Is Albany Still a Good School??

<p>I need advice. </p>

<p>My son has applied to and been accepted to many SUNY schools (Cortland, Fredonia, Oneonta, Oswego, Albany, New Paltz) and I am very confused.</p>

<p>I realize that I am from a different generation but when I went to college Albany was always a flagship SUNY school. Now I do not know. I read mixed reviews and I see that the ratings have fallen a lot! US news rates it as a tier 3 school (whatever that means) and on all ratings I have seen, Albany is at the bottom of the list.</p>

<p>Has Albany gone down?? My son has also been accepted to UCONN, Penn State and UMass just in case but I would rather pay in state tuition if possible. </p>

<p>My feeling is that those who will be making hiring decisions are of my generation and may not know that the other SUNY schools have dramatically improved.</p>

<p>What is going on with SUNY Albany?? Your thoughts and opinions would be greatly appreciated.</p>


<p>I had my D's GC rank the schools she applied to academically (not based on price or anything else). She said Albany and UConn are academically on par with each other. Although very different types of schools (and very different tuition!). My D has gotten into both also.</p>

<p>Not that I go by everything the GC says, but that was her opinion.</p>

<p>Congrats on all the acceptances! We are still waiting for Binghamton (more highly rated than Albany) and Buffalo (more of a safe school for my D). She didn't apply to New Palz, but our GC has really been pushing it. She says it is the new "hot" SUNY.</p>

<p>In terms of reputation, I would think it depends on your major. Of course UConn (and Penn State) are much more "name" schools than Albany because of their success in sports.</p>

<p>I wish NY had a flagship with all that rah-rah college stuff. Good academics and all the rest.</p>

<p>Having said that, I don't know anyone who said their kids do not like Albany or Buffalo. One of my closest friends has a daughter who is a Binghamton grad who didn't like it - but other than that, I haven't heard anything negative.</p>

<p>Curious to read what others have to say.... we are going to be trying to make a decision between a SUNY and an OOS public .... it is going to be very hard....</p>

<p>I don't think Penn State/UConn/Rutgers are worth $20,000/yr more than a SUNY if you're instate for NY and not getting any financial aid. I do some hiring of professionals in my job - they're mostly at least several years out of college - and whether someone went to UConn or SUNY Albany, by itself, really wouldn't mean a lot in the hiring decision. A lot of state schools have had budget cuts and kids are graduating in 4 plus years....wouldn't you rather that extra year be at instate SUNY tuition?</p>

<p>If your son wants a larger University, then Albany is great choice. The NY system has 4 flagships...Albany, Binghamton, Buffalo, and Stony Brook. Each gets some sort of bragging rights. Try focusing on the positives. I really think that all the schools your son is looking at are good schools. Some of the positives about Albany:</p>

<p>Albany is a College Town. There is a consortium of 20 colleges in the greater Albany area where you can take courses, if they are not offered at Albany (Albany though does have an extensive offerings) ...For example, Albany doesn't have a great Dance Program, so you could take dance at say, Skidmore. Other areas in town are great restaurants, free city bus transportation, several event venues, Lark Street Festival, NYS Capital, Cross gates malls...including the imax. There is no shortage of things to do in town, or other students to meet, intern opportunities, and lots of students and young people.</p>

<p>The campus is unique and grows on you in terms of its charm. I understand that many don't like it, so I guess its a love it or hate it enviornment. We were there during the first snowfall and it was amazing! I think it's more attractive when the fountains are all on though. It's also a utilitarian design as classes are no more than a 5-10 minute walk from the furthest point. They are finishing a new dining hall in State Quad this year, and they redid Indian Dining Hall last year, and they are amazing. They have 2 research libraries that exceed 2million volumes. Wireless internet all over campus and residence halls.</p>

<p>The student body is great. Last year the admissions rate fell to 47%. The average hs gpa was 91 with 22% in the top 10% of their hs. They also had 241 presidental scholars admitted and 140 students entered the honors college...all large increases over previous years. 30% of the incomming class last year were students "of color" and their is about a 50:50 male to female ratio. There are over 200 student groups, or it's easy to start a new one.</p>

<p>I could go on, but I don't know what your son is interested in. The ability for your son to be happy and do well at Albany is certainly there. And this aspect, also known as "fit" is a key to success in college.</p>

<p>I wouldn't pay attention to US News and other rankings, or reputation pages, since these can often be manipulated and usually don't offer a real indication of fit. For example, does the fact that a school has a average gpa for entering freshman of 3.5 or 3.7 really make a difference in how well your student will do? Of course not, in fact several schools who are difficult to get into as freshman are easy to get into as a transfer. Or if a school has to many female students and it's easier to get into if your a male really have a influence on your education? All these schools are party schools. In fact sometimes the smaller schools are worse because there is nothing else to do, or because there is not enough diversity to find your type of friends. Where ever he goes to schools he will be exposed to drinking students, students who take drugs....Albany is no different. Some of these reputation sites like students review dot com are loaded with fake reports so as to boost or drop their ranking. One night I was up late, about 3am, and reading about voting for your favorite value school at the US news site. When I went there to look I could see votes comming in at an unbeilievabe rate for several schools, and it made me realize that something strange was happening.</p>

<p>Feel secure knowing that Albany is great school, and will offer you son an opportunity to become what he desires.</p>

<p>Good Luck!</p>