Okay everyone so I’m attempting to choose between these three options. I’m an international student coming from the UK.
I should also mention that I am British Asian (of Indian descent)
UVA Jefferson Scholarship is a full ride plus perks such as foreign travel, spending money, internships and leading opportunities. This is therefore definitely the cheapest option.
I’m honestly leaning towards Harvard or Stanford at the moment so mainly looking for perspectives on those two. Harvard is offering better financial aid than Stanford.
I’m hoping to major in philosophy or political science and then go into either journalism, politics or entrepreneurship in the future.
I’m an extrovert and I like to party but I also enjoy having fascinating conversations about everything and anything with diverse groups of incredible people. I don’t think I’d want to be in a finals club or fraternity but I definitely want to be able to party, dance etc.
In terms of ECs I’m very into the performing arts (theatre specifically), dance, debating, charity work and fine (visual) art. I'd be looking for a vibrant scene in these areas.
Concerns right now are the apparently cutthroat atmosphere at Harvard, greek life/segregation and lack of diversity at UVA, and the dominant techie feel at Stanford. (I love interdisciplinary learning, particularly in areas of ethics and politics, and perhaps Harvard has a more intellectual/humanities discussion type feel around campus?)
Please help give me any advice you can offer. The weather, beach and laid-back nature of the West Coast is definitely a plus but I’m trying to not let that be a deciding factor because it's easy to go based on stereotypes of Harvard being cutthroat, competitive and socially inactive (this can't be true with so many students and other colleges in Boston surely?!).
Sports aren’t huge for me but I’m definitely into fitness. I do like debating/discussing politics, philosophy and the world at 3 or 4 in the morning but I also like to enjoy life as a normal teenager.
I’m looking for open-minded, ambitious, collaborative, fun people and a place where I can work hard, play hard, and party hard while having an amazing 4 years with people that will open up my mind and inspire me in so many different ways.
Thanks in advance for all your help — I count myself very lucky and fortunate to be in this position!
Please let me know anything you can!