Colleges for driven people that are also artsy and outdoorsy?

I’m currently a second year undergraduate student at UGA, but I don’t think it is the right fit for me. I would like to go to a university where everyone is extremely driven and prioritizes school. I understand that most students in college are driven as they are enrolled in higher education, but I have not found this to be the case at UGA. I would like the people to be open-minded and artsy. It would also be a benefit if there was a good outdoors program/nearby things to do. Is there a university that exists with all this?

I’m majoring in astrophysics so a good program would be a plus but not neccessary!

Suitable recommendations will depend on the levels of your academic record and standardized test scores, should you care to post more information.

CU Boulder. All the students may not be ‘driven’ but those in astrophysics are.


Wesleyan is strong in both the arts as well as STEM; an astrophysics track is nested within its Physics Dept.:

Williams is the college that immediately comes to mind, but it’s obviously highly selective. Only 3.8% of transfer applicants were admitted last year.

Whitman is worth a look as a less selective alternative.

What are your academic stats?
What can you afford?

take a look at Reed

How serious are you about astrophysics? That will determine how you make your list.

Update: I have a 3.5 GPA and in the honors college at UGA. My test scores were alright… highest ACT was 29 but 31 superscore. Definitely serious about astrophysics.

Thank you all for your responses!

Does UGA refer to its honors as an Honors College or Honors Program ?

Thank you in advance.

Yes, UGA has an Honors Program. Does that answer your question?

In my experience “extremely driven and prioritizes school” becomes a better description of the junior and senior years of university, rather than the freshman year, with sophomore being somewhere in the middle. One issue is that students who goof off for their freshman year are mostly either gone by their sophomore year or have got their act together and started working harder. Thus if you do not find a good option elsewhere things might get better at UGA over time. Remember that it is only for four years, and you are already well into your second year.

I will admit that some students do get burned out somewhere through the process, so these generalizations are not perfect.

What is your budget and home state? If you are in state for UGA, being full pay out of state might be more expensive. CU Boulder did occur to me also reading your post, but I have no clue whether they give aid to out of state transfer students (apparently some merit aid is possible for out of state incoming freshmen).

Yes, it does answer my question.

I am aware of Georgia’s Honors Program & Foundation Fellows, but was curious as to whether the honors program was now an honors college as referred to you in post #8 above.

Thank you for clarifying.

As a reach suggestion, look into Vassar.

Transfers are tough, but look into Middlebury, Vassar, Pitzer, Pomona, Bowdoin, Bates, Williams, Amherst, URochester, Skidmore, Wesleyan, Occidental, Colby for open-minded, artsy, outdoorsy students serious about school.

@PetraMC suggestion regarding Colby College in Maine is an excellent idea in my opinion, however, Williams College, Amherst College, Bowdoin College & Pomona College are unlikely to admit you based on your posted GPA from UGA. But, I also wonder whether any of these schools offer an astrophysics major.

I disagree with the recommendation of Pitzer College unless you consider yourself to be a SJW (social justice warrior).

Students get more serious in their final two years, so UGA might be your best bet based on major & COA.

P.S. Not sure how elite schools will view a 3.5 GPA from the University of Georgia.

P.P.S. A more serious academic environment can be found at the University of Washington in Seattle.

Whitman in Washington has a Physics-Astronomy degree.

Cornell would be a high-reach, especially since they admit a lot of transfer applicants under their guaranteed transfer admission agreement they offer freshmen applicants, but Ithaca is extremely beautiful. Cornell has an extremely strong FA program as well, though I do not know if they are need-aware or need-blind for transfer applicants.

Dartmouth in New Hampshire is very pretty as well, but they accept very few, if any transfer applicants, due to their small size.

Reed College is a reach as well, but the PNW is gorgeous. Reed is home to a student run reactor, which could be attractive as a Physics student.

Skidmore, Vassar, Wesleyan, Whitman, Reed.

Take a look at Colorado College–not sure how many transfer students CC accepts. There is a physics department that has an astrophysics track. A friend’s son went there and started out thinking he’d study atrophysics and then changed his major. There are lots of students there who enjoy the outdoors.