MIT or in-state Honors College

He said they could manage it, education is the single most important thing you can spend your money on, or you can get a new car or two.

Manage it “with a lot of loans and help from family.” How much from this, what from that, we don’t know. There’s a lot we don’t know, including the impact on the family. Maybe OP will fill in the blanks. Meanwhile, I think some of you are answering for yourselves, your circumstances. You haven’t mentioned your loans. Did your family go into hock this way?

Who really thinks they have 30k/year to spend on cars, instead?

@SwingShift Come back and let us know what your family decided!

MIT worth paying $120k over state school but not if it means graduating with large debt. Good luck with your decision.

There’s no way any of us can tell others whether a school like MIT is worth the added cost and debt vs a full-ride-state school. That’s a personal decision each family has to make.

The takeaway from this thread is for many MIT alum, whatever the additional debt burden was, it was well worth the investment.

Are you nuts? That kind of debt would sink your career. No degree is worth that kind of money unless it says M.D. next to it. First, you would be unlikely to get the financing to cover that amount of money. If your parents don’t make much money, they wouldn’t either. Second, even if you did, the debt would squash you. Any “prestige” benefit would be offset by your debt payments. Seriously, someone just handed you $100,000 to go to college!

Coolguy, I doubt MIT alums would say they thought the higher tuition is justified by the prestige factor. The education and possibly more important than that, the people you meet during those 4 years is what makes being a student there worthwhile.

Facebook summer interns get $10,000 per month plus free food and lodging. I don’t know which schools these interns attend, but if I had to bet money, I would say there are more going to MIT than U Conn. It’s a small sample, but a glimpse nonetheless of the earnings power of strong engineers. Maybe more compelling evidence is that all the alums I know either directly or through the grapevine had their children apply to MIT.

This is a personal decision. Consider the data and all other information on hand. My best advice is to choose and not look back. Make the most of your resources whether at MIT or a state school.

I think it also depends on the program (and thus FIT).
I went to one school and my wife went to the other. (My wife briefly considered my school.)
I found this thread amusing.

My wife and I talked a lot about our choices of college and she wouldn’t have gone to MIT (she did a pre-pharm program at UConn and then Pharm.D., totaling 6 years). She came from a dirt poor family (zero family contribution), so she had to borrow for her education (she was an out-of-state student although she did have some financial aid and scholarships as she was very good academically – salutatorian). I believe she finished paying off her loans about 6 years after her doctorate.

If there’s a program/major that MIT doesn’t have but that UConn has, like pharmacy/pre-pharm or pre-vet then UConn is hands down better.

TRANSLATION: If your son knows he wants to be a veterinarian or a pharmacist, then go for that program at UConn.

However, the opportunities like UROP and the students at MIT are very unique. If your son wants to do anything technology and engineering related and understands that MIT teaches at an aggressive rate and can handle it, then MIT is great.

Culturally, UConn and MIT are very different institutions and have different values and attitudes.

It also matters what you plan to do with your degree (like if your son aspires to work for NASA → obvious choice: MIT, or if your son wants to get into Investment Banking or wants to “start up a company with friends he met in college”).

(Don’t forget other perks like cross-registering at Harvard! There’s nowhere else in the world where you get 2 world class institutions about 2 miles from each other.)

But I just take that as a matter of fit.

brassratter is right that FB summer interns make a lot of money. So do MSFT summer interns (of course that was computer science majors). And a lot of others. It wasn’t uncommon to see $8k per month for MIT summer interns.

I see that most people try to put it as: (free great state school) vs ($120k and MIT).

It’s not really that easy.

  1. After MIT, we have access to a much wider and active alumni network.
  2. The chances of “the right job” is increased. (On the negative side, some employers might wonder if I’m overqualified for some jobs.)
  3. The chances of having more technically oriented work/more challenging work is increased. (This helps your career. Of course, on the negative side, people might wonder why MIT grads aren’t miracle workers or why it doesn’t take us a tenth of the time it would take a normal person.)
  4. MIT grads tend to have an attitude of “I survived MIT … whatever I’m going to do isn’t rocket science therefore bring it on! I can solve it!” (and it can be overly optimistic)
  5. There are some experiences which money cannot buy.

That being said, $120k is a lot of money.

Actually one of my frat brothers IS a rocket scientist for NASA.

As was my cousin, who went to a CT public and didn’t major in stem. Lol on anecdotes.

OP needs to tell his decision. Last checked in 4/30.

We were in a similar situation…my son was accepted at Cornell, Dartmouth and UCONN honors with free tuition. Visit to Cornell took that school out of the mix. Sticker price at Dartmouth is 74,400 and historically goes up 2-3% each year. We were offered 20k in financial aide. With a great deal of sacrifice we thought we could come up with 25k per year but the rest would be from student loans. April 30th he was firmly in the Dartmouth camp…he had a great experience at Dartmouth accepted students program…I was leaning towards UCONN. He woke up May 1 and decided on UCONN. I woke up on May 1 and thought it should be Dartmouth. He accepted at UCONN. I regret his decision every day, but ultimately it was his decision.
Dartmouth is not MIT. MIT was my son’s first choice. If he had been accepted there he would have went there. There is not much that compares to MIT…for us it would have been worth the debt.


By now OP has decided, but co op at MIT is a way to pay for a large chunk of junior and senior year.
I worked my way though, partially and it was worth it for me. I don’t know that “money accumulation” is
everyone’s goal, but its a personal financial decision, but never underestimate the student’s ability to make
good money over summers. EECS coop at MIT is alive and well. The summer pay is really huge for an MIT student.

U of Conn, not so much.

debt gets one a good credit rating, if one pays it back. Graduating Debt free means
you have NO credit rating. It all depends on the debt level, but $40K over 4 years is doable, $80K
over four years, OK. I would not borrow more than $80K over four years, even for MIT.

If OP major is architecture or a pure science, I might worry as well. Need grad school for those.

Math, Economics, EECS and most engineering will work to take a loan.

This entire thread does not make a lot of sense because MIT has fantastic financial aid, not to mention the paid UROP opportunities and the phenomenal internship opportunities offered to students. MIT considers such factors as other kids in the family and age of parents (impending retirement, etc). In fact, for most people I know, MIT was the cheaper option compared to state schools (for students/families I know in NY, CT, Md, among others). The only situation where this might not be the case is if the parents are wealthy, in which case it isn’t a matter of loans & MIT vs UConn but the value that the parents place on education. Academics at some so called prestigious schools may not be that different from UConn. AT MIT (& CalTech, CMU) they are very different. It’s not all about whether you’ll recoup the financial difference. MIT provides experiences unheard of for students attending UConn. For students with a good fit to MIT, I’d view choosing UConn as almost tragic.