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New Paltz vs Binghamton

EmpEmp 961 replies50 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
edited February 2009 in SUNY - General
I've gotten into both the SUNYs listed above and haven't gotten the chance to visit either one yet. Although I will see both Bing and NP in April, I wanted to get a few opinions, which one would be better for an IR/history major, how do the social and academic atmospheres differ...anything to give me an idea!

thanks in advance.
edited February 2009
57 replies
Post edited by Emp on
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Replies to: New Paltz vs Binghamton

  • LilyMoonLilyMoon 1762 replies70 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    My son is transferring to New Paltz this semester and knows a lot of people at Bing. Bing has the better reputation as far as academics go. It all depends what's important to you in a school. From what I see of my son's friends, the kids who are more driven academically definitely choose Bing. They are a more competitive bunch and possibly more mainstream type kids. New Paltz attracts a more creative bunch, laid back and liberal. Probably more accepting of alternative lifestyles.

    Bing is very rural, not much around there and far removed from city life. New Paltz has a hippyish and offbeat sort of town and is near Poughkeepsie, a big hub. It's an hour and a half from NYC.

    Visiting them both will give you a good idea which one is right for you.
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  • LongeyeMomLongeyeMom 163 replies6 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    My son has applied to both also, and we have visited both. We have not heard from either. Although he has the stats for Binghamton( 98.14, 1350) he thinks he would prefer NP. They have a smaller student body and the town is walking distance from the campus. The surrounding area is beautiful. He does have a more creative personality leaning towards the arts. There is an Honors Program. New Paltz has a rising profile in the SUNY family.
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  • iamhereiamhere 476 replies41 threadsRegistered User Member
    binghamton is not rural.. geneseo is rural.
    the city of binghamton itself it a city -- granted, much smaller than NYC, but a city.
    the campus is located in the suburb of vestal which is a very typical suburb with every fast food restaurant and chain store you can imagine.
    there is a lot of green around campus and the view is great -- but it just isn't "rural.
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  • Muffy333Muffy333 2080 replies28 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    I guess you're OOS...It really is a big deal to get into Binghamton in-state; New Paltz has its charms and may be the best place for many people, but if you want to work in NYC after college, Bing will be much more impressive on your resume.
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  • lsd87lsd87 223 replies23 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    The schools are quite different.

    New Paltz is a smaller school, has a better student/teacher ratio, is in a better community, has in excess of 60% women, and has a reputation for challenging authority. History is a popular major and New Paltz itself is a historic community with beautiful stone houses, the hugenot society, and the FDR presidential library nearby in Hyde Park. They have a wonderful language program and a international business program.

    Binghamton has better a rating in US News, Fiske, and others. It is a larger school with a small feel. Although admissions isn't really more competetive as a percentage of applicants, Binghamton does have higher GPA and SAT/ACT statistics. Binghamton does have housing issues, as their popularity and freshman yield has increased.

    There are many more comparisons, however both schools are great. Its difficult to know where you will fit in better. By all means look at the meal plans, dorms, school newspapers, and speak with those departments you are interested in.

    Good luck!
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  • sean256sean256 398 replies21 threadsRegistered User Member
    My GC told me to consider New Paltz because it is a "sleeper" SUNY school according to her. I am unfamiliar with it and I will definitely visit it before applying because I am a firm believer in only applying to a school which you have visited and see yourself attending. I expressed to her what I liked in a college campus which are evident in my top choices (Bing and Geneseo) although my SAT score puts me at a disadvantage for both schools so she urged me to consider New Paltz. I have a few questions and any help would be appreciated :)

    -I have heard that the Geneseo and New Paltz campuses are fairly similar (size, architecture,etc.) Can anyone expand on this a little bit?
    -Biology major? Is NP geared more towards arts?
    -BIG QUESTION: I have nothing against long islanders, but someone told me that the ratio of long islanders to the rest (upstate-where I am from plus OOS) is really out of whack. No one in the past 3 years has chosen to go to NP from my school according to GC

    Thanks!
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  • iamhereiamhere 476 replies41 threadsRegistered User Member
    geneseo and np's campuses are similar in the sense that the schools are about the same size and they have that traditional red brick suny look.

    geneseo's is very characterized by the fact that it is on a hill -- at a number of buildings the entrance on one side of a building may be the first floor and the entrance on the other side on the second floor because its on a hill. also gives an incredible view.

    new paltz's campus felt a little more spread out -- maybe that's just because its flatter -- i don't know how they compare in actual size. new paltz has a pond on the campus -- very pretty -- had ducks or geese -- don't recall which. again - very pretty -- but may mean you have to watch where you walk ;).

    here is info about the geogr breakdown at both schools --
    http://www.newpaltz.edu/oir/factbook2006.pdf
    https://www.geneseo.edu/isu/cms_pdf/iresearch/Geographic_Origin_by_Region.pdf
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  • sean256sean256 398 replies21 threadsRegistered User Member
    Thanks for the info iamhere! It just seems strange that I have never really heard of anyone who actually went to NP and my school only had two people apply last year and both ended up going elsewhere. It looks nice from pics and seems like it has a strong liberal arts foundation. Could it be possible that its harder for upstate kids to fit in due to the large amt. of long islanders and attendees from its surrounding counties? I mean 46% of the kids there are from the Hudson valley which if I am not mistaken is like the 5 counties surrounding NP.
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  • iamhereiamhere 476 replies41 threadsRegistered User Member
    the best thing for you to do would probably be to visit - and hang out in the dining hall and maybe the library and just see how the feel of the place is for you. if there are any clubs or groups you think you'd be interested in, try contacting them -- may give you a chance to talk to someone with similar interests who can help you get a feel for the place.
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  • Muffy333Muffy333 2080 replies28 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Downstate peoples are just like anyone else...except I see a lot more upstaters freaking out on these boards about being trapped with Long Islanders and such than I see downstaters freaking out about kids from Buffalo or Rochester. We don't all talk like Fran Drescher...
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  • sean256sean256 398 replies21 threadsRegistered User Member
    It has nothing to do with the way you talk, act, etc., but simply fitting in. As I said earlier 46% of NP's student body is from the surrounding area. It seems it could be a little difficult to find one's niche. That's all. I am definitely going down to visit in the next week or so. Does anyone know how the pre-med program is? Someone told me that it was certainly on the rise as well as NP as a whole. This person also told me that she wouldn't be surprised in NP became highly selective over the next 4-5 years.
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  • Muffy333Muffy333 2080 replies28 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Is the 46% based on where they come from? Ulster County is very rural; I doubt that many students went to high school near New Paltz. A lot are from greater NYC area, but it is at least two hours drive to Manhattan and more to Long Island. When I visited the campus with my daughter, I thought it had a very impressively diverse student body. You absolutely won't be able to say "only XXXX kind of people go here"
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  • iamhereiamhere 476 replies41 threadsRegistered User Member
    binghamton and geneseo clearly have the rep as being the most selective sunys. for people who don't want one of the large university centers (ie, Stony brook, albany or buffalo), i think NP is likely to grow in popularity as the next choice suny college -- just in the last few years, more and more people seem to be talking about it. especially if things continue as they have been with the economy and more and more people looking at the sunys, i do think NP will benefit in reputation. binghamton and geneseo get more selective each year -- I think NP will benefit from the "trickle down."

    but you definitely need to visit to see how the feel of the place is for you.

    have you seen this info? State University of New York at New Paltz: Pre-Health Career Advisory - Pre-Doctor (7year med program)
    State University of New York at New Paltz: Pre-Health Career Advisory - Frequently Asked Question (how NP did in med school applications)
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  • sean256sean256 398 replies21 threadsRegistered User Member
    Hudson Valley 2,702 46.2% 2540 46.3%

    That is the information that the fact book gives. I think the Hudson valley includes the surrounding 4 or so counties.

    The pre=health program doesn't sound too bad. My dilemma is this:
    -I am not counting on Bing or Geneseo to accept me as a student. (first choices)
    -My ultimate goal is to attend medical school where I will incur a lot of debt and for this reason I want to limit myself to mostly SUNY schools so I can get my undergrad practically free (parents will pay for suny school tuition/board/ect.) I am responsible for med.school.
    -UB is decent but for some reason my heart tells me that I will make a mistake by attending even though I tell myself "I'll go to UB if I don't get in to Bing or Geneseo" aka I dont like it as much as I think
    -Cortland worries me because they have no "formal" pre-health advisory commmittee. I'm sure I could work extra hard to ensure I will be prepared for MCATS and all the necessary prep for med. school but not a chance I want to take unless I really have to.
    -I hated Albany.

    Anyways, so NP seems decent. I will visit and see what its like. I know absolutely no one that goes there so I can't even ask their opinion. Can anyone comment on the drug usage?? Is it normal for a school (cause thats not such a big deal)? Or what?
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  • iamhereiamhere 476 replies41 threadsRegistered User Member
    when you go, see if you can meet with the pre-med advisor.
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  • Muffy333Muffy333 2080 replies28 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    If you ask alums of my generation about drug use at New Paltz, they will have some really interesting stories ( I did not attend but have friends who did)!!!! But every college will have substance abusers; what is significant is that New Paltz has in the last few years been attracting applicants who worked hard in high school and realize that academics are important and they aren't paying for a four year psychedelic trip! There are a lot of faculty who love it because New Paltz is a very attractive place to reside.
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  • northeastmomnortheastmom 11939 replies440 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Muffy, as far as NP, after freshman or sophomore year, do you need to live off campus? Does off campus housing require a car?
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  • Muffy333Muffy333 2080 replies28 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    You can live off campus; there's a link on the website to off campus housing. It depends on what you want to pay and what's available and how much you like to walk/bike. Right now transfers do not get housing.
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  • northeastmomnortheastmom 11939 replies440 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    muffy thanks. Do most juniors and seniors move off campus? Is it usually then practical to have a car? How about sophomores? Can you live on campus for all 4 years if you wanted to?
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  • Muffy333Muffy333 2080 replies28 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    northeast mom, if you haven't been, go to the SUNY New Paltz main facebook page; you can get to it by clicking admissions...they have a lot of great info there from real students however your kid should be the one logging on to ask anything, not cool for mom to :-)
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