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Colleges for the Jewish "B" student

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Replies to: Colleges for the Jewish "B" student

  • Sop14's MomSop14's Mom 776 replies16 threadsRegistered User Member
    Actually, the OP did clarify: her S doesn't need kosher food, but an active Hillel. This means a critical mass of students sufficiently interested in Jewish life to create a vibrant Jewish community, both religious and social. It means not having just three people at the Hillel Shabbat dinner table, it means not feeling like a minority 24/7, and it means having a choice of people to date.
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  • college4threecollege4three 937 replies34 threadsRegistered User Member
    Definitely Clark, F and M, Goucher and Muhlenberg. I've heard good feedback from Jewish kids at American. Having been to Susquehanna (and loved it for my Jewish D although she chose elsewhere), it's a great school with a growing Jewish population. BU always and UMass Amherst.
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  • momjrmomjr 2194 replies8 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    I'll second the suggestions of Delaware and Towson. I know many Jewish students who have had good experiences at these schools. I grew up in the Baltimore area and had a similar opinion of Towson to the OP's. When my daughter and I visited we were pleasantly surprised. The school has a pretty campus in a great location with up to date facitlities. The location, in walking distance to shopping and restaurants is very appealing. The students seemed happy and engaged. I think it would be a good safety school for your son. They have rolling admissions, so he would hear early and could relax.
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  • LINYMOMLINYMOM 2282 replies24 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    thanks for posting about Delaware - particularly the Freshman Fest program. I found a link for it on the Delaware forum and it looked awesome - this is exactly the type of info I'm looking for - I had no idea that Delaware had so many Jewish students and such an active Hillel. It's a little bigger than I had in mind - but I'm absolutely keeping it on the list. Thank you!

    D signed up for Freshman Fest as soon as she deposited at UD. The program has quickly grown from 50 freshmen to 200, who come in about a day and a half early. So many students we met at UD Hillel said they met their best friends/roommates at Freshman Fest. There are already close to 100 listed who joined the Freshman Fest Facebook group. for this August. (Check out the UD thread on CC- there's been a lot of talk about it there.)
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  • JHSJHS 18382 replies71 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    rodney -- You're right, in that I'm talking about kids who graduated from high school in 2000-2005. Also, they all went to a very strong school, where a 3.5 GPA put you solidly in the top half of the class, and the top half of the class went to top 15/10 unis/LACs. The kids who went to Elon were definitely in the bottom quartile, but the bottom quartile of a strong pool.
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  • quakerstakequakerstake 770 replies9 threadsRegistered User Member
    The University of Kansas has a surprisingly large Jewish community. (Lawrence is close to Kansas City by the way.) Its Hillel has won national awards. Here is a link that may be of interest:

    YouTube - Rock Chalk Shabbat
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  • rockvillemomrockvillemom 6941 replies183 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    I am so pleased with this thread - thanks to everyone who has weighed in.

    Thanks to 2boysima, SlitheyTove and Sop14's Mom for helping to define what I am looking for in terms of Jewish life. Our background is reform Judiasm. S2 is very active in BBYO. I am looking for colleges that have more than 50-60 Jewish students - which has been an issue at some of the smaller LACs - particularly in the Carolinas and Virginia. I don't have an exact target but 10% Jewish would be great - a little less is not a deal breaker. I would like a college with an active Hillel - at least a few social events every month - maybe some community outreach - special programming for major holidays - that sort of thing. I don't want or expect him to socialize only with Jewish students - that is not his life now - we live in a very diverse community. But I do want him to have Jewish friends and a Jewish dating life.

    One of the things I'm trying to do is weed out schools that seem to fit initially, but do not have the number of Jewish students or an active Hillel to warrant further consideration. High Point is an example of this. It seemed to be a good fit as a safety school, but it does not have what I am looking for in Jewish life, so it is off our list. Susquehanna is still a question mark - I welcome more anecdotes and will continue to research - might visit in the fall.

    CountingDown - his PSAT results were not good - about a 140 both times he took it - 9th and 10th grades - so that's like saying a 1400/2400. He did much better on the PLAN - a 26. My research (anecdotal - not terribly scientific) tells me that most kids do 2-4 points better on the actual ACT than they did on the PLAN, which is why I feel pretty comfortable saying he could score 28 - 29 on the real ACT.

    My goal is to start his junior year with a list of about 10 safety/match schools that are on the east coast and within driving range, prefer size greater than 2000 students and less than 15,000, with an undergraduate business program ( he is unsure about major, but this is a possibility) and with an active Hillel. I actually enjoy researching and visiting colleges - it's making the list itself that has stumped me a bit. Thanks for your help.
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  • happymomof1happymomof1 29606 replies173 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Fast Fact: WJHS sends more graduates to Montgomery College every single year than it sends to UMCP. A quick look at the "senior scatter" for the last few years at rockvilleson's HS will probably show exactly the same pattern. This means he doesn't have to look at Towson/Salisbury/Frostburg right off the bat as far as safeties are concerned. If rockvilleson is truly serious about business he should apply to the Macklin Business Institute. But even if he doesn't do that, he can be confident that the first two years of business education are solid.

    What about taking a look at the second tier of Quaker schools? Haverford & Swarthmore would be out of range, but Guilford should be possible and there is a business major.
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  • KLuckyKLucky 143 replies2 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    I drive past the UD Hillel building every Friday right before Shabbat services start----lots of kids going in, hanging out in front. It seems like they have many service and fun activities each month :)
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  • Queen's MomQueen's Mom 2161 replies37 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    I think Goucher could be an in-state safety as well since he is male (they are sorely in need of boys). It has a very nice Jewish community and I think, a better reputation than Towson or Salisbury.

    On the down side, I think it is a little small for you and I don't think it has business.

    I also second Binghamton. It is the perfect size, has business (if he can get in) and they will definitely take a kid with his stats from OOS. The Jewish community there is FABULOUS!!!

    ETA: EricLG, I'm sorry you didn't receive your Zionist conspiracy handbook in the mail this month. It has all the latest codes in it. It must have been delayed due to Shavuot. ;)
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  • rockvillemomrockvillemom 6941 replies183 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    QM - that was hysterical!
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  • rodneyrodney 9267 replies139 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    RM: thanks for the "heads up" on this thread; great idea...

    JHS: thanks for the clarification......
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  • JustAMomOf4JustAMomOf4 4425 replies138 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Might want to consider Stevenson University. Great school for a B+ student, probably would get merit and located in a big Jewish area. Lots of Jewish students. No Hillel but maybe they could start one? It is an up and coming and growing school.
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  • college4threecollege4three 937 replies34 threadsRegistered User Member
    Bryant University for sure, if he's interested in Business.
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  • BrooklynborndadBrooklynborndad 2209 replies54 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    UR sounds kind of reachy. DD was WLed with a 3.7 Weighted from TJ.

    We spent a quite a bit of time at Lehigh, we were there on Pesach for the second seder. I don't think you could go wrong with the Jewish life there. DD ultimately passed on Lehigh cause RPI had a better program in her area, and gave lots more money. It was a tough decision though. (Lehigh is also strong in undergrad business)

    If your son is okay with a large campus, there are lots of options. We know Jewish kids headed to UNC-Greensboro, to U Alabama, both of which I think will match your minimum jewish life numbers, at least. UNC if he can get in, is even better, IIUC.

    LACs down south are something else, I guess. If a small school is a must Muehlenberg would seem the most obvious safe one with a large Jewish community.

    We also know someone who went to Towson, but she's transferring now.

    We considered UD as a safety, but took it off cause it lacked the right academic programs for DD.
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  • ClarkAlumClarkAlum 168 replies14 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    Nice article on Clark University's history of Jewish life:

    Shelly Tenenbaum | The Vicissitudes of Tolerance: Jewish Faculty and Students at Clark University | The Massachusetts Historical Review, 5 | The History Cooperative

    I'm terribly biased (as a Clark alum with my D starting at Clark this fall), but you should definitely consider a visit.
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  • mythmommythmom 8292 replies13 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    I have been following this thread with interest, but have nothing to add. I am Jewish, but not knowledgeable in this area.

    Forgive me for violating the terms of the first post, and I mean this in a very kind way. I have no problem with the parameters of the discussion (though not a consideration for my family, but staying in the Northeast is its own kind of filter.) I hope you find exactly the the right mix for your son.

    However, I am going to suggest that you temper your discussion to reflect the child's role in the process. I say this as someone who had difficulty taking my own advice, so not as a criticism.

    You repeatedly say, "What I'm looking for."

    This is the student's project. We can help, but too many I statements of the part of parents defeats the purpose of going away to college.

    I know he's young and it's natural to start from this point.

    And please forgive me in advance. I really don't mean to be obnoxious; I just mean to gently bring something to your attention that we all have to learn along the way.
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  • mdcisspmdcissp 2189 replies305 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    I strongly encourage the OP to sign her son up for an excellent SAT or ACT prep class. Higher scores will increase his chances at some of the schools and may result in more merit scholarship money.
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  • mdcisspmdcissp 2189 replies305 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    I have a different point of view. I think it is fine for the OP to research schools which she feels that her son might want to consider. I do a lot of research to try to match my kids with the right schools. Of course, my kids can participate as much as they want in the college selection process. However, I think parents know their kids best, know their finances, and want to see if there is anything out there that should be considered that they or their kids did not mention. For example, SUNY Binghampton has been recommended to me and my son will likely apply there. If no one brought SUNY Binghampton to our attention, I doubt that my son would consider it. In the end, it is the kid's choice, with parent input if the parent's finances are involved with the decision.
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  • rockvillemomrockvillemom 6941 replies183 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    mythmom - no problem. I know we all chuckle when parents say things like "we got a 30 on the ACT" and "we are applying to Princeton", etc. I guess I should have explained that S2 and I have had several discussions about what he is interested in and while I might slip and use the pronoun "I" these are criteria that have been developed in conjunction with him and DH. S2 is very laidback and easygoing - no real strong preferences yet on any issue in particular - but he seems to agree with my guidelines. One of my goals for this thread is that as I develop this list and we visit colleges - his preferences may become more evident and I will certainly respect them. I may find that after visiting Gettysburg and Muhlenberg he finds them to be too small and that he loves larger schools like Delaware and JMU. That's the benefit of starting this process rather early - it gives us time to change and refine the list as his ideas about college wants and needs develop. But thanks for reminding me to watch my pronouns!
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