JHU for undergrad?

<p>Alright, so I'm a junior in Maryland and I'm trying to narrow down my college search. (So far I've narrowed it down to "anywhere but UMD" -- everyone goes to UMD.) Johns Hopkins seems pretty reasonable, as it is a very reputable medical-y/science-y school as well as conveniently close to where I live. So it was hovering near the top of my list for a week or so... until I casually mentioned that in conversation yesterday and my friends started jumping all over me, telling me to "RUN TEN MILES IN THE OTHER DIRECTION." Three or four of my friends adamantly believe that Johns Hopkins is a waste of money for an undergraduate degree and that I would be better off going... um... anywhere else? They also say that Baltimore sucks, but I kinda like Baltimore! </p>

<p>I asked another friend, who told me that, yes, it sucked for undergrad, unless you're going into med school -- which is not what I plan to do. I don't actually have a plan yet, but I'm pretty interested in neuroscience (cognitive neuropsychology specifically) and I hear that JHU has a good neuroscience program. This friend also contributed that, from what she's heard, JHU students are "so competitive that they track down the number one student and smash their computer!!!" </p>

<p>Erm. Any input? Of course, I don't want to offend JHU undergrad students by implying that their school sucks. I'm sure there's at least some degree of insanity to what my friends say, because I know that it's a really reputable school and what not. But would you guys agree that it would be a bad idea to go to JHU for my undergraduate degree? :/</p>

<p>JHU does not suck at undergraduate; don't listen to your friends; if you like the school, apply</p>

<p>JHU is amazing no matter what anybody else says. I think it's better than William and Mary, especially for sciences. </p>

<p>JHU isn't really all that expensive, mind you. When you pay for one of these highly competitive colleges that are "honorary" Ivies, you're paying for a quality education. When you put on your resume that you graduated from JHU, it doesn't matter which program because so many of them are good. For many of these schools, you're paying for a name.</p>

<p>Thank you guys! My friends are officially insane/misinformed. </p>

<p>JHU would be cheaper for me as an in-state applicant, too, right? I mean, money isn't a big deal in the first place, but I don't want to gyp my parents of money when I could be getting just as good of an education somewhere else... but you're right; the name is pretty important and probably worth it.</p>

<p>JHU is a private university. In state tuition is the same as out of state tuition.</p>

<p>What you are experiencing is largely "familarity breeds contempt." There is probably also some jealousy and fear of rejection. I live in Providence and many local kids put down Brown. Kids in the Boston/Cambridge/Sommerville area often put down Harvard. It is to be expected that local kids may put down Hopkins. After all, most of them can't get admitted so there is usually a reason they put it down. The same is true for the other schools I just mentioned.</p>

<p>The stories about competive "cutthroats" at JHU is almost entirely urban myth. Don't listen to stories from people without first hand knowledge. Your friends didn't go to Hopkins--so how could they possibly know? Since you live near Hopkins--it is easy for you to visit--spend some time talking to students who know what it is really like. Talk to members of the faculty. Visit the labs and classrooms. Spend time in the libraries. You can then make up your own mind. I think you will find it is indeed a fantastic place to do undergraduate as well as graduate work. The opportunities are enormous. The student body is diverse--and incredibly talented.</p>

<p>It is, however, expensive. As expensive as the Ivies. On the other hand, it is need blind (for American applicants applying as freshmen) and generally meets all demonstrated need for financial aid. The one exception to the expensive part is you graduate from a Baltimore Public High School. In that case it is free (if you are admitted, that is).</p>

<p>Good luck.</p>

<p>I will second others' comments above who say that you should visit and make your own judgments about Johns Hopkins. </p>

<p>Students who would be competitive applicants to Johns Hopkins have a lot of choices. Lots of great schools to consider, but without knowing your interests, it's a little difficult to suggest good candidates. Given this lack of information, I will provide some data on several colleges that are statistical peers to Johns Hopkins, which I defined below as +/- 50 basis points from the SAT average of 1390 at JHU.</p>

<p>One way to look at this is privates and publics. For the privates, one frequently can get more financial assistance, but they also commonly have a higher initial starting price tag (Rice is a significant exception to this). For the publics, you have fewer "elite" choices, but two are just next door to you (W&M and U Virginia). </p>

<p>From data drawn from collegeboard.com, here are some numbers that you might find helpful</p>

<p>(Note: This data is mostly drawn for students enrolling in Fall, 2006-more recent data will be broadly available in 2008)</p>

<pre><code>National Universities-Public


<p>Size College , Cost , Student/Faculty Ratio , % of classes with <20 students , % of classes with > 50 students , SAT 25th percentile , SAT 75th percentile , SAT average</p>

<p>14676 U Virginia , $27,515 , 15/1 , 49% , 15% , 1220 , 1430 , 1325
5734 W&M , $26,725 , 11/1 , 47% , 7% , 1240 , 1440 , 1340</p>

<pre><code>National Universities-Private


<p>Size College , Cost , Student/Faculty Ratio , % of classes with <20 students , % of classes with > 50 students , SAT 25th percentile , SAT 75th percentile , SAT average</p>

<p>6422 Stanford , $34,800 , 6/1 , 73% , 10% , 1340 , 1540 , 1440
9730 U Penn , $35,916 , 6/1 , 74% , 8% , 1330 , 1530 , 1430
5260 Columbia , $35,166 , 6/1 , 71% , 9% , 1330 , 1540 , 1435
4807 U Chicago , $35,868 , 6/1 , 72% , 4% , 1320 , 1530 , 1425
13,562 Cornell , $34,781 , 10/1 , 60% , 16% , 1280 , 1490 , 1385
6010 Brown , $36,342 , 9/1 , 68% , 11% , 1350 , 1530 , 1440
8153 Northwestern , $35,429 , 7/1 , 74% , 8% , 1320 , 1500 , 1410
4478 Johns Hopkins , $36,400 , 11/1 , 66% , 11% , 1290 , 1490 , 1390
3049 Rice , $26,974 , 5/1 , 62% , 9% , 1330 , 1540 , 1435
6646 Emory , $32,506 , 7/1 , 66% , 6% , 1300 , 1470 , 1385
6378 Vanderbilt , $33,440 , 9/1 , 67% , 6% , 1280 , 1470 , 1375
8352 Notre Dame , $35,187 , 13/1 , 55% , 11% , 1290 , 1500 , 1395
5669 Carnegie Mellon , $34,578 , 10/1 , 66% , 9% , 1300 , 1490 , 1395
6853 Georgetown , $35,964 , 11/1 , 58% , 7% , 1290 , 1490 , 1390
16729 USC , $35,810 , 10/1 , 62% , 12% , 1280 , 1460 , 1370
4995 Tufts , $36,700 , 7/1 , 72% , 5% , 1340 , 1480 , 1410</p>



<p>Size College , Cost , Student/Faculty Ratio , % of classes with <20 students , % of classes with > 50 students , SAT 25th percentile , SAT 75th percentile , SAT average</p>

<p>2003 Williams , $35,670 , 7/1 , 75% , 3% , 1320 , 1520 , 1420
1648 Amherst , $36,232 , 8/1 , 68% , 4% , 1330 , 1530 , 1430
1484 Swarthmore , $34,884 , 8/1 , 76% , 2% , 1320 , 1530 , 1425
2318 Wellesley , $34,994 , 9/1 , 64% , 1% , 1310 , 1470 , 1390
1980 Carleton , $36,142 , 9/1 , 64% , 1% , 1330 , 1490 , 1410
2406 Middlebury , $36,910 , 9/1 , 70% , 4% , 1270 , 1480 , 1375
1545 Pomona , $33,932 , 8/1 , 73% , 1% , 1370 , 1520 , 1445
1734 Bowdoin , $36,370 , 10/1 , 64% , 3% , 1300 , 1480 , 1390
1667 Davidson , $31,794 , 10/1 , 72% , 0% , 1250 , 1440 , 1345
1168 Haverford , $35,390 , 8/1 , 75% , 2% , 1290 , 1500 , 1395
1153 Claremont McK , $35,400 , 9/1 , 79% , 0% , 1310 , 1490 , 1400
2813 Wesleyan , $37,106 , 9/1 , 64% , 5% , 1290 , 1480 , 1385
1589 Grinnell , $34,392 , 8/1 , 66% , 0% , 1250 , 1460 , 1355
2423 Vassar , $38,115 , 8/1 , 69% , 1% , 1300 , 1450 , 1375
700 Harvey Mudd , $33,325 , 9/1 , 62% , 5% , 1420 , 1550 , 1485
1752 W&L , $34,725 , 9/1 , 68% , 1% , 1300 , 1470 , 1385
1821 Hamilton , $36,860 , 10/1 , 77% , 0% , 1260 , 1460 , 1360
2782 Colgate , $37,660 , 10/1 , 63% , 2% , 1260 , 1430 , 1345
1865 Colby , $36,100 , 10/1 , 61% , 4% , 1270 , 1440 , 1355</p>

<p>my hopkins friends certainly don't seem to be suicidal or anything. I would have been happy to go to Hopkins after my ED gambit failed.</p>

It is puzzling why you persist in trying to cast collegeboard.com in such a negative light. Like USNWR, they do an excellent job at providing enormous amounts of data on a wide variety of colleges that students, parents, adcomms, high school guidance counselors, anyone can use. The vast majority of their data is found in the most recently released filings of a college's Common Data Set which the colleges themselves prepare. If you believe that their data is inaccurate (or if you feel that my posts of data drawn from that source are inaccurate), then please provide some specific examples of where this has been the case. </p>

<p>As an active user of collegeboard.com data, no one is more interested than me to learn about any problems with data integrity. But stating without substantiation that the collegeboard.com data is "often incorrect" gives the impression of widespread errors and is just wrong.</p>

<p>Oh, I'm definitely going to visit soon and get the feel of the campus and what not. (I haven't done ANY visits yet!) It's about 30 minutes from my house, so it won't be too difficult.</p>

<p>Cmbmom: Thanks! Haha pretend I didn't ask that. >__> </p>

<p>Bonanza: "Familiarity breeds contempt" definitely makes sense. Some of these people actually have parents/other relatives who have attended... still, though, none of them attended as undergraduates; they all went there for grad school and liked it. </p>

<p>And merit-based scholarships? I can roll with that. </p>

<p>Temima: I have good enough stats (4.0 and 1600/2390) so that my friends say that I could use JHU as a safety, but I doubt that -- I'd consider it a mid to high match. (Of course, that's just a guess; if I had a better idea of what schools were in my range, I'd be a lot better at this college-finding business!) I don't think that JHU could really be counted on as a safety for anyone; besides, I'm not anything too special in the sciences. </p>

<p>Hawkette: Thanks for the info! That is very helpful, and these facts coupled with visits will definitely help me narrow down my options. (I'm SUCH an indecisive person, though! I'm going to end up applying to like twenty schools and, of the ones to which I get accepted, deciding the night before my decision is due. xD) </p>

<p>Ilovebagels: Haha, glad to hear it. =) (Not about your EA failing, though, lol.) I have a friend who's graduating this year and counts on going to Hopkins; hopefully he'll give me some insight. (Although he's SOOO arrogant... "Pshhh, I'm already in at Hopkins!" "Have you mailed your application yet?" "Nah, I'll do it next week." I'd just love to see him get rejected... heh heh.) </p>

<p>Temima & hawkette: Stats only tell so much, anyways. As useful as they are, I'll take them with a grain of salt.</p>

Impressive stats!! You are right that stats aren't everything as the process has gotten so crowded with highly talented students applying to top schools. but you will undoubtedly have a lot of choices, including to some colleges that offer large merit aid awards. Let me know if I can provide you with any additional information on any of the mentioned colleges or those ranked above. Good luck.</p>


<p>As a H.S. junior, you are well ahead of your peers in many respects. One is that you have excellent stats (which as you suggest, do in fact "only tell so much", but notwithstanding, a 4.0 GPA and 2390 SAT score is for all intents and purposes "perfect" and puts you into consideration for any school in the country.). Having done the heavy-lifting part in building and sustaining an excellent academic track record, your next steps will be to introspect and arrive at some subjective preferences.</p>

<p>What are your interests, even if you don't have an identified tentative major?</p>

<p>What type of college environment are you seeking?<br>
(Is big-time NCAA athletics and school spirit important? Are you wanting undergrad research opportunities? Do you want urban or suburban or rural? Do you fit in well within a large national university or would a smaller LAC environment be more comfortable?)</p>

<p>How important is financing your college education?<br>
(Do you and your parents demonstrate need for financial aid? If you and your family are at a middle income level, would you choose a top school (e.g., Harvard, Yale, Princeton) and pay full fare, or would you choose a "top 20" national university that could provide a substantial merit scholarship? As an example, look at Emory University's "Emory Scholars Program", which could possibly provide a full-ride scholarship ($180K value over 4 years))</p>

<p>How important is the social life, i.e., Greek life?</p>

<p>If you are like many (including my daughter, now at Emory), you may find that visiting many colleges will give you a strong sense of comparison and help you to arrive at defining your preferences. Further, that a combination of factors can lead to an ultimate decision that was unexpected when you first embarked on the college selection process.</p>

<p>Back to JHU, it didn't make my daughter's list, but it's a fine school for a lot of people. Don't be swayed by what OTHERS think ... be cognitive of what YOU think. Reach for all you think you can get; keep your options open; and maintain an eye for what suits YOU.</p>

<p>Good luck!</p>

<p>JHU is an excellent school for a neuroscience major.</p>

<p>Of course, not all college cultures will suit everyone...this is why you visit.</p>

<p>I keep hearing this idea that major research universities, not just JHU, are bad places to be an undergrad because of the focus on research and on the grad students. I wonder if this has something to do with your friends' mindset. As an alum (at the undergrad level) of a major research university, I disagree. It has its good side and its bad side, and to some extent whether it's a good idea depends on your personality and what sort of environment you thrive in.</p>

<p>Thank you, hawkette! :]</p>

<p>Jessie: Ohh, that helps a lot. I'm kind of mad at myself for trusting my friends' opinions as absolutes! What you say makes a lot of sense. And, yeah, I'm going to have to check out the environment and see how compatible I am with it... but from what I've heard, it doesn't sound unappealing at all and I feel silly for letting my friends make me doubt myself so much! </p>

<p>NorCalDad: I'm not sure about a lot of my preferences (lol I told you I was indecisive!), but these are excellent ideas as to where to start. Let me think this through:</p>

<p>My interests are all over the spectrum, ranging from computer science to art to neuroscience to English to math to French. (Not in any particular order, of course; I just tried to intersperse the left brain and the right brain stuff, lol.) So, while I'm looking at science-y/tech-y schools like JHU (and MIT's always been in the back of mind), I also wouldn't mind somewhere more well-rounded, where I could explore any of these interests. </p>

<p>As far as college environment... that's where I'm clueless. I think that visits will significantly help me decide this kind of stuff. For starters, though, I think that a HUGE school would be overwhelming. And I don't think I'd mind going somewhere really small (somewhere like Caltech seems like it would have a pretty intimate learning environment), but I'm not sure if I'd prefer that or just not mind it. Sooo I think that all I can eliminate is the OVERWHELMINGLY HUGE category. Haha. Athletics are unimportant and I'm not interested in the Greek life (girls judging each other's personalities quantitatively? Eek!), but neither is a turn-off; just unnecessary. </p>

<p>Finance is pretty unimportant, actually; we're from an affluent county and my parents would be alright with paying whatever amount of money. But I don't want to make them pay more than they have to, so I'm going to do my best to get some kind of merit-based scholarship. I'm above the PSAT semifinalist cut-off for my state (I have this weird talent for standardized tests lol); hopefully that will yield something. :] But fortunately, I don't think anything is really out of our price range. </p>

<p>I guess that's not a lot to work with, heh, sorry. "I'm interested in everything and I'm okay with any size and I can afford to go anywhere!" See why this search is so hard for me? xD</p>

<p>I suggest you visit a more reliable site than studentsreview...just read this stuff on their website =]</p>

<p>Freshman Blogs: 2011:</a> Hopkins Freshman Blog
Admissions Blogs: Hopkins</a> Insider
General JHU Blogs: Hopkins</a> Interactive >> Blogs
Hopkins Interactive: Hopkins</a> Interactive</p>

<p>And Your friends have absolutely no idea what they are talking about...</p>

<p>Well, I wouldn't say the admissions site is more reliable. The admissions site is going to hand pick who they want to blog and censor what they have to say.</p>

<p>Studentsreview is uncensored and no-holds barred from the students participating.</p>

<p>Hopkins is a good school. From what I've heard and read, the sciences classes are huge and the professors have little contacts with undergrads. The liberal arts departments I've heard are sort of like a liberal arts college--you get lots of attention, small class sizes, etc.</p>

It seems very odd that you continually seek to undermine some of the primary sources of material used by literally millions of Americans as they do their college searches. </p>

<p>You state that there are six colleges that are listed where, in your opinion, the collegeboard.com data is incorrect. I doubt it, but I’m willing to listen to/read your arguments. What are the six colleges and what are the specific errors that you see?</p>


<p>I want you to know I really appreciate your research. I always find it interesting. You are a significant contributor to this wesbite.</p>

A. I didn't list acceptance rate in the data posted earlier in this thread.</p>

<p>B. For the thread on college acceptance rates and yields, the collegeboard data was presented as representing students who entered in Fall, 2006. </p>

<p><a href="http://talk.collegeconfidential.com/college-search-selection/429673-acceptance-rates-yield-rates-top-usnwr-nat-l-unis-lacs.html%5B/url%5D"&gt;http://talk.collegeconfidential.com/college-search-selection/429673-acceptance-rates-yield-rates-top-usnwr-nat-l-unis-lacs.html&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/p>

<p>If you believe that the collegeboard data is inaccurate, then please provide documentation to support your belief. If you are unable to do so, I will interpret the lack of supporting evidence as your acceptance that the collegeboard data is correct. </p>

<p>Data for Fall, 2007 for all colleges is not yet broadly available and thus comparisons of different classes is apples and oranges. </p>

<p>C. Listing the other schools where you believe that collegeboard is wrong is not particularly helpful and demonstrates zero. What are the "too many errors" that you refer to?</p>

<p>I'm not sure why you persist in these characterizations, but I suspect that they only delegitimze your posts in the minds of others while putting fine schools like Johns Hopkins in the middle of a stupid discussion.</p>


<p>with those stats, you would be extremely competitive for merit money at many colleges, so you might cast a wide net. Hopkins is great and has merit money, but so do Emory, Rice, Wash U, Vandy, Wake, Caltech, and.....(note, however, that Caltech is ~60% guys, but maybe that's ok?) :)</p>