opinions: Cornell v. JHU?

<p>Anyone care to comment on Cornell A&S versus Johns Hopkins (Krieger) for a prospective biology major, probably not pre-med? D has visited both, and stronglyy preferred Cornell----very put off by the pre-med crowd at the JHU bio presentation. My main concern as parent is the academic aspects, for a science student. Anyone have any misgivings about turning down JHU for Cornell? Thanks! I know we are down to the wire :)</p>

<p>They're both good, well respected schools. My son got into both (but for engineering). I would definitely say she should go with fit. If she preferred the fit at Cornell, then why not go with Cornell?</p>

<p>I agree; fit has been most important to me, as the parent. It is just that I have encountered surprise from people hearing she will likely choose Cornell.</p>

<p>I think JHU's undergrad "science" expertise is overrated. If nothing else its a competitive pressure cooker full of high-stung students looking to go to med school. There's a lot of deflation. I think Cornell is the clear choice.</p>

<p>That is my thinking as well, especially since for a kid who really does not know if she wants to go to med school vs do lab research. If she wants to later go for a PhD, she needs to really learn science in college, including the content of the entry level and other courses required for pre-med that overlap with bio requirements, not just survive some ghastly hazing experience.</p>

<p>You will find a high percentage of premeds at both places. It's impossible to avoid them at places like JHU or Cornell. However, if she feels Cornell's the better fit, then the choice is clear.</p>

<p>I would say no matter what you want to do Cornell would be a better overall experience than JHU.</p>

<p>I agree. I think Cornell is the better choice overall.</p>

<p>Both are very high quality academic institutions. I would think Cornell might have an edge for someone with interests in botany and agriculture. I would look mainly at the issue of fit. It sounds as if your D strongly prefers Cornell, although I certainly did not understand your brief explanation. I would think that would end the consideration. Both schools do have very different vibes. My D had a more negative feeling for Cornell: too isolated, too cold, too spreadout, and too large. She also believed there was a more active Greek and drinking culture but that was based mainly on rumors and a few trips into Ithaca. She is also very content with the lacrosse and amateur athletics at JHU and was not interested in the big time sports enthusiasm at Cornell. For my D, everything worked out for the best. She was not accepted at Cornell and is very happy at JHU. She can enjoy going to class in flipflops while the Cornell students are slogging through the snow.</p>

<p>my son is in the same position JHU vs Cornell for engineering. He was accepted into BME at JHU but isn't sure what to do. He has plus and minus for both. Any Suggestions from previous years students? Only 3 more days to decide.</p>

<p>A hope your son was able to visit both. If so, he should be able to list out a lot of pros and cons based on his interests. Check the threads on CC. I know the Hopkins forum has input from admissions and links to some good blogs. I would guess Cornell has the same. A little fresh information might help. At a certain point, like real soon, the gut needs to take over. Does he like snow? Big time sports? Does he want to get off campus on a Saturday and tour the Smithsonian museum? Does he have good friends going to either?</p>

<p>The great thing is your son can't go wrong.</p>

<p>Yes, I was vague about why my D prefers Cornell. She did visit both JHU and Cornell, both during open houses for admitted students. D had a negative reaction to the students and atmosphere at JHU. Not a single current or admitted student spoke to her at JHU, but she felt totally welcomed and actually bonded with a girl at Cornell. At JHU, we had trouble even getting directions or getting anyone to speak with us, other than people at the admissions table in the middle of one of the quads. I am more assertive than D (from NY; she is West Coast born) but at Cornell, she didn't need my pushy skills at all. She was on her own and fit right in. At JHU, she kept me with her, but my pushiest skills paled in comparison with the predominant modus of the prospective parents (and kids) we encountered. Lastly, at the JHU bio majors presentation, she was appalled. Helicopter parents and palpably anxious pre-meds entirely dominated the "discussion", which had nothing to do with biology, and everything to do with planning one's future at JHU as a pre-med, gaining an advantage, etc. The professor who spoke was rather frankly bitter about the pre-med "gunner" issues he deals with, as a basic scientist. My D said she would have been mortified if she were one of the kids whose parent grilled this poor guy about how they could get their kid ahead, but the worst part was---they didn't mind at all! I have to admit, even I was put off, and I'm an MD, in academic medicine. I do have well suppressed memories of those types, but in my day, the cutthroats wielded their own knives.</p>

<p>PS: now that I read my own post, yes, that should end the discussion!</p>

<p>Interesting. My son chose Hopkins over Cornell, and has never regretted it. The size, the dreadful winters, and the overwhelming grayness during most of the months completely turned him off to Cornell. My daughter went to law school at Cornell, so my son got to see the school in all seasons, as well as witness the challenging winter travel conditions.
My son's friends at Hopkins are teriffic kids, and the administration has been an absolutely standout, on all levels. Since Cornell and Hopkins are both ranked identically in terms of peer assessment, and are often ranked together overall, standing never was an issue for him. So sorry your daughter had a negative experience. However, I am quite sure that she will find her niche, and enjoy Cornell, very much.</p>

<p>I remember some pretty bad experiences taking courses with premeds at another school. Fortunately, my D has not taken any bio courses so she has missed that at Hopkins. As I remember, she did have an interesting admitted students overnight. It seemed that admitted students day falls right before exams for most courses. The host students were nice, but busy, and the kids were all dropped off, with some escorts - to watch an Orioles game. My D figured that told her a lot about priorities for Hopkins students. </p>

<p>As a young person, I survived 3 Binghamton winters and 7 Cleveland winters. I had my fill of snow, cold and gray skies, but I lived through it and at the time didn't mind it all that much. If your D has decided Cornell is the best choice, then it is.</p>

<p>I'm sure she'll be fine. Bio majors at Cornell are pretty chill, even the premeds ;)</p>

<p>I congratulate your daughter on her choice. As I recall cross-admit data, over 90% of students who are fortunate enough to choose between Cornell and Hopkins choose Cornell. Ithaca's weather is not much different than Boston's. (This year was, I admit, terrible throughout the Northeast, including Baltimore.) It will be an interesting aspect of her college life compared to California, one that will also add to the experience. I have lived in major world capitals as well, and found plenty to do in Ithaca, especially of course on campus, but also in the surrounding region.</p>

<p>Cornell offers a much wider range of courses, a much broader and more interesting group of students. It is terrific for premed and, anecdotally, is less full of students whose motivation to strive for medical school does not arise primarily from parental pressure.</p>

<p>These are both terrific schools and your daughter will have great opportuniites from either. The comparisons are pretty meaningless based on what you have written so far about the two visits to the schools. It sounds pretty clear from your posts that Cornell is a better fit. I"m not sure why you are agonizing over this. Cornell is a great choice.</p>

<p>"As I recall cross-admit data, over 90% of students..." where's that data?</p>

<p>I know plenty who chose Hopkins over Cornell...including my brother and rightfully so.</p>

<p>and when I was visiting colleges I wouldve done the same...didnt apply to Cornell though..</p>

<p>There is one published study. This was a study published by the National Bureau for Economic Research in 2004 using data from several years before. This study looked at matriculation choices for 3000 some high achieving students. In order to make sense out of this small survey, the NBER paper used game theory statistics to analyze the data and to rank 100 some colleges and universities. The results were pretty predictable and actually matched the USNWR rankings fairly closely. The Ivies all did well with Harvard well in the lead. There were a few surprises. Brigham Young was ranked pretty high, probably because many Mormons prefer this over almost any other choice. The engineering and technical schools did well because students are not likely to chose a lower ranked non-technical school. Raw data was not published and it is not possible to determine how many students would prefer one school vs another. The publication did include a large spreadsheet. The spreadsheet indicated the statistical probabilities that the rankings were reliable. For the comparison of Cornell and JHU, it was more than 90% certain that Cornell is a more popular choice than JHU. In fact the actual number was 99%. That does not mean that 99% of students would prefer Cornell. It means that it is 99% certain that more students would prefer Cornell than would prefer JHU. </p>

<p>Sorry, but I do not have a link to this study. I do have a copy on my computer at work. I guess it reflects prestige and I am sure there are some people who would like to use the data to argue that one Ivy or other elite school outranks another. I personally never found this study to be of much interest.</p>