Comparing SUNY schools: Oswego, Plattsburgh, Potsdam, Oneonta


My son has been accepted to Owego, Plattsburgh, and Potsdam and is considering applying to Oneonta.

It seems Oswego, Potsdam and Plattsburgh are very similar academically, cold and far from NYC. :wink: Perhaps Plattsburgh is more scenic.

It seems they all have programs he’s interested in.

How would you folks compare them regarding academics, social life (Greek vs. non-Greek, friendliness), surrounding towns?

Many thanks.

We’re about to go on college visits.


@Theoden Each of these SUNYs has strengths in certain areas. Potsdam is noted for the Crane School of Music, Oswego is noted for business and radio and television (weatherman Al Roker is an alum), Plattsburgh is noted for its strong Nursing program, and Oneonta for business, education and sports management. If your son wants to major in one of these areas that is a well known strength of these particular schools then it makes sense to go that particular school. Each is listed in the USNews&World Report 2019 edition as a regional university with Oswego ranked the highest at #48, then Oneonta at #55, so they are of comparable prestige and perception, and then Potsdam and Plattsburgh, both of whom are tied at #87. I’ve heard that Plattsburgh has modernized and built several new facilities making its campus nicer than ever. Oneonta has the best town of this bunch. I’d eliminate Potsdam unless you’re in the Crane School of music. Pick the school based on the academic programs that your son is interested in, based on comfort level—how he feels upon his visit. He will do best at the school that he feels most comfortable at, and which has the academic programs he wants.

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@trackmbe3 thanks for the comments. He’s interested in Biology, Environmental Science and History. So none of the the strengths you mentioned. I think Oneonta has a great town and looks like it has a great biology department. Thanks for your help.

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I agree that Oneonta is the best town out of the bunch. An added benefit is that he could cross register at Hartwick.

@austinmshauri Can you really take classes at Hartwick?

Look up “cross registration” on their website to get the details. I think they’re limited to one class per semester but, yes, they’re allowed to cross register at Hartwick.