Bucknell or MHC?

<p>I got into MHC and Bucknell and the programs for what I want to study have the same number of instructors, all highly educated. </p>

<p>I'm mostly struggling with the all-girl and LBGS (sorry for misquote in advance) aspect MHC. I AM slightly uncomfortable with the lesbian culture and I am also slightly conservative with some social issues. Furthermore, i'm politically active. I'm afraid I will not be able to be as understanding or accepting about the lgst issue. </p>

<p>So my dilemma is that I'm wanting to do the best for myself, and my future and I MAY have more opportunities at MHC but if I'm not comfortable, I won't make the best of it. But I can't tell if i'm comfortable from a small visit. I did get the vibe that everyone was a little eccentric though. </p>

<p>Bucknell on the other hand has much higher graduate school entrance stats into top grad schools from what I read. But then again, there is nothing open past 8am. I remember sitting in my hotel room thinking "wow, I cannot live here." At MHC at least I am only approximately 1.5 hours from Boston! Maybe I should have spent more time at Bucknell, but I don't know. </p>

<p>I've visited both and they are just so very different. </p>

<p>I keep coming back to my main goals of wanting to study at UMASS and Amherst, as well as going to Washington or abroad for a semester which I can only specifically find details about doing that on MHC's website. Conversely MHC doesn't even list Fullbright on their website and in my small dealings with them so far, i've felt like it hasn't been as smooth to do things as they had alluded to at first. On the Bucknell website, fullbright is the first thing on Bucknells and it's something I would really like to do. Is it worth going to MHC just for the 5 college consortium, slightly higher ranting, potential for better study abroad(if I qualify and can get in) or not? </p>

<p>Furthermore MHC is ranked slightly higher (which isn't my biggest priority, because that changes depending on who has documented the ratings). </p>

<p>I grew up in a small conservative town, but I absolutely LOVE racial and lifestyle(people from different places, with extraordinary life stories and/or crappy situations they were able to overcome)</p>

<p>MHC is a little smaller than Bucknell and I think I would be happier in a place a little bigger, but it's so hard to tell from a visit. I like country music, drive a Lexus, and grew up in France but I hate snobs, and unfriendly people. I've heard Bucknell is friendly and a little fake whereas MHC is more serious and non-social. But, of course not having studied there, this is all speculation. I'm interested in being challenged academically but I also really like to let loose and I have heard the MHC has basically no drinking on campus whereas Bucknell is known for being more of a party school. I'm bubbly, get along with everyone and try not to judge. Do you think I'll fit in at MHC or Bucknell better? </p>

<p>Help!</p>

<p>Hi Wants2Thrive! How are you? This is icesk8mom's daughter and I am a graduating senior at Mount Holyoke College. When I was first starting my college application process, I ruled out women's colleges for a similar reason - I was worried about the lack of male interaction that I might experience as a women's college student. A local women's college held a seminar about how to write the perfect college essay and at the seminar, I realized my misconception about women's college. Let me try to respond to your concerns regarding MHC one at a time:</p>

<p>1) The Mount Holyoke Community: </p>

<p>Mount Holyoke is a diverse community - not just in terms of sexual identity but also race, religion, nationality, interests, etc. Just like any of these other groups, the LGBTQ community is not threatening in any way, shape, or form. It is perhaps the diversity of the student body that leaves some people to see the eccentricities on campus. The beauty of the school is that it promotes mutual respect though the various types of diversity that everyone brings to campus. Everyone at MHC can find a group of friends that will make them feel supported through the undergraduate journey in residential life, clubs, academics, and MHC traditions. One example of a bonding moment in my dorm was when the most of the residents got together during M&Cs to watch “Glee.” </p>

<p>Just because MHC is a women's college does not mean that all political activism that happens on campus is related to gender issues. Political student organizations such as the College Democrats, College Republicans, and the Roosevelt Institute and students organizations such as Model UN and Debate, which use politics in their club missions, draw inspiration from a variety of issues and gain legitimacy within the student body, the 5 college community, and the "real world" because they are attuned to the current political landscape - the recent SCOTUS nominations, the economic crisis, etc.</p>

<p>Mount Holyoke women are serious about their academics and about making time to have fun. What attracted me to the college was the balance that I saw between social and academic life and this is something that I have greatly enjoyed as a student. </p>

<p>2) Life in South Hadley and the 5-College Consortium:</p>

<p>There are no two ways around it – South Hadley is small. However, travel within the 5-college area and the pioneer valley is greatly facilitated by the PVTA Bus System which is free for all students. I do not have a car and was able to take classes at UMass and Amherst College without an issue – it just required planning. The 5-Colleges not only serve as a way to take classes off campus, but there are many social events that happen through the 5 colleges that bring a lot of cultural opportunities to the area. The UMass Fine Arts Center and Mullins Center have a great selection of shows. There are 5-college clubs, opportunities to join dance teams, orchestras, etc. All 5 College parties are open to college students at any of the consortium colleges and are a great way to meet new friends. If you do not feel like leaving campus, there is always something to do WAY past 8pm!!! (and I am not talking about homework). We are not an ultra-party campus (UMass Frat parties for example) but neither are we a dry campus. </p>

<p>If you are looking for a list of Mount Holyoke students who have received Fullbrights and other national fellowships, look no further than the CDC’s (Career Development Center’s) web page. Award</a> Winners :: Career Development Center :: Mount Holyoke College I can only tell you about the graduate school admissions among my friends: Harvard (2), McGill, Notre Dame, and UNC Chapel Hill to name a few. If you want more information about these statistics, the admissions office would be glad to provide you with them! </p>

<p>3) Study Abroad:</p>

<p>I am a huge advocate of study abroad. Mount Holyoke offers two main routes to study abroad. These opportunities are approved through a merit-based application process that is carried out by a faculty committee in which the student must demonstrate the how the experience will benefit her academic career at MHC.
The first is through the International Internship Program. This program provides sophomores and juniors with the chance to intern abroad with direct funding from the McCulloch Center for Global Initiatives (Mount</a> Holyoke College :: McCulloch Center for Global Initiatives) for all costs related directly to the internship (housing, travel, food, etc). The second way is through year or semester-long programs. Mount Holyoke has a variety of in-house programs but also encourages its students to attend other programs. I studied abroad in Ecuador and have had internships in Spain and Chile. </p>

<p>Most of my friends studied abroad and found that the college embraced their personal, academic, and linguistic growth from the experience. They went to: France, Italy, Brazil, Chile, China, Japan, Australia, Argentina, Costa Rica, Israel, Spain, England, Ireland, Scotland, Poland, the Czech Republic, the Dominican Republic etc.</p>

<p>Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions. I am more than happy to answer them.</p>

<p>Icesk8mom’s daughter</p>

<p>I wonder if Wants2Thrive is a legitimate posting in view of what negatives (lesbian bashing and all women's school = all lesbians) are expressed about MHC, especially in view of the fact that as of the date of the posting, May 10, the deadline for responding to acceptances expired 9 days earlier (thus certainly an alleged MHC acceptance of the poster has expired and there is no decision by the poster to make anymore) and MHC has not yet begun accepting from its wait list. Also, this Wants2Thrive posting is only "her" third post. Usually, for such an inquisitive and long post on CC, it is preceeded by dozens of posts on a number of college boards. I suspect that this is the repeat poster (with a new nom deplume) who surfaces every so often to bash the all-women's colleges along a similar theme.</p>

<p>Wow Icesk8moms' daughter! (Sorry I don't know your name) </p>

<p>That was a lot of really helpful information. I also looked at the Bulgarian Club and it looks like the representation of countries is phenomenal! I have to go by what I feel, and so far i'm feeling like the people at Bucknell were a little less tense, and maybe a little more easy going. </p>

<p>Concerned Dad: Really? Where did you get your dates, because I was recently admitted?
Sorry to have offended you.</p>

<p>Current student here.</p>

<p>On the Fulbrights, MHC students/alumnae have received 31 Fulbrights in the last 10 years. We have a wonderful advisor, Elizabeth Mandeville, who helps folks through the fellowship application process. More on her here: Mount</a> Holyoke College :: News :: Meet MHC's New Fellowship Advisor</p>

<p>Second, I'm from just outside of a major city, so coming to Western Mass I thought I was going to be isolated. But with 30,000 students within a 10 mile radius, there is actually a lot to do at night - more than I had at home, even! I go out with friends all the time in Northampton and Amherst, where there is a fun bar scene and lots of live music pretty much all the time. It has the perks of a big city but not nearly so expensive.
I wouldn't say people here are non-social. We have a very intense academic load, but that doesn't keep people from having fun, going to parties, hanging out on the green or campus center (sometimes it can even be hard to get work done in the library because so many people hang out there). Also not sure where you would have heard that this is a dry campus - it's not. Folks are also VERY involved on campus, so sometimes it's hard to get off campus because you become so entrenched in extracurriculars, be they political orgs, theatre, model UN, academic societies, cultural orgs, etc.</p>

<p>Here's the truth: your social life (as with your entire college experience) is what you make it. There is no one "type" who goes here, and there is a place for everyone. Two people on this campus can have completely different experiences and never overlap. Wherever you go, this will likely be the case. If you want to party, go for it. If you want a prestigious fellowship following graduation, go for it. If you want an amazing education, again, it's up to you and the perspective you take. This is a great school that can take you far if you allow it.</p>

<p>I still can't decide. It's such a close comparison.
How many MHC students go to Boston or bit cities on the weekends? How easy is it to take classes at other colleges? and how active are the five college clubs. I mean I don't think it would be effective to just go to UMASS and sit outside in my effort to have interaction with the opposite sex.</p>

<p>How friendly are the people once they warm up to you? Is the library always so old-fashioned? How's the gym at MHC?</p>

<p>Wants2Thrive, your stream-of-consciousness-like questions aren't going to solve your problem. Hate to break it to ya, but most of your questions should have already been answered during your college search prior to your application. Even so, if you need more info, there's this thing that Google does - shows pictures, information sites that you can refer to that answer all your queries. Most of the answers have already been discussed on CC as well. Asking blindly like that is like shooting blanks, and it demeans all the nice people who have replied extensively to your prior concerns.</p>

<p>However, since I am feeling particularly generous (and have a lot of time on my hands), I will try and address some of the concerns you raised (yet again). From what I've gathered, trips to Boston or NYC (the other close 'big city') are not that often unless you have a long break, say, a week's worth. This is in part due to cost and traveling time. Still, Amherst and Northampton provides enough entertainment for most students - you get free shuttle, it's close by and it has everything, minus the grand pollution of 'big citites'. </p>

<p>ConCerndad got the dates right. My deposit was only extended til the 10th. I'm curious - what reason did you give to warrant such an extension - I would think it defeats the whole purpose of 'depositing money if you're going to hold that one spot from some other waitlistees who'd really want to attend MHC upon their thorough research.</p>

<p>Your last three questions are just downright silly. Are your sebaceous glands very active in the summer?</p>

<p>Oh, sitting outside UMASS to talk to boys is a good idea, but I'm sure there are other public areas with similar opportunities as well. I hear the Gents' is quite popular.</p>

<p>I have to ask, Wants2Thrive, have you visited both campuses? Mount Holyoke has a beautiful brand new fitness center and "gym" facilities. The library is not only gorgeous, it is inviting.</p>

<p>You might want to look at a map. Neither Bucknell nor Mount Holyoke are in metropolitan areas. Mount Holyoke is easily accessible to both Amherst and Northampton, which are vibrant towns. In addition, South Hadley is closer to Boston than Lewisburg is to either Philadelphia or NYC (NYC is probably equidistant.) Please reread item 2 of my daughter's post #2.</p>

<p>Finally, you might want to take to heart the last paragraph of 1080qaz's post #5.</p>

<p>Best of luck to you. I believe between these posts and what is available to you online (granted with a little effort) you have a lot of information available to you. Time now to internalize it and make your decision. If you find neither school is the place for you, take a gap year and reapply to a college more to your liking next year. We'll all be interested in your decision.</p>

<p>I have visited both campuses and I liked them both. I preferred the campus of Bucknell because it felt bigger and more like a university. However, I only stayed for three days and I felt incredibly isolated. The positive aspect of that is that I would probably continue to be good student because I wouldn't have much to do.
I also just like the entire feel of the Bucknell campus better. I watched both commencements, listened to both new presidents, and MHC, as someone said earlier just seems much more eccentric. Furthermore, MHC is known for bringing in students from low-income backgrounds, which while I am not wealthy, I am not low-income and I worry that the school is rather slanted in that students who don't have as many resources. For example, so many of the scholarships, stipends, and opportunities are for students who haven't done things. For example if a student hasn't been abroad, or if a student is FIRST to go to college. Whereas at bucknell, students are known for being upper-middle class and I would be probably below average and maybe have a better experience.
Conversely, I have heard from a student who just graduated that the major I was accepted to offers LOTS of HELP, and is active. The program at Bucknell, while approximately the same size, isn't as active. But if I'm miserable, and dislike the general public then what good am I for them or my success? </p>

<p>I gotta choose because my financial aid stuff came through so now I need to make a decision!!</p>

<p>I have to second ConCerndDad at this point. D is attending MHC and the young women there know what they want and why they're there. They are also open-hearted and open minded, with a zest for life. I take issue with the following:</p>

<p>"MHC is known for bringing in students from low-income backgrounds, which while I am not wealthy, I am not low-income and I worry that the school is rather slanted in that students who don't have as many resources. For example, so many of the scholarships, stipends, and opportunities are for students who haven't done things. For example if a student hasn't been abroad, or if a student is FIRST to go to college. Whereas at bucknell, students are known for being upper-middle class and I would be probably below average and maybe have a better experience."</p>

<p>Are you are equating money with "better" life experience? </p>

<p>I know nothing about Bucknell but perhaps you should visit their site.</p>

<p>Please go to Bucknell. I do not want my D to have to deal with you.</p>

<p>So basically, what you're trying to say is that you don't want to go to MHC because they offer too much help to young women who don't have the same privileges as you but are just as gifted and intelligent? </p>

<p>MHC prides itself on diversity (be it cultural or economical) so maybe the question is no longer if MHC is a fit for you but if you are a fit for MHC.</p>

<p>Besides, shouldn't you have made your decision already? It's wayy past May 1!</p>

<p>Actually, Wants2Thrive, you brought up the word eccentric in your first post. My daughter responded: 'Mount Holyoke is a diverse community...It is perhaps the diversity of the student body that leaves some people to see the eccentricities on campus."</p>

<p>She went on to say: "The beauty of the school is that it promotes mutual respect though the various types of diversity that everyone brings to campus."</p>

<p>Think about that statement. At this point in your life, do you think you are mature enough for an esteemed institution such as Mount Holyoke? Seems to me both your mind and soul need education and maturing before you are ready for any liberal arts education. Again, I suggest that you take a gap year. Work in the real world, with real people. Do some soul searching. You might just find that that Lexus you drive doesn't make you any better or more intelligent than anyone else.</p>

<p>Mount Holyoke is a wonderful institution. It provides a fantastic education. I couldn't be more proud that my daughter is a graduate of Mount Holyoke College.</p>

<p>...and this is exactly why I was worried about MHC. I simply stated the vibe I felt while on campus. First of all, thanks for the responses. For the record, I DO appreciate a school that helps young woman from disadvantaged backgrounds, don't misunderstand.
I just want to know that if I pay them some 45,000 a year that I will be able to get the same opportunities as the other students even though I am not low-income. I do think that Bucknell or one of the other schools that offered me admission might fit me better but the the proximity to Boston, the academic program that i'm going into and the five college consortium education makes me feel like MHC is the best idea.</p>

<p>"I just want to know that if I pay them some 45,000 a year that I will be able to get the same opportunities as the other students even though I am not low-income."</p>

<p>Wants2Thrive, this is a ridiculous statement. Do you think that colleges have students on financial aid wear tee shirts or arm band so they get special consideration? </p>

<p>At Mount Holyoke, every student is challenged in every class every day. Every student is offered the same opportunities. It is up to the student to take advantage of the opportunities presented. No one is handed anything on a silver platter. Hard work and being pro-active gets you places.</p>

<p>No contest, MHC</p>

<p>There is no better education anywhere. Mostly, your admission to top grad schools will be much easier.</p>