UIUC Gies, BU Questrom, UW-Madison, or Whitman Syracuse

hi, i’ve recently got accepted into:

-UIUC Gies, honors = 50k/year
-Boston University, CGS program (two years of general studies then transfer into business school) = 80k/year
-UW-Madison, pre-business in College of L&S = 55k/year
-Syracuse, Whitman = 75k/year

i do not qualify for financial aid and did not receive any merit for any of these schools. i’m deciding between these schools to study finance and maybe environmental science/environmental engineering. UIUC is affordable, honors, and i have direct admission. BU CGS is very expensive, includes a freshman gap semester, and won’t take concentrated classes until junior year. however, BU is reputable, location is perfect, and connections. UW-Madison, will need to transfer after freshman year, affordable, location. not sure where their business school ranks though. lastly, Syracuse i have direct admission and it has a pretty good reputation. but, very expensive and kinda in the middle of nowhere.

what are your thoughts! thank you

Are your parents willing to pay that much? 200k for college sounds high.

I would go with the cheapest option. As a potential finance major, surely you can see how saving money is in everyone’s best interest.


If I understand correctly, you are looking for a solid business school.

You truly have two options, UIUC and Syracuse. Note that you are closer to business at UW Madison than BU (GS is a 2-year grind and many don’t make it through).

If the money matters, choose UIUC. If it does not, Syracuse is an equal level. I agree on BU, but not the program you were admitted into.


yeah i agree, 80k is insane. my parents are willing to pay, but i think the cheapest option is the way to go

yeah, i really want to go to Boston (after being rejected from my dream school BC) and i got into BU. so part of me really wants to live out my dream, however, i feel like BU would be more of an option if I was a direct admit to their business school. especially when considering cost, i don’t think it’s worth spending 160k on taking courses not geared towards my major.

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If money is an issue and depending on your GPA, you can still get into Arizona if you had an unweighted 4.0, you’d get $35K vs. $37K tuition.

If you had a B or two, you will get $30K vs. $37K tuition.

it’s an easy app - you can even use common app. You’ll save a lot of money.

None of those schools will get you a wall street seat, so if money an issue and you want a solid finance and environmental engineering option, you’d save a ton of $$.

It seems like - if money was a factor, you either missed the right schools to apply to or perhaps you didn’t get in.

Good luck.

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thank you so much! i can afford all these schools and i even got some pretty good scholarships from other schools. when talking to my parents they seem a little less worried than i am when it comes to the cost, and i don’t want them paying 80k a year if they don’t have to. so i just needed some other opinions if it’s worth going to a more ‘prestigious’ school for the higher price tag.

I think all four are fine with UIUC being the best. By far. Not sure about your minor.

My only concern about Illinois is, in my (not everyone’s opinion), the campus is dreadful - really ugly. It’d depress me.

It’s way over the others though that you mentioned.

Good luck.


If the money does not really matter, then BU is great. Plan for a 2-year challenge academically, but commit to excellence - and once you make it through you will be a stronger student because of GS. Boston is the best college city in the world, many would argue - so do it. As an aside, I know a number of very successful people that came out of that program. One recently sold his beverage company to Snapple for $800 million. Like you, he did not get into business out of HS, but paid his dues in GS (use to be basic studies) and continued in school of management.

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Take direct admit: UIUC Gies or Syracuse Whitman.
The former is very large (although honors alleviates this), strong academically, pretty rural, decent college town, 2 hours to Chicago and pull in that region; the latter has more “private amenities”, much more rah-rah, smaller, urban, pull in New England and to NYC/DC.

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