Did anyone make it to scholars day?

<p>DD and I made the road trip. We both still think it is the best fit and will just wait for the official papers to come in the mail. </p>

<p>We spent a very long time after the close of the day with staff and students.</p>

<p>We (spouse, daughter and I) were there (I was the person who asked about the CTCL book at the parents' meeting with the president, trustee and parent). We liked the school a lot and felt that the students, faculty and administration were exceptionally friendly. </p>

<p>We're still waiting to hear from several schools, but my daughter indicated that she would be very happy at St. Mary's -- something she hasn't said about any other school she's visited.</p>

<p>I am planning a visit to St. Mary's with my junior daughter later this month- would love to hear both of your impressions of the school, the student body, and the surrounding area. Also, any tips of things to look for or questions to ask on our tour?</p>

<p>Thanks!</p>

<p>I talked to the students every chance I got. I asked open ended questions to get the kids talking. I really like the close knit feeling of the school. Most students at St. Mary's are bright. The small classes allow them to really learn and ask questions. This is the biggest draw for me. I have liked every teacher I have met at the school. These teachers get to know their students and the students get to know their teachers. The students tell me is it very easy for them to get help from their professors. That the professors leave their doors open for the students even to just come and talk. My dd needs that kind of interaction with her teachers. The is weekly tutoring available with other students too. </p>

<p>My dd doesn't have any problem with the isolation because most of the stores she needs are about a 15 minute drive. I believe they have some transportation from the school to the town daily. Also because it is a hike for most of the students to drive home on the weekends, they just stay at the college. The college also tries really hard to bring in entertainment for the kids. </p>

<p>Many Maryland Universities offer honors colleges and my dd was accepted to a couple of them but these Universities only give the living learning opportunity during freshmen year. You are dumped into the rest of the community after freshmen year so the advantage of becoming close knit is lost for the most part after freshmen year. I also don't want my dd trying to find decent housing after her sophomore year at these other universities. The towns around some of them are not safe. Dd can live at St. Mary's all four years with a guarantee of housing. </p>

<p>St. Mary's has the best 4 year graduation rates for Maryland public universities. Which means that the kids stay in college and graduated on time. I figure they must like it enough to stick around and they must get enough support to graduate on time.</p>

<p>I went to the scholar's day and had a blast. To be fair, St. Mary's has been my first choice since tenth grade, so I'm a little biased! I was so excited to get the invite. I'm an out-of-stater though so I really hope I get enough aid to attend, but the scholar's day was definitely a step in the right direction.
It just feels like the right place for me. I love the small class sizes, how it's so close to water, and that there's a church near by (although that last one doesn't have much to do with the college itself).</p>

<p>Did you received your package this weekend?
I hope it was enough for you to attend. </p>

<p>Ours came and I had actually hoped for a little more merit aid since we can not qualify for financial aid.</p>

<p>It hasn't arrived yet (now I'm nervous!), but I live many states away, so I'm not surprised it hasn't made it. I'm not going to qualify for need-aid either, but with a sister going to college the year after me, I can't hardly be selfish and hold up all the tuition money! :)</p>

<p>we were happy with it, though it did come in at less than we'd hoped for -- other schools have offered aid packages that will result in lower costs per year than smcm (by about $5-7k per year -- a substantial but not insurmountable amount) We still await decisions from a couple of other schools and we'll only be able to make "the decision" once all offers are ready for evaluation.</p>

<p>She really liked the visit a lot. We all did and came away very pleased with the school and happy with the opportunity to attend.</p>

<p>DD is still waiting on one college and once that information is available we will make the final decision. I think the biggest problem is that smcm is 5k more a year to start then the other public colleges and it is hard for scmc to come down to the other colleges cost once these colleges offer merit aid. Smcm tries to spread their money around to more kids. I think this college is a much better fit for my dd. It just hurts my pocket a lot more when she wants the most expensive college over the one she could go to for nearly free. </p>

<p>I love this college and I see why she loves it too.</p>

<p>I got my package today! It was about as much as I expected. I hoped for more, but honestly I would have been shocked if it was! I need to wait on a couple other merit offers before I make the decision. You hit the nail on the head, it's a great fit, but honestly, my instate school option will cost as much as the SMCM scholarship altogether (I didn't get great amounts from SMCM, my state just has really affordable schools!). We'll just have to see what happens. I hate college waiting!</p>

<p>The cost is the biggest downside, but for the quality of education you receive, you're getting the most bang for your buck out of any place on a full tuition basis. Now, if Harvard gave you a full ride, then you'd be getting more for each dollar than St. Mary's, but that one is tough to combat. I will say this: the college is working very hard to keep costs down and increase scholarships while not sacrificing the quality of the program. With luck, as the economy improves, the state will help balance out the cost of a St. Mary's education v. other in-state schools.</p>