Brandeis or Penn State?

<p>So, I got accepted into Brandeis for transfer, and I am wondering whether I should go. I go to Penn State, the main campus. I don't really mind not having a "party" atmosphere, but will going to Brandeis help me in the long run?</p>

<p>What are you academically/socially interested in and why did you apply to transfer?</p>

<p>You'll need to judge for yourself whether Brandeis is the right fit for you. As for education, there really is no comparison between Brandeis and Penn State.
Penn State is a good but very large state school--around 45000 on its main campus versus 5000 for Brandeis. At Brandeis, you will have dramatically smaller class sizes and classes taught by professors, not TAs. Brandeis has all of the elements of a small liberal arts college, but set in a research environment. Undergraduate teaching is the main focus of the faculty, not research. In contrast, if your main interest is big-time athletics and partying, then Penn State should be your choice. But if heryour focus is academics, class size, quality of teaching, then Brandeis is the clear choice</p>

<p>Brandeis is truly an amazing school. It's a special combination of small liberal arts college and world-class research university-with the smallest student body I believe (around 800 in a class) of any top tier national research university matched with high-powered professors who actually teach in small classes. So, the research opportunities are tremendous. </p>

<p>Brandeis's intellectual environment is comparable in many ways to its University Athletic Association sister school, U Chicago (perhaps no coincidence that the President of U Chicago is a Brandeis alum). Yet its students are down-to-earth, friendly and non-competitive with one another. With respect to success rates in admissions to the best graduate schools, including med school , it would be hard to beat Brandeis. Plus it's located just outside of Boston, the world's greatest college town, but on its own suburban campus.--really the best of both worlds.</p>

<p>If you haven't seen it, you should watch the interview on the Brandeis website with Greg Petsko, Professor of Biochem, who left MIT to come to Brandeis. He discusses his reasons as to why he found Brandeis to be, in his words, "a better place" to teach and for his students to learn. Here's a link to the "video tour" page which you may need to paste into your browser: [url=<a href="http://www.brandeis.edu/admissions/videotour/%5DTour%5B/url"&gt;http://www.brandeis.edu/admissions/videotour/]Tour[/url&lt;/a&gt;]. Then, you may need to click through to the 'Meet Brandeisians" faculty interviews to find Petsko. </p>

<p>Further on the subject of whether Brandeis is the right fit for you, I believe the kind of person who would feel comfortable at Brandeis is an intellectual and/or creative sort who is friendly and comfortable with himself or herself and not competitive or pretentious. Intellectual but down-to-earth and friendly I think is an apt description of the student body. Unlike some preppy place or frat-oriented environments where social interraction is based on the "exclusivity" of the frat system, Brandeis has a welcoming, relatively-nonjudgmental environment--yet there are some off-campus frats for those who like what they have to offer. There is no pressure to party, but parties are there if you want them. Often social interaction centers around the numerous clubs and other terrific extracuriculars like theater and music. </p>

<p>You ask whether going to Brandeis will help you in the long run. I can only say that the combination of high caliber peer group and nuturing academic experience certainly can make a difference and have produced some very exciting and successful alumni. To name just a few: Nobel Prize winner for chemistry Rod Mackinnon, Fields Medal winning physicist Edward Witten (often called "Einstein's successor"), 3-time Pulitzer Prize winner Tom Friedman of the NY Times, The Earth is Flat etc; Mitch Albom of Tuesday's with Morrie (about his Brandeis professor), the Creators/Producers of Friends; actress Debra Messing; Robert FX Sillerman (billionaire businessman--currently owner of American Idol and Graceland), Jeff Lurie, billionaire owner of the Philadelphia Eagles and Christy Hefner, former CEO of Playboy. Also, if you're into social justice (Angela Davis and Abbie Hoffman are alums as well, I could go on) or theater/music/art, it's a very exciting place to be.</p>

<p>Forgive my enthusiasm, but as a Brandeis alum, I loved it! Good luck with your decision!</p>

<p>If you don't know what you are doing, you should def go to Brandeis. Since it is a liberal arts college, you should have a better understanding of what major you would choose, and what you like and what you don't like</p>

<p>You will probably find more opportunities attending Brandeis than Penn State. If money isn't an issue and you don't feel obligated to stay at Penn State it would be a good idea to transfer to Brandeis (assuming it is an acceptable fit).</p>