Colleges full of people that WANT to be there?

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Well that's an interesting perspective.</p>

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cornell! i haven't met a single person who isn't happy there

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<p>Didn't they just have a bunch of suicides there though? I'm not trying to be mean or argumentative, but according to CNN a few weeks ago it was a real problem at Cornell last year.</p>

<p>sylvan - it is especially interesting since the Ivies don't lose many students and they don't give merit aid either.</p>

<p>I have a friend who isn't happy with Cornell. But they are also the only person I know at Cornell. I know anecdotes aren't evidence, but I haven't heard excellent things about it. And at Wash U I've heard a lot of students are disappointed with the experience because they weren't actually aiming for Wash U, but for Ivies/Stanford/MIT ect. </p>

<p>Of the schools I know where people WANT to be there: Yale, Stanford, Notre Dame, Pomona, there are probably a lot of others but those are the ones that stick out to me.</p>

<p>There wil always be unhappy students that stay at a school for various reasons. Actually, WUSTL students overall seem to be a very happy group that are extremely loyal to and pleased with their school. But Tyler is also correct that there is a small minority that never get over not getting into Harvard, Yale or Princeton. It is a shame, but that's life.</p>

<p>The simple fact of the matter is that most top schools (probably the top 100, if I had to guess) the overwhelming majority of students are happy to be there and "can't imagine being anywhere else". OK, maybe the last is a little over the top, although one hears it a lot from students attending many different schools. And that's a good thing. Hopefully it means that students do a good job overall picking the schools up front, and in other cases adapting to the situation they find themselves in, even if not their first choice.</p>

<p>Let me explain my reasons for why I think top liberal arts schools are more likely to have people that want to be there. It is often the case that many students attend the most prestigious school they got into as long as they don't hate the school at their preliminary visits. It's also the case that many attend the school that gave them the best deal financially as long as they didn't dislike it at first visit. When a decision to attend a school is primarily made based on prestige and/or finances (which is common), the school may not be the best fit for the student and thus the student may not actually want to be there. </p>

<p>Top liberal arts schools don't have the name brand or enormous endowments of Ivies and other top US News national universities, nor do they have the lower in-state tuition and numbers-driven merit aid of public colleges. Therefore, the students at top LACs are more likely to have chosen the school for the simple reason of liking the school and wanting to be there, because though they probably did or could have gotten into more prestigious/recognizable or less expensive colleges, they chose to attend an intermediate for other reasons. </p>

<p>This is a generalization, of course. We're also deviating from the OP's original question by posting lots of statistics, but if you want a school where students "want to learn" and are "open minded and themselves", an LAC is a pretty good bet for their emphasis on teaching and lesser degree of preprofessionalism, and a smaller student body can mean a closer-knit community.</p>

<p>I have a cousin who RAN from Cornell after two students committed suicide. She hated it. Thought the students were a miserable group that were there just because of the name recognition. Just one person's opinion.... but not good.</p>

<p>OP have you checked the c o l l e g e P r o w l e r . c o m site. Some interesting feedback from students about colleges on that site.</p>

<p>By the way, Nebraska's yield rate is ridiculous haha</p>

<p>My D2 is at Cornell right now, she loves it there, much moreoso than the LAC she transfered from. To each their own. But anyone who represents that they speak for the motives of over 13,000 students studying in seven different undergraduate colleges with quite varied academic interests and goals is presuming a lot.</p>

<p>U chicago where fun goes to die... nough said...</p>

<p>Nobody's really mentioned Carleton yet, so I'll be the first to bring it up (shamelessly promoting my own school...hehe). It's not as well-known and gets less applicants because it's in Minnesota, but if you can take the cold, I would argue that it sounds like exactly what you're looking for. The student body is really self-selecting, and the students I met all had a friendly, laid-back, intellectually curious atmosphere. In addition, people felt a lot less preppy and judgmental than at other places, and on the whole, I was really surprised at how non-competitive everyone was - all of which were part of the reason I picked Carleton. The academics are definitely challenging, but the students seemed so laid-back and friendly that it seemed like a good mix.</p>

<p>Of course, after shamelessly promoting my own school, I have to point out that there are many, many colleges that would fit the description you posted. From everything I learned during my own (intensely difficult) decision, Northwestern, Vanderbilt, Williams and Macalester are all places that sound like they would fit extraordinarily well.</p>

<p>our suicide rate is not obnoxiously high. we just have a more dramatic way to kill yourself so we get a lot of attention for it. </p>

<p>you're always going to have a few unhappy people everywhere. and a 96% retention rate isn't that low.</p>

<p>Hawkette I should point out that University of Iowa retention rate has gradually been increasing over the years. This year the school expects possibly their largest freshmen entering class ever.</p>

<p>^What? University of Iowa? </p>

<p>(apologies for the slightly elitist tone, but the sentiment stands nonetheless)</p>

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^What? University of Iowa? </p>

<p>(apologies for the slightly elitist tone, but the sentiment stands nonetheless)

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I'm not exactly sure on what your questioning.</p>

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I think he just dissed your school....</p>

<p>Anyone very familiar with higher education would know that University of Iowa is a respected school. Many would be surprised at how well Iowa does in graduate school rankings... it has a highly ranked medical and law school and well regarded programs in the biological sciences. Knowing what you turned down for Michigan, Tyler09, I'm kind of disappointed with the attitude of your post.</p>

<p>But having a highly ranked medical and law school, in theory at least, has nothing to do with undergrad. However, it might certainly have an effect on peer assessment, because again people just get a general "feeling" about a school, based on factors that are often inaccurate or not relevant. That is what the discussion was really about. Iowa is a fine school, of course. Maybe its PA is exactly where it should be, maybe it is actually too low, or maybe it is too high. That is unanswerable, because there is no real standard or absolute measure for this, and just asking a bunch people, a lot of whom are east coast and west coast and probably don't really know much about U Iowa, doesn't prove a thing. Again, they come the question, think "Oh right, they have that famous writing workshop" and the score goes up from a 2 to a 3 or a 3 to a 4, for instance. Quite possibly based on one famous program, that actually impacts most undergrads very little, Iowa gets a significant boost. This is why PA is flawed, certainly overweighted by a huge amount, and should be discarded along with the entire USNWR ranking system.</p>

<p>"our suicide rate is not obnoxiously high."</p>

<p>This is correct, measured over longer periods. However it certainly was obnoxioualy high last year, which is what has garnered the renewed attention. That this followed several years where there were no suicides there at all, and the unalarming longer-term statistics, sort of gets lost in the shuffle, understandably, when people are reacting to the current events.</p>

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Anyone very familiar with higher education would know that University of Iowa is a respected school. Many would be surprised at how well Iowa does in graduate school rankings... it has a highly ranked medical and law school and well regarded programs in the biological sciences. Knowing what you turned down for Michigan, Tyler09, I'm kind of disappointed with the attitude of your post.

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Thanks for identifying some of the schools highly reguarded areas.

[Quote]
But having a highly ranked medical and law school, in theory at least, has nothing to do with undergrad. However, it might certainly have an effect on peer assessment, because again people just get a general "feeling" about a school, based on factors that are often inaccurate or not relevant. That is what the discussion was really about. Iowa is a fine school, of course. Maybe its PA is exactly where it should be, maybe it is actually too low, or maybe it is too high. That is unanswerable, because there is no real standard or absolute measure for this, and just asking a bunch people, a lot of whom are east coast and west coast and probably don't really know much about U Iowa, doesn't prove a thing. Again, they come the question, think "Oh right, they have that famous writing workshop" and the score goes up from a 2 to a 3 or a 3 to a 4, for instance. Quite possibly based on one famous program, that actually impacts most undergrads very little, Iowa gets a significant boost. This is why PA is flawed, certainly overweighted by a huge amount, and should be discarded along with the entire USNWR ranking system.

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The University of Iowa is known very well reguardless of coast. If your trying to cite in your post that the school is underrated then you are correct, though the school is now being more recognized as it should.</p>