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Who's going to the US?

writtenonthebodywrittenonthebody Registered User Posts: 68 Junior Member
edited October 2012 in Singapore
Alright. I know some of you have applied to US/Canadian universities and are going to be heading there this Fall. If you've made your decision which uni you're going to end up at, post it here!

I think I'm going Udub!
Post edited by writtenonthebody on

Replies to: Who's going to the US?

  • hellothere777hellothere777 Registered User Posts: 10 New Member
    Will be heading to U Of Michigan! :)
  • muffincakesmuffincakes Registered User Posts: 19 New Member

    Be wary of UW, my cousin goes there. Make sure you understand that you are NOT guaranteed your major unless you were direct admitted. If you weren't DA'ed, engineering is EXTREMELY competitive and treat it as a 50% chance that you won't make it into your major.

    I will be heading to UIUC in the Fall. Anyone else going there?
  • writtenonthebodywrittenonthebody Registered User Posts: 68 Junior Member
    muffin, I'm aware of that. I'm not going to be majoring in engineering anyway. But I AM aware that there are many other majors that are just as competitive. Is your cousin Singaporean? What does he have to say about udub other than getting into his major?
  • muffincakesmuffincakes Registered User Posts: 19 New Member
    He is American by nationality. He liked the place, but is now depressed and considering dropping out because they've made it impossible for him to graduate with his desired (engineering) major. Switching his major would mean retaining for at least another year to fulfill the prereqs. From what I hear, for every person who gets into their major there are 2-3 who don't. And they aren't stupid people either.

    I also got into UW, but since I didn't get direct admit into CS, threw the acceptance away. Not worth the drama and risk! Simply put: if a school isn't invested in me, I won't invest myself in them.
  • Rosewood24Rosewood24 Registered User Posts: 30 New Member
    Anyone can offer any more info on UW? Interested to go there for it's geophysics program.
  • writtenonthebodywrittenonthebody Registered User Posts: 68 Junior Member
    rosewood, what exactly do you want to know about uw?
  • Rosewood24Rosewood24 Registered User Posts: 30 New Member
    Are there many Singaporeans going over to UW? In the past UO and UW had a lot of Singaporeans like around the 1980s but now I'm not so sure as well. Most Singaporeans I know talk about UMich/Duke/Cornell etc.

    Also, what is the general impression Singaporeans have about UW? Is it considered a good school? Though its ranked pretty well in most categories, its rising costs and rather large student population may be a problem in terms of Teacher-Student Interaction.

    I'm looking at UW as a first choice(UO 2nd) double majoring in Physics/Geology and it has an excellent program for it, albeit at the graduate level(Glaciology). However, I'm just concerned if I'm missing out on any other better schools that can provide a cheaper and better college experience.
  • nickoonickoo Registered User Posts: 28 New Member
    @muffincakes: im heading to uiuc too! im doing mech e.
  • lonelyheartsclublonelyheartsclub Registered User Posts: 52 Junior Member
    IMHO Singaporeans shouldn't look to go State schools if a private equivalent is available; the experience simply isn't justified by the price. Why would you, say, go to Berkeley, pay that full international tuition and suffer through an underwhelming undergraduate experience jostling for attention, grades, internships and all the goodies everyone craves when you could be paying the same amount and attending, say, an equivalent LAC (or even simply any other private school).

    Especially given the fact that you're going to graduate school, which diminishes the utility of going to large research universities for undergraduate by quite a bit (that comes from the larger prestige, deserved or otherwise). Why not go to one of the East Coast LACs (Or the Claremont colleges ;))that're good in the discipline you're interested in, that's much more bang-for-your-very-large-sum-of-bucks don't you think? Bear in mind that LACs (the top ones at any rate) excel at prepping students for grad school.
  • writtenonthebodywrittenonthebody Registered User Posts: 68 Junior Member
    Rosewood, no there aren't many Singaporeans in UW. It's a fact that most Singaporeans these days are way more concerned with the prestige and ranking of a school rather than the school's program - so it is no surprise many seem only to be aware of ivy league institutions, or like you said, duke, and perhaps UCB, UCLA etc. UW is reputable within the states, but I can't answer your question on what Singapore's general impression of UW is. However, looking at the degree you're going to do, I don't think there would be much use in coming back to Singapore if you're planning to go into research.

    While I concur with lonelyheartsclub about the advantage of going to liberal arts colleges because classes are smaller and students get more attention, I think it would be better to do physics/geo in UW. In general, I'll say that LACs cost more than UW. Moreover, UW has a lot of research and internship opportunities that are going to be crucial when you apply for your graduate degree. I hope you are also aware on the large support system UW has (even though it is an incredibly large university), such as FIGs and CLUE, etc. Like you've said, UW also has an excellent program for both the majors which you are considering.

    There is no 'better college experience'. It's what you make of your time at the university that determines how good that experience will be. Everyone is different - some find that liberal arts college is better, for example, because you live within a tight-knitted community or because you get to interact much more with professors.

    Cheaper college experience? I doubt it - if you're looking at the US. You can always check, but then again, good education doesn't really come cheap. You might want to consider Australia (but I would advise against it).

    Are you enrolling in university in Fall or are you still in JC/high school?
  • ElorielEloriel Registered User Posts: 345 Member
    Not everyone wants to go to grad school, lonelyheartsclub. So in that sense, a large and prestigious school like Berkeley offers you great academics, the quintessential college experience, a good degree and lots of life experience. Why not?

    And there's no "equivalent LAC" simply because you CANNOT compare public schools and LACs; they are inherently different. I agree that private schools will give you an easier time, but they're only worth attending if it's HYPSM or similar. Also, your mentality seemingly favours the "free and easy" route, which in my opinion is relaxing and all but does not give you the experience and tenacity to do well in the future. You can't just keep coasting through college expecting things to be handed to you on a silver platter/the school to value you and pamper you. Those who work hard and are determined succeed, and college is a good time to prime these people for success.

    In any case, you are not qualified to comment on Berkeley unless you actually attend the school (because it's a personal experience, and you can't take the words of your friends/family members for it; who knows, you might thrive in such an environment...?) I have had a great experience here so far.
  • agnstalodzagnstalodz Registered User Posts: 13 New Member
    Hi rosewood, I'm a Singaporean student here at the UW and now in the first quarter of my senior year! writtenonthebody has made some really good points, but I'd just like to add my two cents worth.

    I'm a humanities major, so I can't offer a lot of insight on your intended majors, but I know we have pretty good environmentally-related departments like forestry sciences, fisheries, and probably geology as well. As a research school, I am beginning to see UW come up more in the news now especially in the fields of medicine and the sciences (I can find the articles for you if you're interested!). There is no doubt that the UW has a fantastic graduate department.

    It is true that the UW is a very big school, and that costs are rising. But for its ranking, it is very competitively priced. We are #25 in the world in the Times higher education rankings (http://www.timeshighereducation.co.uk/world-university-rankings/2011-2012/top-400.html) and our tuition is under $30k/year. Comparatively, Northwestern University is ranked #26 and their tuition is $42k/year. The main reason for the rising costs of tuition is that the U.S. government is cutting state funding, an issue that students and professors are currently voicing out about.

    The teacher-student ratio is undesirable, for sure, but part of the university experience is making the effort to let your professors know who you are. Profs always have office hours, and it is your job as a student to go in and have your questions answered. More often than not, they will be happy to schedule extra appointments with you if needed.

    The university experience at the UW is great. People here are so friendly, we have quite a big Greek life (though nothing compares to that at UIUC), and the school is ohmygoodnessjustsodamnbeautiful. HAVE YOU SEEN PICTURES OF OUR SUZZALLO LIBRARY???? The architecture of the buildings is just drop dead gorgeous, and there's so much greenery all around. The cherry blossoms are in full bloom right now, and they are just amazing. There are also so many activities that are constantly going on in the school that make it exciting to be here. When (if?) you arrive in the Fall, you will also get to enjoy a brand new Student Centre that is currently still under construction, which will make the school even more lively than it already is.

    UW and UO are huge sports rivals, but in my opinion I think UW is a better all rounded school. We lose to UO a lot especially in football, but in terms of academics I think we definitely have the upper hand.

    AND LASTLY (I will end my novel soon), Seattle definitely beats Eureka, HANDS DOWN. There's so much to do in Seattle. Snowboarding/skiing in the winter, hiking/kayaking in the spring and summer.. and Vancouver, BC is a short drive away as is Portland, if you want a quick weekend getaway.

    I hope you do end up coming to the UW! Don't hesitate to PM me if you have any questions. Here is our fb groups page too if you want to post anything there [url=http://www.****/groups/uwssa/]Log In | Facebook[/url]
  • lonelyheartsclublonelyheartsclub Registered User Posts: 52 Junior Member
    @Eloriel:By equivalent I mean nothing more than selectivity - of course LACs and State Universities are different, they're practically polar opposites! Assuming a student is a match for Berkeley, then the top LACs are more or less within reach, given the tweaking of a few capricious variables. I'm glad that you're doing well at Berkeley, but I'm adamant that for the majority of students learning under the umbrella of a LAC support system will go much further in unlocking their potential.

    Not to mention that it is churlish - and ridiculous - to believe that going to a LAC somehow indicates an aversion to hard work. The academic rigor at any top LAC more than matches that of any state school. Student counseling, career advice, professor tutorship much more accessible - but in what realm does someone consider those flaws? You as a student can do away with the boring, enervating chores and then channel your energy to someplace better, volunteer, do - rather than spend more time seeking - internships, or heck just immerse yourself in subjects you really love. LAC students don't just loaf and bask under the glory of a collegial automaton and have degrees served up a plate you know.

    I'm not sure why you distinguish private and public universities when comparing them to HYPSM; surely it matters not a jot? There're plenty of private schools that don't hold the smallest candle in comparison to HYPSM - but let's not pretend that's not true for public schools as well. I can certainly name more private schools in league with HYPSM than is true for their public counterparts.

    I don't mean to offend by offering the example of Berkeley, but it is the poster child of state schools, thus an easy exemplar at that. Cheers.
  • Rosewood24Rosewood24 Registered User Posts: 30 New Member
    Writtenonthebody, I'll be applying for the Fall of 2013. You're definitely right that there isn't much use for me to return to Singapore with the kind of degree I'm pursuing and rightly so, as i do plan to subsequently remain in the US.

    I've actually done quite a bit of research on UW, especially their Geophysics program and
    I have to admit that they have one of the most impressive programs. In the process I have also discovered their support system in FIUTs as well as the Undergraduate Research Program(URP). The encouraging environment in which they allow undergraduates to take part in research is a very important factor and what I actually consider UW strongest attraction.

    College is indeed what you make of it and this has been repeated countless times to me so what you said just reinforces that.

    I guess the reason why I'm asking these questions is due to my insecurity as while UW is a really great school, I sometimes wonder if I was missing out on something better.

    agnstalodz, nice to see a fellow Singaporean at the UW! You said that the cost of tuition at UW is around 30k/year, but isn't it closer to somewhere around $40k/year? Could be wrong but I'm sure that what I've seen so far. In addition to the state cutting funding that results in higher tuition fees, 30k/year seems a bit too cheap.

    All the things you said about UW and Seattle has got me really excited as I am probably gonna take a trip around Dec this year to Seattle for a visit and maybe visit both UW and UO.

    BTW, do you happen to know of any Singaporean Geophysics/Physics Undergraduates or even just any student who is currently doing a similar degree? I would really love to get in touch with them.
  • writtenonthebodywrittenonthebody Registered User Posts: 68 Junior Member
    rosewood, I'm glad you see it that way. I'm also very impressed with their programs in other subjects (I've been exploring various majors). Would be awesome if you come to UW :-D! agnstalodz just got in touch with me and she's answering some of the questions I have on the school as well (like housing). While it would probably be best to wait for her answer to your question regarding cost since she IS a student there, from what I've read, tuition at UW is about 30k a year. Add in living costs and other expenses, and it'll total up to about 45k per year.

    Eh, Seattle isn't the best place to visit during Winter but let us know if you're visiting!
This discussion has been closed.