Comparison between Butler and Depauw?

<p>Can anyone offer their opinion on the differences between Butler and Depaw? On their websites - they both look like good LACs. I know they both have a good reputation.</p>

<p>Our daughter looked at both schools and is a freshman this year at DePauw. There were a few things that made DePauw stand out over Butler. One was their Honors program. You apply after being accepted to the school, then they select students to come for interviews in February or March. Our daughter came away from that weekend very impressed with DePauw. (I don't think Butler offered anything like that.) The Honors Scholars program has been really top notch, and her Honors advisor/professor is fantastic. In general, I think DePauw's academics are more rigorous than Butler's --- from what we've heard from people familiar with both. (Our daughter is a biology major, pre-vet.)</p>

<p>Also, DePauw offered substantially more merit money that Butler. : )</p>

<p>Good luck with this fun but stressful process!</p>

<p>Thanks buckeye7. that's the sort of thing I was looking for! I hope your daughter is having a good freshman year!</p>

<p>My D has only looked at Butler, and I don't know anything about DePauw, but I just wanted to chime in with my limited knowledge to say that Butler does also have an Honors program. D received the application after she was admitted. She is very interested in their Theatre program, so from that standpoint, she has truly liked Butler and it has risen to one of her top choices. She was also offered the Presidential scholarship at $16,000 per year.</p>

<p>As a Butler pharmacy grad with friends (and an ex-boyfriend) from DePauw, I'll chime in here. There are a few additional (albeit minor, as in the case of Greek life) issues to weigh as you make your decision between these schools...</p>

<ol>
<li><p>Location (obviously) - Greencastle is a small town. No way around it. They have great on-campus eats (nothing beats a GCB), and my friends at DePauw never complained about the fact that they were so far from city life, so I guess it depends on what you're looking for. Personally, I loved the fact that Butler was on a sprawling campus while also being within the Indianapolis city limits - malls, restaurants, and Starbucks were there when I needed them. Both have vibrant on-campus nightlifes but I guess I always saw Butler's proximity to Broad Ripple and downtown Indy as a bonus when I came "of age" and stopped being as interested in frat parties. Granted, I was in school for 6 years, so my vantage point may be a bit different than the traditional 4-year student.</p></li>
<li><p>Greek life - Maybe buckeye7's daughter has a different experience, but my understanding is that you pretty much have to be Greek (or know someone who is) at DePauw to have a social life. Granted, Butler often felt more Greek than it was, but in reality <50% of our students went Greek. Perhaps I have a skewed vision, but everyone I know from DePauw was in a fraternity or sorority and stayed within those roles. Admittedly, most of my friends at Butler were also Greek, but I had a lot of non-Greek friends in the sports and clubs I was in that really enhanced my experience. Not that anyone's parents want to know this, but both schools' frat houses know how to throw parties, and they were always well patrolled by the risk management officers, so you're guaranteed to have a good time no matter which school you choose.</p></li>
<li><p>Goals - If you are majoring in, say, dance or pharmacy... the choice should be clear. If you're more open in terms of degrees, I would suggest going where you see the most opportunity and where you feel like you want to spend the next 4 years of your life. If you're going in with the intention of finding yourself and your perfect major at a legitimately challenging liberal arts college, go where the options are, e.g., study abroad opportunities, honors programs, clubs that pique your interest, majors you might be interested in, outlets for those majors (ex: interested in journalism... does the school have a newspaper? interested in teaching... where do student teachers get placed?). Admittedly, DePauw is historically more selective than Butler, but Butler also has a national reputation on the basis of their recent NCAA success, which I know has made my degree more recognizable now than it would have been 10 years ago. </p></li>
<li><p>Feel - This was HUGE for me. I visited something like 10 schools before I stepped on Butler's campus, and it all came down to knowing that this was a beautiful place with an approach to learning that was in line with my own. I got great vibes from the tour guide, the pharmacy faculty, the admissions counselor, the person I stayed overnight with, and it all just clicked. I always tell this story when people ask me why I chose Butler... I walked past the library with my dad after the tour, called my mom and apologized because I knew I would be moving 12 hours away that fall. My parents loved it, I loved it, and you should love where you go, too. All the advice in the world from these forums won't give you what you need, which is just a general excitement about and pride in the place YOU choose to go and learn and establish yourself. </p></li>
</ol>

<p>Basically, when it comes down to 2 great schools like Butler and DePauw, I don't think you can lose either way.</p>

<p>Alright, well, I didn't plan on writing a novel, but here it is. I hope it answers some questions. </p>

<p>As a 2012 high school graduate and someone who heavily considered both butler and DePauw as my college choice, I must say know quite a lot about both colleges. I know people at both schools, I have spent hours reading up on both schools and I have made over a dozen visits (including overnight stays) between the two. This being said, I ultimately chose DePauw, so I will share some of my findings about the two universities.
1.) OPPORTUNITY: When it comes to opportunities, I'm referring to honors programs, internships, and study abroad options. This, in my opinion is one of DePauw's greatest advantages when being compard to almost ANY college. I have seen multiple people refer to the Honor Scholars Program as "the DePauw honors program." While this is an honors program, it is not THE honors program at DePauw. It is one of their 5 selective honors programs that each allow you to be involved in an honors program that specifcally caters to your interests. These programs are the Honor Scholars (which is based on philisophical thinking and academia), the Environmental fellows (Pretty obvious) the Media Fellows, the management fellows (their business honors) and the Science research fellows. All of these programs must be applied to and individually and they all hold their interviews on the same day. I applied for and was accepted into the Science Research Fellows. This program requires that I major in a field of science, stay on campus during my first summer to perform original science research with faculty (for which I will be payed), spend another summer doing an external science research intership (at places like the Mayo Clinic or Duke Med School), and take a few science courses specifically for SRF students. These honors programs are generally quite selective (for example I am one of seven students out of the entire freshman class of 600 that was chosen for the Science Research Fellows program.) (more info Honors</a> & Fellows Programs - DePauw University) Butler, as far as I have learned, has one all-encompassing Honors program. Students are invited to apply for this program if they have a high enough SAT/ACT score or GPA. Once invited to apply a student must write a short essay as their application. Butler's Program essentially involves taking honors courses.
Both schools have good travel abroad programs, but I lean towards DePauw on this because of their Winter Term. This is a one month period between the fall and spring semesters where students must either take an on-campus class in a subject outside of their typical interests, or travel abroad (which is something that a vast majority of their students do at some point.) Winter term makes it so much easier to travel abroad because their is a specific time set apart for it and students don't have to worry about missing out on credits. (more info Winter</a> Term - DePauw University)
Also I have been invited to another Program called "Servicio En Las Americas." This is a program for incoming freshman. This summer, I will head to DePauw for two weeks of spanish classes and service projects and then on to Ecuador for three weeks of immersion learning and further service projects. This program allows about 20 incoming students in every year and pays all expenses for the trip. more info (SERVICIO</a> EN LAS AMERICAS - DePauw University)</p>

<p>2.) SCHOLARSHIPS: In my experience (and from the accounts of others) DePauw's scholarship offers are far superior to Butler's. However, DePauw is considerabely more expensive. In my case, I was offered $30,500 annually from DePauw and $16,000 annually from Butler. This was all merit, nothing needs based. Eventually, I was award the Eli Lilly Endowment Scholarship (from an outside source not either school) which is given to selected Indiana high school students. This scholarship covers 100% tuition at ANY school in Indiana and gives a stipend for books. So, one would think this would equalize both schools in terms of money, but it did not. Instead, once DePauw heard of this honor, they offered to cover my room and board and make my undergraduate education completely FREE. Butler did not, meaning I would pay around $40,000 for my degree with them. </p>

<p>3.) STUDENT EXPERIENCE: People harsh on DePauw for being in such a small town. A legitmate argument I'd say, but in response I will point out that DePauw Has been ranked the 15th best party school in the entire nation (one of the only two so named indiana schools with IU being ranked 16th.) In my visits at both schools I have never heard anyone complain about lack of fun things to do. Butler certainly has the advantage of broadripple (a very close collection of bars clubs and restaraunts). Greencastle, however, (the town DePauw is located in) has recently been granted a 19 million dollar sum to re-do and enhance their entire downtown (which is a 2-3 minute walk from campus.) these renovations will be completed in about a year and a half and are intended to create more of a "college town atmosphere." It may be hard for Greencastle to compete with Indianapolis, but if for some reason a Danny (a nickname for a DePauw student) finds himself with nothing to do, he can make the 30-40 minute drive to Indy.
As for the greek life at DePauw, there has been a lot of talk about it being too exclusive. This may have been true in the past, but is now a vanishing trend. Greek life as a whole is shrinking at DePauw due to better attitudes towards independent students and very nice, very new housing options for independent students. In all, roughly 65-70% of DePauw students are greek (a number that used to be around 90%) and they have many many historic greek chapters, including THE VERY FIRST greek letter sorority. </p>

<p>4.) Miscellaneous: DePauw is definitely a more challenging school in terms of academics. It was even featured as one of the few schools left in the nation where students study 20+ hours per week in a recent Washington Post article. DePauw is also more difficult to get into, and is much ranked much higher than Butler (DePauw is usually ranked among the top 50 schools in the USA.) As for sports, Butler is definitely better if you want to watch, while DePauw is better if you want a chance to actually be a part of the action. The campuses are both nice although I am very partial to DePauw's old-style brick in contrast to the limestone that much of Butler's campus employs. Both campuses are essentially pristeen and beautiful year round. Both are EXCELLENT schools, and are two of the best schools you could choose to attend in Indiana.</p>

<p>Any specific questions? Feel free to ask, but I can't promise I'll know!</p>

<p>Thanks for the great information on Depauw. My daughter is going to be a senior and we've just started our search. I have collected data on many colleges and Depauw keeps popping up for high retention rate, high 4 year graduation rate, high percentage of full time faculty, high percentage of students receiving non-need merit aid, small class sizes, and overall happy students. We plan on visiting Depauw and Butler this fall. Butler's net price calculator doesn't make me hopeful for very much non-need merit aid coming our way.</p>