<p>I have been searching for colleges that I would enjoy (I'm a junior this year). I love Swarthmore, and am planning on applying early decision, but I would like to lengthen my list of schools to consider. So, about me:</p>
<p>-I want to major in something science and math related.
-I have a 5.44 (soon to be 5.88) weighted gpa, and a 4.oo unweighted.
-I have ok test scores (1500 plus 660 on writing, I am going to take it again, I will most likely be national merit, math II subject is 800, I'm taking chem subject soon).<br>
-I have decent extracurriculars (math competition team, astronomy, youth in government, violin, and a number of board positions).
-I want a small, co-ed, accepting, academically challenging, but fun school.
-I would like to go to a school that is not too big on partying.</p>
<p>Thanks, y'all. I really appreciate any advice on this.</p>
<p>Small would be perhaps 5,000, counting both undergrad and graduate students? My high school is just over 2,000, and I wouldn't mind a college in the same range as that. Mainly, I want a college that gives individual attention, and one where the professors would be willing and able to take time out of their day to talk with me.</p>
<p>kriketdaughter - In a shameless pitch for Bates, I'll just pass on my S's experience there this past fall. He was a Visiting Student due to Katrina. His classes were small. He was really able to get to know the profs. One became his key recommender for transfers (because Tulane is phasing out Engineering). This full professor really took a personal interest. The students, faculty administration were so welcoming. It's in the 2000+- range. Very nice campus.</p>
<p>While D1 waited until almost May 1 of her senior year to decide on a college, D2 seems to have decided in her junior year. We visited Swarthmore during spring break along with several other mostly northeastern schools. The urban setting of the others (Penn, CMU, Case Western, MIT, Tufts) was a drawback. I'm pushing her to consider other options & appreciate all your suggestions.</p>
<p>Bucknell and Union are both small schools with engineering majors. My neighbor raduated from Bucknell and is now starting a paleontology PhD program at Penn.
Haverford is close to Swarthmore with a rep for academic challenge and fun, nice students.</p>
<p>A lot of the things you described sound like Carleton to me. My son just decided to go to Carleton. He views it as very academic but not too serious about itself and fun. Go to their website and listen to their student radio station. Get some of their podcasts, it will give you a flavor of the place. S is interested in math/computer science and Carleton's seems to have strength in that area among LACs. He looked at Carnegie Mellon for CS so I am not much help on other fun LACs. Good luck. Good job getting started early, it is a big job. Visit as many as you can.</p>
<p>You mentioned astronomy as an extra-curricular. We researched schools with that major when my S was looking. If that might be something you want to concentrate on, some LACs with good programs besides Swarthmore are Carleton, Wesleyan (they have a grad program there, too, so lots of research opportunities), Haverford, Colgate, and Franklin and Marshall.</p>
<p>Your idea of small (5,000) would be other people's idea of mid-sized. Small tends to be 1,600 as with Bates of Bowdoin. Haverford is smaller still, with about 1,300 students. Wesleyan has 2,600, Rice has 2,800. </p>
<p>There are many terrific LACs with fewer than 2,000 students. Would you be comfortable attending or would you prefer a college that is larger than your school? I strongly recommend looking at both Wesleyan and Rice.</p>
<p>Not sure where the Engineering major element came in here, but if it is a factor, I would suggest you consider: (if you don't want to be in a city; or want a self-contained campus within a city)- Lafayette and Lehigh in Pa., Villanova in Philadelphia, Trinity in Ct..</p>