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NSLI Y Korea vs SCS Noonan Scholars

PokeGamerMPokeGamerM Registered User Posts: 28 Junior Member
Hello. I know Inposted a similar question earlier, but I now know that I got accepted to both programs and have more information. I can’t do both programs and have to decide by April 5th. Here are some pro and cons for each program. I’d love to hear your opinions and comments.

SCS Noonan Scholars
+ 6 year program (2 summer in high school and 4 years of college mentor ship)
+ 1st summer is 6 weeks at Amherst College (College Writing and Calculus, but no credit)
+ 2nd summer is 6 weeks at USC (Advanced College Writing and Computer Science, but no credit)
+ The summer academies offer help with filling out applications, resumes, test prep, and college counseling (not sure what that entails or how good it is)
+ There is also a portion of the program dedicated to touring schools (Harvard, Yale, MIT, BC, Tufts...). This is very beneficial because otherwise I would never have the opportunity to visit these schools
+ There a free laptop
+ I get a $500 stipend for the first two years and a $1000 every year of college (This can help me pay for college applications and SAT tests)
+ There is mentorship in college to help with picking classes and finding internships (I don’t really know how good or frequent this help is)
+ Pretty selective program (I read an article that stated 10% admit rate of 1,000 applicants)
- Location wise Ahmherst is pretty bland (We will see other cities though)
- The program is relatively small and has not as much publicity (mostly because it recently merged and nationalized)
- I’m scared the classes offered will be rough and dull (there is no official grades though)
- The program doesn’t rely fit my overall interests (aside from college help)

NSLI Y Korea Summer
+ 1 Summer (7weeks)
+ Program is in Seoul, South Korea at Ehwa Women’s University (Seoul is the best program location in my opinion and it has always been a dream to visit)
+ The program focuses on learning to speak Korean and taking daily Korean classes, but also not for credit (I have always wanted to learn Korean)
+ I get to live with a host family and participate in various cultural events and trips
+ The Program is sponsored by the Department of State (I want to work in politics and in the Department of State in the future)
+ Most kids get to Intermediate level Korean
+ I feel like this program will be more fun becuase it closely aligns with my interests
+ Pretty Selective Program (16% Admit Rate from around 3,000 applicants. The Program is more well known and national in my opinion)
+ This program is definetly something I could write about in a college application essay because it aligns with my interest in international politics and world cultures.
+ There is so much to explore and try in South Korea
- The program is definetly shorter (I can also apply for a 9 month gap year in South Korea next year)
- The program does not offer that many benefits
- Aside from potential essay writing material, the program doesn’t offer much help in terms of College applications
- I would not get to visit many colleges (Aside from Korean universities if I decide to apply to a foreign university)

Replies to: NSLI Y Korea vs SCS Noonan Scholars

  • RednibRednib Registered User Posts: 13 New Member
    Congratulations on your acceptances! I am a NSLI-Y alum of the 2018 summer program in Morocco. I was able to advance my language skills and connect with a really amazing community through NSLI-Y, and I'll never not recommend it!

    To me, it sounds like your decision probably depends on your financial situation - if the laptop, stipend, and college visits are important rather than just nice, SCS Noonan Scholars is probably the best option. From what I know about the program, it sounds like it fosters a great community and could help you with college down the road. I would recommend getting in touch with an alumni member of the SCS Noonan Scholars program to ask about classes and the quality of the mentorship because they are your biggest unknowns right now.

    That being said, you seem more excited about NSLI-Y (and I know from my program that it is both a lot of fun and a life changing experience). Would it be possible to join SCS Noonan Scholars, turn down NSLI-Y for this summer, and then apply for NSLI-Y AY next year?

    Good luck with your decision! You can't go wrong with either program.