LOTs of Questions!

<p>I've been thinking about going to U of I Urbana-Champaign to get the in-state tuition. I want to be able to earn a Phd so spending too much on undergrad doesn't sound good to me. 3 main questions here: 1. Should I go to a better school? Specifically, i'm looking for a good biology program (molecular/cellular). I'm thinking uc san diego and uw madison but I'm not too sure about if these schools are good in molec/cell bio. 2. I've heard of plenty of folks that went to pretty bad schools (compared w/ U of I at least), that ended up getting Phds at Ivy schools. But, doesn't your undergrad school's prestige influence grad school acceptance? 3. If I do decide to go to a better school, should I just go private and pay that extra $10,000 or so a year? Vanderbilt sounds pretty nice to me but I'm not too sure where else I should apply to (1460 SAT and 3.6 GPA at Loyola Academy, which I hear is a pretty good high school, but I have no clue as too how good it is despite 3.25 years there, heh... anyway.. but not too many AP classes:AP Euro and AP Bio) .......whew, lots of stuff, first time I have a place to ask questions like these. I'll be glad if I get at least 10% of these things answered, thanks in advance for any advice.</p>

<p>eh, forgot to mention, 760 verbal, 700 math</p>

<p>any replies? or should i rephrase the question?</p>

<p>From what I've seen, engineering at UIUC is very lopsided. It's usually #4-#6 in engineering in rankings compared to the whole university ranking around #40. UIUC's chemical engineering is ranked #7 in the country and bioengineering is in the same department so it must be good. Unless you can get into the absolute top schools (MIT, Stanford... JHU for bio) with scholarships, UIUC would be the best possible choice for in-state people going into engineering.</p>

<p>aha...but i'm not going into engineering</p>

<p>With a 1460, you have a possibility of getting a good scholarship at lots of good schools. UW is great, but they are very stingy on fin. aid for out of staters from what I hear. I would recommend The University of Miami. It's a private school and has very strong sciences. I think with your stats, you stand a good shot at a scholarship. </p>

<p>Just make sure to weigh out your options. UI is a great school to lean back on, but don't limit yourself too much. Last year, my HS valevictorian(did I spell that right?) had a 1500 SAT and was fairly involved(pres of NHS). He got 8000 from Vandy. So, my advice to you is to apply to lots of matches/safeties and have good options coming out.</p>

<p>O, and definetely consider TULANE. But hurry, scholarship deadlines are passing.</p>

<p>Oh ok. I thought you meant Biomolecular Engineering.</p>

<p>A couple of things for you to think about. Grad schools are looking for strong students who have a demonstrated interest through research, internships or employment in the field of study. They also want students who have fairly clearly defined goals of what they want to accomplish in the graduate program. If you can do those things, it won't matter where you do you undergrad. They really don't care much about the prestige of your undergrad program.</p>

<p>Second, you mentioned that you didn't want to spend much on undergrad because you were planning on grad school. However, if you go to grad school in any area of science you will most likely be given a research or teaching assistantship which pays all you tuition plus a living stipend. It often includes health insurance as well. So you don't really need to worry about saving money for graduate school.</p>