Finding intellectual peers at lower-ranked schools

There are intellectual peers at EVERY school, and to suggest otherwise is frankly insulting.

Try to contact NCSSM Admissions, send an email, they are typically very responsive. To my knowledge there are two NCSSM programs your eldest daughter cannot apply to and that is residential and online. (Can only apply as a sophomore.) There is some additional offering that I do not know too much about but my understanding is that if a school has 4 kids they can sign up for some classes, but again I do not know details.

Just google Charlotte Math Club and you will get details. For the last few years they held it monthly at a private school in Charlotte but I think they might be moving locations for the upcoming year to a charter school that will be quite convenient for you. Outstanding professors from UNCC, CPCC, Davidson, etc. It is an amazing program.

The Morganton campus has been pushed back one year. It is in the NC budget but not certain what might happen given current uncertainties. As far as the school is concerned, it will happen, just one year later than planned.

Probably you will have to look to UNCC or CPCC for math which is not the end of the world as it should transfer later on whereas it becomes a bit uncertain with getting credit at many colleges for NCSSM courses which is ridiculous. I know many folks on CC get upset as the above poster did but while there are probably intellectual peers at all colleges, it is definitely harder to find them at some places and I think this will be the disadvantage for your daughter if she takes math, etc at a nearby uni as opposed to NCSSM.

I really agree with this. If you start early, as you should, the list will probably change as your daughter matures rapidly in her opinions about what she thinks she wants, and as you two learn more about the process and all the different colleges out there.

It will not be a surprise if the top three colleges at the beginning, eventually fall off. And it won’t be a surprise if one or two get back on the list. Keep an open mind throughout, and you’ll have a great chance at ending up at a place that fits your daughter.

We’re in NC, too, and I think this is a great place to be when searching for colleges. Aside from the universities in NC, you can stay close and still find great schools in VA, SC, and TN. And expanding slightly to DC, MD, GA, DE, and PA opens up dozens of more great options. And going out just a little further to OH, FL, NY, CT, and MA will give you even more.

Your budget and your daughter’s stats should make many places possible. Start early, keep an open mind, and sift through the options. You’ll be amazed at what you never knew before.

You have lots of choices and yes she will find her peers. NC State or UNC-CH are wonderful schools and have great premed advisors and coursework and lots of other majors if she changes her mind. They have great honors colleges. SMU or Baylor would be good choices too!

My S17 chose a “lower ranked” school because he loved it and it gave him an early admit to vet school and a great scholarship for OOS. He wanted out of TX! Three years later he is finished undergrad, loved every minute (well except the last two months with COVID) and can’t wait to get back for vet school in the fall. He found the courses challenging, the travel abroad wonderful, the teachers very engaging (ok there were a few …), and the students great to have intellectual discussions with. Now he also was in a fraternity (the president for a year) and very social. He ended with top grades (his course work was mainly pre-med) and friends for life. The honors college was great too but he chose not to do much with it after his Freshman year to take more high level science courses.

She will bloom where she is planted. I love we got out with no debt from undergrad and he got a great education!

It sounds to me that going to a Christian college like Wheaton in IL would be the best fit for your daughter. If she is conservative in her faith and used to that small, nurturing type of environment it can be very hard to find your people in a public university. My kids attended a Christian school and even though their high school was large some kids found it hard to transition to dorm life at a public school.

She seems a lot like me. I got a 1310 on my first PSAT and I thought that was what I wanted too but the nice thing about an honors college is it creates that smaller community and comes with so many advantages over all other students that you will not get at higher ranked schools. Do not discredit them especially because they will give you a chance to be top of the game for all of those big school resources.

If you can swing it, I would highly recommend checking out Wheaton (IL). Not only is it a great school, the school food is terrific and the surrounding downtown of Wheaton is a very picturesque, walkable mix of shops, restaurants, ice cream parlors and salons…as well as a metra train that goes directly to downtown Chicago (in about 45 minutes).

OP: Curious as to why your daughter prefers a Christian school. Is it due to a strong faith based calling or is it due to the need to feel protected after a bad experience at a private, non-Christian school ?

There will be active Christian students at all major Southern universities.

Where did your daughter wind up. I have followed some of your threads. I like a lot of the same schools