top schools that are not too cutthroat (relatively speaking)

<p>I would consider myself a somewhat competitive person, but I don't like the side of me that comes out when I get extremely competitive. What are some top schools without too much cutthroat competitiveness? (like WIlliams College)</p>

<p>In general, the vibes I got from various colleges was that Midwestern and Western colleges in particular seem to be more laid-back and less cutthroat, even while having great academics. I'd strongly recommend you look into Carleton College as well as maybe the Claremont Colleges (Pomona and Claremont McKenna in particular). All of these schools are very good yet do not give off the cutthroat competitive vibe that Williams, Dartmouth, Amherst, etc. do.</p>

<p>Might look at some Patriot League schools-Bucknell, Holy Cross, Lafayette.</p>

<p>Brown is laid back academically as well (aside from premeds).</p>

<p>Reed college is not competitive (grades aren't even distributed - you have to ask for them).</p>

<p>Western/Midwestern LACs in the USNWR Top 50</p>

<p>Carleton
Centre College
Claremont McKenna
Colorado College
Kenyon
Macalester
Oberlin
Occidental
Pitzer
Pomona
Reed
Scripps
St. Olaf
Whitman</p>

<p>My daughter attends Williams and says it's not at all cutthroat. Her entry did homework and studied together for their common classes.</p>

<p>The OP probably needs to think about what s/he means by "cutthroat" or competitive.
Harvard Law students often study together, but that does not mean it is not a competitive place. It's true that at Reed you ordinarily don't even see your grades, but still, it is a notoriously challenging school.</p>

<p>When we visited a NESCAC college (a very selective school but not one I would have considered overly competitive) I noticed many bulletin board announcements for stress counselling. Maybe any stress there is self-imposed, not due to a "cutthroat" atmosphere ... I really don't know. But this sort of issue is a reason why it is important to visit schools to observe classroom dynamics, dining hall atmosphere, etc., to see for yourself whether you think the place is a good fit. Read the bulletin board material. Talk to grounds crew and other support staff to see if they have a friendly or stand-offish attitude toward students. This was a difference I noticed between some of the schools we visited and the one my S chose.</p>

<p>Dartmouth--being cutthroat or even just bragging about your accomplishments are both major taboos</p>

<p>I'd add Grinnell to tk's list at post #6.</p>

<p>I'm biased, but will second the rp's plug for Carleton. While part of it might just be PR, I've been struck by how consistently Carleton and its students project the image of great academics in an environment where no one takes themselves too seriously. You get this sense, for instance, in the video linked below of the welcoming ceremony for Carleton's new president, who goes out of his way to express the ideal that Carleton be a place where "my success does not come at your expense." So PR or not, it says something to me that Carleton wants to project that image of itself.</p>

<p>Here's the link: <a href="https://apps.carleton.edu/campus/president/meet/event/%5B/url%5D"&gt;https://apps.carleton.edu/campus/president/meet/event/&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/p>

<p>Avoid Cornell. That' all I have to say.</p>

<p>Washington University, St. Louis. </p>

<p>Top academics, Midwestern vibe, gorgeous campus. Not cutthroat.</p>

<p>WUSTL is not cutthroat? LOL that's news to me.</p>

<p>But you might consider some LACs that are notorious for being rigorous but not student to student competitive. IE: Swarthmore, Wesleyan.</p>