West Coast Engineering options, 3.5 GPA (uw)

I agree with your general assessment and that different schools, even of a kind, can have more or less school … spirit for lack of a better word. Cougs love being Cougs. That said, you may be underestimating the ability of a non-Greek kid to find his community there. I don’t think it’s Greek or commuter. We know plenty of kids who were happy there w/o the Greek system.

@coffee2022 answered the test question, and I think I understand. That said, if he winds up with really strong scores, especially in math, you might want to submit them. It might be a deciding factor. IDK.

Good luck. I’ll be interested to hear back from you what happens and what he ultimately decides to do.

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One add to that: as I’m sure you know, Greek is pretty big at WSU too.

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It is non-local frosh who must live on campus at SDSU, although it looks like about 70% of frosh actually do live on campus there.
https://housing.sdsu.edu/resources/requirement

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Plenty of PNW kids at Utah - new fancy honors dorm, advisors and like you said amazing access to the slopes and hiking. A bit more car dependent - we hear it called the new “Boulder” - worth a more in-depth look and guessing your counselor at your son’s private school should be helpful too with your list and stats from past applicants. SLC has everything now - from
coffee to pubs - not your old Utah.

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I don’t think Mines is more of a reach than CU. The two schools attract similar applicants, but CU is better known for aero and Mines for petroleum.

Another option is Colorado Mesa in Grand Junction. It is a WUE school, except for engineering. The engineering degree is actually issued from CU so the student is a general student at Mesa until junior year (gets 2 years of WUE tuition) and then switches to engineering for 2 years. There are some other merit awards available for those years. Great skiing, not so much surfing.

U of Wyoming has Brown and Gold scholarship which replaces WUE. Top award is 150% instate tuition if WUE but other amounts available too. The Brown and Gold Commitment
There is also a $2500 engineering dept scholarship. Good skiing, not much surfing.

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My friend’s three kids all commuted to UW and lived in Bellevue. None were in Greek. Maybe UW is similar to UCLA in terms of commuting and spirit but without the international reputation.

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Equally true of Gonzaga, Santa Clara, USD. Can always apply and see whether the Merit Gods smile. Good to have a cutoff agreed upon ahead of time though, cost-wise.

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My bad on Claremont McKenna…got it off the best engineering school in CA ranking from niche…sorry about that.

I went schools the OP won’t get into - because they specifically asked for West Coast reaches - I don’t see them getting into USC/UW, etc. but was trying to answer the question asked which was reaches.

Thanks for the correction.

If you want a CA private, consider U of Pacific - I don’t think a reach.

btw - CSM may be a slight reach but it’s not unattainable - and I agree with the person before who said CU Boulder is a great program too with a different focus than Mines and your more traditional university.

While the student wants to stay out west, why not a Texas Tech or a Mizzou Science & Tech. You’re flying anyway - and TX (West) is surprisingly close to Colorado.

With air transportation, why not find the right program. A location in and of itself, other than if you can drive or it has a special meaning to you for weather, recreation, mountains…well today we have such efficient transportation - maybe a program in a state you didn’t consider - like Ohio, Minnesota or New Mexico might actually be the one with the best feel or comfort. Just food for thought.

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We are also in WA. Colorado Mines was S19s top choice and he was admitted. We were told at an in-person dinner presentation (remember those?) by a Mines administrator that although they weren’t a WUE school, their cost would end up being equivalent. Cost is critical for us. It wasn’t even close and we had to reluctantly decline admission. S19 was also admitted to UW, but not to engineering. He was sure he wanted engineering, so we also declined there. He is now a junior in civil engineering at WSU. He absolutely loves the community feel of WSU. It’s such a supportive, spirit-filled community. Contrary to what someone wrote above, he doesn’t feel a big Greek presence on campus. Very satisfied with WSU here.

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I am finding this thread to be super helpful as my S23 is interested in engineering with a slightly higher GPA from a very competitive high school in the West coast/southwest region. My DS’ 1420 SAT score gives us an idea of possibilities. What he is looking for is different than our other child - a non-STEM kid with a higher GPA and lower SAT score who found her “right college fit” at an easy-admit WUE university.
We’re interested in learning more about how the college application process works out for your child and your child’s impressions of the campuses visited and their engineering labs.

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Thanks for sharing about WSU. I keep hearing such great things. Just like you just said, supportive, spirit-filled community. All the support would be helpful for getting through
demanding Engineering curriculum! We are going to visit and see what S22 thinks of it. And the price is right! Glad your son is happy and thriving there.

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we are actually thinking of scratching these super expensive privates from the list. Will cost $70+K per year. Nuts.

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They would be worth considering if the prospect of merit was higher. In the absence of that, I’d probably scratch them.

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Yes, full pay is pretty breathtaking. You mentioned that your son is strongly considering a gap year. If his grades rebound this year, he might be better positioned for merit in the next cycle. Maybe better to nail down a well-chosen public U where he can defer his acceptance, and then do a little merit-hunting next fall if he still thinks he might prefer one of the CA/PNW Catholic U’s where merit would be a must. (Or he may decide he’s happy with the public U and leave it at that! He can get a quality engineering education either way.)

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With a high test score, a wildly optimistic merit estimate could bring the cost of Gonzaga down to around 40, SCU upper 50s, USD somewhere in between. (Just ballpark guesses based on what I vaguely recall that a couple of my kids were offered, though I didn’t go back and check.) When the score comes in, try their NPCs, as they sometimes include a merit estimate. I’d check Naviance scattergrams too.

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Oct 2nd SAT is in. 1410 overall, 750 Math, 660 Verbal. We were just hoping he’d hit 1300+. What a relief!

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@skkseattle
Okay, maybe I tend to gravitate to the student’s EC’s, but I really think he will fit PLNU:

I’ve had several students get scholarships to PLNU. It is sponsored by the Nazarene church, and does have “chapel” requirements, so that’s something you have to look into. It is in San Diego, on the Point (Point Loma). It really is on the “beach”.
The students line up their surfboards in the halls of their dorms.
The reason I suggest it is because it is a well kept secret in the San Diego community and there are engineering jobs around the Point, the harbor, and in nearby Naval facilities. Just a thought.

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To elaborate on the above and the Nazarene Church/chapel requirements:
PLNU is a conservative evangelical university where classes are explicitely faith-based. While it may not matter much for the core Engineering classes, it’s an important consideration in terms of fit and for the non-Engineering classes.
Chapel attendance is mandatory three times a week for spiritual growth. There is a covenant that requires students to abstain from alcohol, tobacco, legal and illegal drugs, as well as premarital sex, that students must sign but also write an essay about.
The full covenant is here:

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Chapel required 3x per week and no sex would be deal breakers, I’m afraid…

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I think it is good to recognize this early in the search.

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