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Tufts or Stanford?

famouslastwordsfamouslastwords Registered User Posts: 3 New Member
edited April 2013 in Stanford University
After coming back from Stanford admit weekend, I'm in a bit of a bind. Loved Palo Alto, and the campus was beautiful, but as a very liberal potential Women's Studies/IR Major, I'm feeling a bit out of place. Almost everyone I met was a engineering/economics major, and I've heard from former IR students that the department is VERY conservative (perhaps due to the influence of the Hoover Institute).

Ultimately, I can either attend Tufts, which has perhaps the best IR program nationwide, or Stanford, which is magnitudes more prestigious but a little too conservative for my tastes. I guess Penn is an option, but considering that I live a 20 minute walk from the campus, I don't think I actually want to go there. Thoughts?
Post edited by famouslastwords on

Replies to: Tufts or Stanford?

  • texaspgtexaspg Forum Champion Pre-Med & Medical Posts: 16,678 Forum Champion
    Women's studies and conservative - they never ever go together.

    Hoover Institute does not participate in Academics at Stanford. One has to go participate in Hoover Institute. Since Condoleeza Rice is the most well known IR person on campus, I would not dispute there might be some conservative bend to the program. However, it is an interdisciplinary major at Stanford which means you will be taking classes in various disciplines as opposed to one specific department. Have you checked out the requirements? You need classes in Poli Sci, Economics, statistics, and history.

    Major Declaration - New Requirements | Program in International Relations

    http://internationalrelations.stanford.edu/sites/internationalrelations.stanford.edu/files/IR%20Course%20Proposal_new_req_0.pdf

    People change their focus all the time when they go to Stanford. They take one class in a subject and find that that is what they have been destined to do. Every program at Stanford is strong if you change your mind.
  • AustroHungarianAustroHungarian Registered User Posts: 346 Member
    Where I stayed for admit weekend, 4 out of ~15 profros said they wanted to do IR.
  • WendeliWendeli Registered User Posts: 220 Junior Member
    Stanford is more conservative than some other campuses, but on the whole they're still very liberal as universities tend to be. I always thought Georgetown had the best IR program, but I'm not an IR major so I really can't give any input into that aspect. On the other hand to address the engineering/econ concern, yes Stanford is known for Silicon Valley and therefore a strong science department but they have ridiculously good humanities as well. While you may feel set on a humanities major, having a university strong in all fields is a good safety net. Who knows CS 106A might just convert you to a CS major. Both schools are great though, so don't sweat about making a wrong decision :)
This discussion has been closed.