Redlands v. Kenyon

It’s almost time to make my decision, and I feel like I’m being torn in half. I love both of these schools, for different reasons, and I’m struggling to choose.

I want to be a writer, and I know that Kenyon is probably a better writing school. However, if I attend Redlands, I’ll likely take the Johnston route–I love the idea of self-driven education that Johnston promotes, and I want to study a wide variety of subjects. Honestly, I’m a bit afraid of the academic rigor at Kenyon–the students seemed more stressed about their classes when I visited Kenyon than when I visited Redlands.

I felt more at home when I visited Kenyon, just because everyone I talked to seemed like a bookish nerd. It also felt like a more welcoming school for conservatives. However, I’m not sure I want to be completely in my comfort zone at college–I want my worldview to be challenged, and I feel it would be easier to find that experience at Redlands.

Of course, I like the weather at Redlands much more than the weather at Kenyon. I love seeing the mountains dominating the skyline, and I love the idea of being fairly close to the beach. But that doesn’t really have much to do with the quality of education I’ll receive. Should I even be considering weather/geography in this decision?

Any insight/discussion would be appreciated.

Is there a difference regarding cost of attendance? Travel cost? I would think it would be difficult to pass up Kenyon’s writing program. Location is important, however, you aren’t crazy to consider that factor. But wow- I’m impressed you think so highly of Redlands that it is in contention with Kenyon!