Safe (not safety) Schools

<p>It is officially known as midtown, not that it matters much. Atlanta is so developed now, it all runs together. 30 years ago, there was actually a small separation.</p>

<p>It is not the safest area, although I think the campus is as safe as most. There is no way I would walk alone after dark off campus, male or female. Does GT have escort services within a certain radius of the campus? Many schools do now.</p>

<p>One does not need to stay sheltered forever. A smart kid can learn to take a public bus, ensure personal safety by avoiding certain streets or blocks, and taking reasonable precautions when in an urban area.</p>

<p>I have nieces and nephews who have grown up in suburbia and I worry about their future as adults. Unless one plans to live in a gated community, commute by car to a suburban office park with a security guard at the entrance, and shop in Whole Foods, how can you spend your life avoiding cities and/or less sanitized neighborhoods?</p>

<p>blossom - excellent point! My wife and I talked about that very thing in sending our D to an urban school. So many kids will get their first job in a major downtown location, it is much better to learn to handle the ropes now, where there is a safety net to ease the way.</p>

<p>Thanks for all the responses!!!</p>

<p>And just to clarify - I do have some street smarts, although not as sharp as the others :D So I am not asking for complete and utter safety (I've been to Stanford, and yes it seems VERY safe). I'd actually prefer a place a bit more lively than Palo Alto, which is why I looked at a lot of schools that have urban areas nearby. But my main concern is if it's going to be too big of a shock when I arrive as a freshman, further compounding the possible problems that come with adjusting to college in a new country. </p>

<p>So just for the first 2 years (?), while I make some new friends, I'd like to feel at least some sort of security. I'll definitely be staying in a dorm those years, so I'm just asking about the immediate environment (i.e. the campus + 2 mile radius around it I guess? How far should I be concerned with?) I DO NOT want to go to a school in the middle of nowhere, no matter how safe :D</p>

<p>2bruins: May I ask where your S goes to school? Also, UCLA is a bit pricey (like UIUC) but I do like it. Do you know if the school offers some financial assistance to internationals, like through merit aid? I was able to drive through CalTech before, and from what I saw it seems to be in the middle of a city...? Like for Stanford and UCLA, you can feel the college town but in CalTech I didn't... though I guess my memory's a bit hazy now haha.</p>

<p>jc40: Where did your D go eventually? And what other schools did she look at? About UT, is it really hard to get in because the majority of the slots are reserved for Texans? I heard about something along those lines...</p>

<p>Oh, and I'm not looking at single sex colleges... not for me. </p>

<p>Anyone know anything about UMN Twin Cities, UWash, UW Madison?</p>

<p>All of those are in urban areas with some crime problems. I am a big fan of urban universities, and I generally think people's crime fears are overblown. But if you are really concerned -- about your sheltered life, your adjustment to a new country/culture -- and you want an environment that looks and feels safe and welcoming, then you really have to cross all but a handful of the urban schools off your list. UCLA might be OK, but it's hard to think of another one. Northwestern or WashU St. Louis, maybe -- they're both in nice neighborhoods on the edge of big cities.</p>

<p>Stanford, Cornell, Princeton, Cal Tech, Purdue, UIUC, Penn State, Rose-Hulman.</p>

<p>UW Madison would be OK. I don't see you at UMN.</p>

<p>Madison not very urban. I think JHS nailed it pretty well. I would just repeat that crime stats for Tulane and a radius around the school (1 mile I think) are similar to Wash U and many others mentioned. Downtown New Orleans is only about 3 miles, but seems worlds away as far as this issue is concerned, quite frankly. But again, unless she is going for 1 of those 2 engineering majors I mention in post #4, moot point.</p>

<p>I don't think she is insisting on urban- just more lively than Palo Alto, which I think Madison is. I think UTexas would be a good fit if she could get in with enough financial aid.</p>

<p>You are probably right, MOWC. But then West Lafayette off the table too, lol. But I agree things going on in Madison most of the time, and certainly more going on in Austin, if the music scene is important to her.</p>

<p>
[quote]
One of my main concerns is safety because admittedly, I've been kind of sheltered my whole life; I never took public transportation for one.

[/quote]
</p>

<p>Is this because you're not near a city / area with public transportation, or that you haven't made an opportunity to do so?</p>

<p>This will sound silly, but I saw tremendous growth in my D once she had a volunteer (now paying) job downtown and took the train plus a bus from our comfy suburban area. She now has more of a sense of street smarts which I think is a very good thing for suburban kids to have. I've seen that to a lesser extent with S who takes the train to a different suburb for a volunteer opportunity. There's just something about navigating on your own on public transportation that is different from driving everywhere.</p>

<p>Full disclosure I am not a GT alum.
GT is not very urban. The campus has a very parklike atmosphere. It is very, very defined from Atlanta. We were VERY surprised at how insulated it is. I took S2 hoping to mark it OFF the list as we are OOS. He does not want an urban campus. He loved it.
Regarding safety, I would be less comfortable at UMCP, but that's just me.</p>

<p>blueiguana - Well, not that many campuses (compared to how many there are in the country) are in and of themselves urban. NYU, Northeastern, some others. GT, with its proximity to downtown and Buckhead, is definitely considered an urban campusm, not to mention that in 2 blocks you are at the bookstore on a main street of the city. Urban refers to its proximity to the city, not how much green space (or lack thereof) the campus may have.</p>

<p>Have you looked at Rose-Huhlman in Terre Haute, Indiana?</p>

<p>^^ It was simply my opinion. My son had not wanted an urban campus, but was very surprised that GT didn't feel like he was in the middle of Atlanta. It was simply our experience. I think when people are talking about an 'urban' or 'rural' campus it is somewhat subjective, so while your definition of urban refers to the proximity of the city, the 'perception' of the person is far more relevant.</p>

<p>OK, but I can virtually guarantee you that 99.9% of the people on here, when they say they want an "urban campus", mean they want one that is in a city, not one that is a city itself. It isn't the perception of the person that is relevant in this case, it is the definition of an urban campus. Since we are using different definitions of the term, the discussion is useless. As would any discussion you would have on here if you use that definition, with very few exceptions. Put another way, if you told someone on here "Oh, go to Georgia Tech, it is not an urban campus at all", they would come back and wonder what in the world you were talking about, unless you were very careful to tell them your definition of an urban campus.</p>

<p>...I believe I did</p>

<p>"GT is not very urban. The campus has a very parklike atmosphere. It is very, very defined from Atlanta. We were VERY surprised at how insulated it is."</p>

<p>Not quite sure what your problem with my opinion is...its simply an opinion.</p>

<p>I want the OP to come to Vanderbilt.</p>

<p>Oregon State University. Good Engineering, Small town, mid sized University and very safe.</p>

<p>To the OP: My S just graduated from Cornell (and is returning to pursue a Masters later this month), an excellent program on a very safe campus, but I didn't mention it as an option for you earlier because other posters had. As for UCLA (my alma mater, as you can tell from my screen name), the State of California in general and the UC system in particular is having serious budget problems, so I don't believe that much if any merit aid is available, especially for internationals. You are correct that CalTech doesn't have much of the typical "college life" feel, because it is an extremely small school with no big-time sports program, but CalTech has a top notch engineering program on par with MIT, UC Berkeley, and Stanford.</p>

<p>OP...The publics that I know of that are difficult/competitive for OOS students to gain acceptance to, in safe areas, and have solid engineering programs are UT, UCB, UVA, and UNC. (There are other great publics like UMich that are a little easier to get into for the OOS student.) I wouldn't be discouraged from the odds, though. You never know unless you try, right? BTW...you asked where my D decided to go -- she'll be a Wahoo at UVA in the fall (OOS). Charlottesville is an adorable college town and the perfect size. Also, most people will agree it's hard to find a prettier campus than Mr. Jefferson's university. Good luck!</p>