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RPI Summer ARCH program - Run away

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Replies to: RPI Summer ARCH program - Run away

  • blevineblevine 853 replies29 threads Member
    My son is a CS major, probably one of the more marketable degrees for coops/internships. RPI name did help him get interviews at the top tech firms but tough to actually get offers. I am sure many will end up working at McDonald's during their semester away and/or taking community college courses.

    That said my son had the traditional pre-ARCH experience and found good summer internships and even an in-semester coop nearby in Albany. He met good classmates who helped each other, and the CS department at RPI is fantastic. He was given the OPTION to be in ARCH, last class it was optional, and he of course declined. He rented an off campus apt, which he'll stay in Junior-Senior years, no need to move until he graduates. My other son (different school) did the summer school move within campus May and again in August, what a pain.

    Overall I have found RPI to be a very good school, Troy not terrible, but not great either. Excellent education IMO,
    but ARCH is just done wrong. If anything, they should give you some financial incentive to go to summer school, discounted tuition and housing to sell those empty seats, and make it optional. Also the away semester should be optional. Graduate early or semester away should be equally valid options. While I am glad my kid went to RPI, I would definitely not send him there now given the ARCH current state.
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  • NewSR1NewSR1 77 replies9 threads Junior Member
    "@Ultramarine777 The parent group is on FB and you can only be a member after your son has been committed to RPI."

    This was a big red flag for us when we were deciding between schools. Every other school including small 2000 kid SLAC's had parent groups that welcomed all parents of admitted students. The bigger schools even had admitted parent groups on top of welcoming kids too. The fact that RPI was not welcoming of anyone unless they were actually matriculating with a paid deposit was a negative.

    ARCH was one of her main deciding factors in not choosing RPI, but the admitted student meeting in DC was a train wreck. They couldn't get their slide show to work. They had one dean from the liberal arts school there. Watching paint dry was more exciting than listening to her talk. They didn't separate the kids and parents like most schools do so there was no interactions. Once they finally got the computer to work, it was already an hour in of boring Q&A (mostly about how ARCH will work, some didn't even seem to know about it.) and they went flying thru the presentation and it was over.

    Then, no way to ask other parents of the college what certain things were like on FB, like I could do with all the other schools? Negative all the way around. Too many questions, too many what if's. Not very welcoming and positive.
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  • benee16benee16 25 replies1 threads Junior Member
    RPI had been my son's first choice. My husband is an alumni and enjoyed his time at RPI. He has brought my son to many Railroad club operating sessions run on campus, which unfortunately the railroad club was removed from their space due to renovations this year, with no relocation space offered. We became concerned when hearing about the arch. I had tried to get answers to my questions about housing, internships, and the difficulty of having a dual major and class scheduling. The answers were vague, or 'hopeful'. I'm not interested in paying to be the guinea pig. We were not impressed with accepted student day. The exit at the first meeting took longer than the actual speakers. The cold sandwiches given at lunch were left out from the morning for you to pick up in a box, and we got water to drink with it, whoo hoo special, While we were eating and talking to one family a few people started talking to my son about WPI since they were also accepted there, and there was definitely concern over the arch being forced on new students. Being a Computer Science major, we were the last group to leave the hockey arena and were 40 minutes late starting our meeting. The slide show was old and sad compared to other schools we visited and by the time we left there and ate lunch, the only arch meeting they had located across campus, was long done. My son does not want to be forced to take classes during the summer, and looking at the summer courses offered, he wouldn't have much to choose from to fill up a semester. We then went to the game major question and answer session, but again, not much of a presentation. We wandered around campus and ended up leaving around 2. My son ended up accepting to Worcester Polytech. They had a much more organized accepted student day, with multiple presentations for large majors, lab tours, and a hot lunch with multiple beverages and ice cream sundaes.The presenters were passionate about their field, and we even went on an extended lab tour because she wanted to show off everything. We met many students, who talked about their experiences, and in general it felt like the right fit for my son. I wish everyone good luck with wherever their child ends up. I hope their experience is a good one.
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  • RPIchemEsonRPIchemEson 31 replies0 threads Junior Member
    That has nothing to do with Arch or any of RPI's policies...the RPI Parent's group is simply a Facebook group moderated by all-volunteer parents of current and enrolled RPI students -- nothing more. It is simply not a wide-open group for anybody that wants to join and talk about RPI is all...
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  • RPIchemEsonRPIchemEson 31 replies0 threads Junior Member
    Actually the model railroad has been relocated to space rented by RPI in town, months ago now.
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  • sdl0625sdl0625 931 replies13 threads Member
    I would be curious what RPI's yield will be this year.
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  • Spark2018Spark2018 100 replies0 threads Junior Member
    Why? I'm more curious about RIT yield now. Let's toss in WPI while we are here. I have this feeling no matter what the yield is posters will try to use it to take an unwarranted dig on RPI.
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  • EmpireappleEmpireapple 2216 replies28 threads Senior Member
    It is unfortunate RPI doesn't seem to be considering the needs and wants of their consumers. Poor business model. First they go after Greek life which is an important choice for some on campus and IMHO, vital to providing a collegiate life in Troy. Now they are forcing students to live on campus in the summer and purchase a meal plan.

    Are the Trustees really happy they renewed Shirley Jackson's contract? I see more bad press about her than good.
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  • Spark2018Spark2018 100 replies0 threads Junior Member
    @shuttlebus I think your comments are on point and I agree. Personally, except for the excesses and transgressions, I've been neutral. Not my thing, but also I'm not one to tell others what to do with their time. Movies and TV have created inaccurate images. On the other hand, clearly our culture is changing, and organizations that don't embrace diversity and inclusion are fighting the tide of history. My comments are not directed at professional fraternities based on grades and professional interests. I prefer to think that the administration desires to be ahead of the curve, and not 'that institution' on the front page following a tragedy. Certainly there are many posters here who will pounce on SJ should something happen on her watch.
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  • StudentsR1stStudentsR1st 131 replies8 threads Junior Member
    Stuff makes the news because the events are not a common or expected occurrence. One also runs the risk of interpreting an increase in reported incidents as an increase in incidents.
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  • NewSR1NewSR1 77 replies9 threads Junior Member
    @benee16 - my daughter chose WPI as well. I know RPI has the bigger name, but we too were impressed with how passionate the professors were. I mean like really passionate and happy. It was a complete standout compared to every other accepted student day we attended. The same with the students. At first I was annoyed accepted student day was mid week, but it was great to see the school in action. I am sure RPI is a great school and their students will go on to do great things, but for the next couple of years, the school is in limbo with this new ARCH program. Reddit, here, and other college forums are not talking highly of it at all. I can't find one person who wants or did the trial last summer and enjoyed it. Who knows whether it will change if my daughter went there, but she wanted to know her calendar years in advance. She already has a paid internship lined up for summers so that made it a big deal too. We also didn't want to pay for room and meals for 5 semesters and didn't want to pay for off campus year round housing in junior year if they were only living there one semester. So many kids would probably have to choose on campus for 6 full semesters. That was a financial deal breakers. Her top 2 choices, WPI and Purdue, both have very cheap off-campus housing in walking distance. That changes the overall cost dramatically.

    In the end, we are glad she applied to a bunch of colleges and was able to pick one that would work for her. I guess that is what is so great about all these colleges being so different from one another. Everyone will find one that works best for them. Good luck all!
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  • RPIparent77RPIparent77 20 replies1 threads Junior Member
    Update: the challenge continues with ARCH. Checkin was a complete cluster. My child is in a very tiny and older double person dorm room with a shared hallway bath, and being charged more for the summer than fall. The summer is 6 weeks shorter!! They could not get room keys until Sunday morning, classes stared next morning. According to my child: this is insane, I waited almost an hour in line to get my room key to a building that I just cant wait to spend my summer in- Not!!! Most kids morale is low and angry this is what they are mandated to do!!

    There was a early morning orientation that spewed complete garbage about how everyone is so excited and prepared for this summer at RPI. People looked at each other laughing and disgusted. The common discussion - why are we paying such a high cost for less weeks on campus, the unorganized and unhappy students.

    Also - HUGE ISSUE!! The work study program....yeah joke! Students can not begin to work until July 1st! That means no income for over a month for those that need it most!! Not allowed to take the max credit hours, cant earn money, and living in a run down closet, mmmmm so far not so good!!
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  • StudentsR1stStudentsR1st 131 replies8 threads Junior Member
    It seems like a slogan is in order such as the following. Arch you should fear. Avoid Rensselaer.
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  • RPIparent77RPIparent77 20 replies1 threads Junior Member
    Hello, this is to let all know that RPI is losing ground fast. I have a child that is first year mandatory Arch student. It has been nothing short of disgusting! Today I received photos of the shared bathroom that has mold dripping off the ceiling. We are paying inflated costs for on campus housing, true Freshman dormitories that are the lowest quality. Unsafe, and unsanitary! They have not had any paper products since last Wednesday - more than a week! Nothing cleaned or maintained. Dinning halls were closed last weekend for the 3 day holiday (4 days after classes began). Please note it is MANDATORY they live where told on campus and purchase a meal plan as a Junior!! The cost of this ARCH and the morale of the students combined makes me want to throw up. We have decided that there will be no Masters or additional schooling at RPI. Please understand, at this point they can not transfer because of too many credits. Shirley Jackson knows exactly what she just created. So, we are 2.5 semester free from what I would call an awful college experience for my child, and a very expensive one!
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  • RPIparent77RPIparent77 20 replies1 threads Junior Member
    Also, work study does not begin until July 1st leaving the students that need the help the most...screwed! So, they are charging more and then the kids that typically work during the summer to help fund their schooling have zero income!
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  • RPIparent77RPIparent77 20 replies1 threads Junior Member
    I have read many forums stating this program is “optional”. That is not true! This is 100 % mandatory, and the only way you can be let out of it is if you play a sport the school decides worthy or EXTREME circumstances. They do not put you in a co-op, the student must fight like hell to find one. If they cannot they have to submit written papers regularly during their off semester I am being told. We feel very taken advantage of. I am a Cornell grad folks, so I am not just a parent that does not understand the process. This is totally going to hurt RPI, their candidate pool, and long term reputation.
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  • momofsenior1momofsenior1 9859 replies110 threads Senior Member
    This is so sad to hear. My D loved RPI when we visited, they gave her great merit $, but ultimately she chose another school, partially because of not wanting to be a guinea pig for the ARCH program. I second guessed her decision for a while but after reading all the ARCH horror stories, I'm so relieved.

    So sorry for your student and the others!
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  • TQfromtheUTQfromtheU 1540 replies17 threads Senior Member
    Sorry to hear that. What building?

    My DS is happy as a clam with his ARCH experience so far. He selects the lowest mean plan and converts it all to Flex. The people at Panera should know him by name.
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