So I’m in a very tough situation where I applied to colleges for a degree in Mathematics or Statistics. It turns out, however, that I would like a degree in Engineering. Unfortunately all the schools that offer a well reputed Engineering degree ended up, for all intensive purposes, denying me from admission, with a few… complicated exceptions, which I’ll get into in a couple minutes. Mind that as of now (9:54pm EST on May 1st, 2016) I have approx. 2 hours to make a life changing decision. So I’m left with either starting out at Elon for a general Engineering core and transferring out to finish my degree in the concentration of my choice on their dual-degree engineering major (but I really don’t want to deal with the transferring process) or going to the University of South Carolina (which really is not a good match for me and doesn’t have the engineering concentration for which I am looking, Industrial Engineering, but I can accept a Civil Engineering degree, though not preferred) and getting an engineering degree there in four years. Those are my simple options; now for my complicated - potentially better - options. I was waitlisted from the University of Pittsburgh which guarantees me a spot in their Spring Semester 2017. However, when I called them and asked why they didn’t admit me, their reason kind of… well, pissed me off and I have lost all enthusiasm for Pitt . However, Swanson is one of the best public engineering schools in the country, but they do not guarantee admittance into their school even with a 4.0 GPA in the Arts and Sciences school. That would also require, most likely, a fifth year of college (which is okay as I am in-state and the tuition is not too bad), but I would like my degree in four years. I was also given a guaranteed transfer to Clemson University (which was my top choice, btw) whereby I could then obtain an engineering degree, but I don’t, again, want to deal with transferring. Penn State also admitted me to their Altoona branch campus, but I only really wanted to go to University Park, so that is another instance that would require transferring.
I have visited and like all the schools mentioned here (except for U of SC which I found to be acceptable). Tuition is not a factor and academic quality is my primary factor. Of these options or combinations, which would give me the best academic experience, social experience, and take the shortest time to obtain the degree. Any unique ideas?