Princeton vs. Yale vs. Stanford vs. Harvard


<p>I was accepted to Yale SCEA and am now choosing between Yale, Stanford, Harvard, Princeton, Brown, and Dartmouth '18. I think I am mostly interested in attending one of the first two for a variety of reasons, particularly the combination of top-tier academics alongside social scenes that other top-tier schools seem unable to match.</p>

<p>My question (since this is on the Princeton forum, I'm also posting on other forums) - Why Princeton over the others?</p>

<p>The atmospheres of Harvard/Princeton seem very competitive, not laid-back, not social, etc., which turns me off to both of them. Even just the people in the Facebook group - seemingly more pretentious, more arrogant, and less friendly than the people in some of the other groups. Dartmouth and Brown are more expensive and I can't imagine myself choosing them over the others. </p>

<p>A couple of things about me:</p>

<p>I live in Connecticut, which would make going to school in the northeast much easier. I love California however and would consider myself to be more "chill" in terms of exhibiting a west coast vibe. I may like to end up on the west coast at some point in my life. My girlfriend will be in high school still (CT) and so going to Stanford would make the relationship extremely difficult. My mom also wants me to stay close. I like having access to a city, but don't mind not being directly in one. Proximity to New York, San Fran, and Boston, respectively, are all great assets.</p>

<p>Princeton gave excellent financial aid, Harvard close behind, Stanford's is not great, and I have yet to hear back from Yale. I'm hoping some matching will be done.</p>

<p>I am interested in science/technology stuff (maybe like physics or green energy or something), although I very well might end up going into business/finance. I enjoy the arts immensely - going to concerts, seeing plays, and just generally associating with people interested in these things. I will participate in a cappella in college. I enjoy anything outdoors like skiing and hiking. I enjoy watching sports as well as playing sports recreationally (think intramural). I'm not sure if I plan on being involved in Greek life, but I definitely want to be in a social environment. I also very much value a community atmosphere--I think Stanford and Yale each offer these in different ways. Yale the residential colleges (which I love), Stanford the "bubble" of campus and the unifying sports scene.</p>

<p>I understand this is all splitting hairs, but I would be grateful for any input.</p>

<p>Thank y'all in advance!</p>

<p>Go to youtube and search under Princeton arch sing</p>

<p>Well, I’m not sure where you got the idea that Princeton has a competitive, not social vibe. As far as I can tell (I attended the school, as well as two of my children, including a current sophomore), Princeton is fundamentally a collaborative, very happy, and social community. The campus is beautiful, and while the academics are challenging, I can’t imagine that they are less so at Yale (in fact, since Yale students have to take more courses, Yale might even be slightly more stressful academically). Princeton’s ORFE program is well-known for placing graduates in business/finance and the computer science, math, economics and science departments are exceptionally strong.</p>

<p>In terms of the social aspect of things, the campus is buzzing with so many activities that it would be hard to stay in your room. Obviously, Princeton has eating clubs, but half of them are sign-in clubs where anyone can join. Moreover, unlike many Greek situations, Princeton’s eating clubs are easily accessible with many parties open to everyone on campus. And I know a lot about Princeton’s arts community and this is an area that the University is putting a lot of resources into. It is developing an Arts Neighborhood, and on any given weekend, there are several student theater productions, dance recitals and concerts going on (it’s impossible to see everything). McCarter Theater, a very strong regional theater, is located on campus, and several productions have moved to Broadway. And, just like Yale and Harvard, Princeton’s a cappella groups have been around a long time and have storied traditions. </p>

<p>You have amazing choices and you really can’t go wrong - I would encourage you to visit Princeton if you can. It is a vibrant campus, but it also does have a sort of “bubble” feel about it, although NYC is easily reachable via an on campus train.</p>

<p>Yale, Stanford , Princeton looks like the three you are considering. Yes, Stanford would be great but you would be far from home and FA is not great. Princeton is great for your academic interests…Yale does seem to be the most fit for you. You need to balance academic strength vs proximity (and social scene), it seems to me. If possible, go to all three admit days and decide…At the undergrad level, all the colleges give you ample opportunities to shine…So make sure to find where you can fit in “socially” and be happy…Because then you will also shine academically.</p>

<p>As an undergraduate, you will probably get more attention at Princeton. (Undergraduate Focus)</p>

<p>Turning down Harvard for non-engineering reasons is always a bad decision IMHO. Its undergraduates are simply at another level compared to Princeton and Stanford.</p>

<p>Lol, what^? Not even close</p>

<p>To me you are absolutely the Princeton student. It’s the most social of the technological schools top schools. And the one with the greatest integration between Engineering and ORF. Do not discount Jeff Bezos, Meg Whitman, former Google CEO etc. </p>