tell everyone who asks him about schools. His HS environment really makes him sad :-(

    After that, he wants LAC (small classes with discussions) with strong math and a good music program (where he can participate without being a major).

    Number 3 would be cold weather, he likes snow (we lived a few years in Canada, loved it).

    He does prefer rural, but I think if we find an urban campus with lots of trees he would be OK... but he wants the "campus" feel we see in movies.
  • ucbalumnusucbalumnus Registered User Posts: 63,578 Senior Member
    What math is he in as a high school senior?
  • wisteria100wisteria100 Registered User Posts: 3,051 Senior Member
    Holy Cross - fits your criteria on a number of points
    Moderate, Smart kids, Strong poli sci department with Washington D.C. semester and an honors program for upper classmen, Cold weather & snow for sure, really nice kids, active LGBTQ group on campus supported by administration and alums, good amount of LGBTQ faculty/staff as identified on web-site, Kids work hard but are not cut-throat, No Greek life. Don't know a lot about the music program, but they do offer a music scholarship, so assuming the program is fine, and they are building a new arts center, and did I say really really nice kids.
  • CorbettCorbett Registered User Posts: 2,729 Senior Member
    edited May 1
    -LAC with small classes, seminars/tutorials would be great (although I’m not sure these are available in US). Big schools are out.
    The US school that is most identified with Oxbridge-style (2-person) tutorials is Williams. Williams is also one of the top math LACs. Williams also qualifies (very easily) under the "cold weather", "not urban", and "no Greek life" criteria.

    Your son has apparently determined that Williams is too "preppy/jocky". Yet he has reached the opposite conclusion about ... Colby ?? Colby would rank quite highly on most people's lists of "schools like Williams". People who apply to Williams routinely apply to Colby (which is slightly less selective) as well.

    If your son is statistically minded, he might find the following numbers interesting:

    You could certainly argue that Williams is "jocky"; the US Dept. of Education's database shows that 747 of 2070 students were varsity athletes, which is 36%. For comparison, the numbers at Colby were 664 out of 1857, which is ... 36%.
    https://ope.ed.gov/athletics/#/institution/search

    You could also make a case that Williams is "preppy". A recent NYTimes analysis found that 18.1% of Williams students were from the Top 1% income bracket. For comparison, the number at Colby was ... 20.4%.
    https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2017/01/18/upshot/some-colleges-have-more-students-from-the-top-1-percent-than-the-bottom-60.html
  • MAB222MAB222 Registered User Posts: 164 Junior Member
    I know you live in Virginia and specifically said LAC but has he/you considered Georgetown? Some of the truly nicest students I have every encountered and very large/accepting Gay community. Though it is in Washington DC the campus is self-contained. Offers everything academically your son is looking for and has a active music presence as well.
  • agatha1939agatha1939 Registered User Posts: 38 Junior Member
    edited May 1
    @ucbalumnus I will have to confirm with him, but he's taken BC calculus and Discrete Math and is planning to take Linear Algebra (?) this year. He also took (and LOVED) all statistics courses available in his school and was complaining that nothing higher will be available for him this year.

    Even though he's very strong in math and I worry he may run out of classes in small LACs, he says since he's planning to double major he will be busy with other classes anyway, so he's not that worried with rigor. But I do know he likes stats way more than pure math, which is also another reason I would prefer an university, there aren't many schools offering stats majors.

    I asked him to research some schools' courses list and let me know what he thinks.
  • agatha1939agatha1939 Registered User Posts: 38 Junior Member
    @Corbett
    Your son has apparently determined that Williams is too "preppy/jocky". Yet he has reached the opposite conclusion about ... Colby ?? Colby would rank quite highly on most people's lists of "schools like Williams". People who apply to Williams routinely apply to Colby (which is slightly less selective) as well.

    I agree with you, from their websites I see NO difference between Williams, Bowdoin, Colby, etc... who knows how he reached that conclusion? :-) But that's not set in stone, I want him to visit all these schools before making a decision to apply or not. Thanks!
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