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UC Davis or U. of Minnesota for ChemE?

LarryMLarryM Registered User Posts: 19 New Member
My daughter has been accepted to both. She thinks she'd be much happier attending Davis, but UMN has a top-rated ChemE program. Would attending Davis (an excellent school overall, but ranked lower in her major) put her at a significant disadvantage in applying for top grad schools? From what I hear many grad schools consider things like GPA, research activity, recommendations from profs, and GRE scores to be far more important than the undergrad school the applicant attended. I don't want her to attend a school where she might be miserable, especially if it's not necessary for her long-term academic career.

Replies to: UC Davis or U. of Minnesota for ChemE?

  • SybyllaSybylla Registered User Posts: 1,438 Senior Member
    edited April 26
    Is UCD direct entry to chen? Uminn is not, are her stats and APs on the higher end of CSE entrants?
  • facadencefacadence Registered User Posts: 24 New Member
    edited April 26
    If she seems to like UCD better, she should go to UCD. ChemE at UMN will mean nothing if she doesn't do well in her classes because she isn't happy there. College is what she makes of it, if she goes to a higher-ranked university but doesn't take full advantage of the opportunities it may offer, that makes her less appealing a candidate as opposed to someone who did do the maximum at a lower-ranked university.
  • LarryMLarryM Registered User Posts: 19 New Member
    As far as I know, she's been admitted to ChemE at Davis, although as with many schools students have to maintain a certain GPA in order to stay enrolled in their major.

    We're also considering this: On USNWR's list of Top Public Schools, UC Davis is actually rated quite a bit higher than UMN (#10 vs. #26). It's just that UMN's ChemE program in particular is rated very high. That means that if our daughter should ever decide to change her major (as many students do), there would be no good reason for her to attend UMN over Davis.
  • LilyMoonLilyMoon Registered User Posts: 1,832 Senior Member
    My daughter turned down schools that ranked higher in her major to go to UC Davis. As in your situation, those universities were ranked lower overall. I feel that her happiness and the fit of the school were the more important factors. There is also the issue you mentioned about the possibility of her changing majors, which I think there is a good chance of happening. I want her to be at the school that she will have the most chance for success in every aspect of the college experience.
  • LadeeDiLadeeDi Registered User Posts: 36 Junior Member
    My D went through the same thing before she chose Davis. She was accepted at higher caliber universities for her major (UCLA, U and U of Michigan), but they were not a fit for her. She felt strongly that UC Davis was a fit, and she is doing so well in her second year - researching, exploring internships for Fall quarter and she made the Dean's list this year. My son went through the same exercise this year when he chose his college. So above all else, that is the question to answer. What university is the best fit for your D? Also, have you toured both universities? It is hard to answer this question without spending some time on campus. Davis and U of Minnesota are so different, especially the weather!
  • Banker1Banker1 Registered User Posts: 284 Junior Member
    My D saw the rankings for each of these schools. She visited both and also is interested in ChemE but doesn't know her plans beyond earning her bachelors. After a campus visit described here: http://talk.collegeconfidential.com/university-minnesota-twin-cities/1985070-2017-admitted-student-visit-notes.html#latest
    she was able to eliminate UMN. It wasn't because of rankings but rather fit. She learned she prefers colleges that are still large but within smaller cities such as UC Davis.
  • LarryMLarryM Registered User Posts: 19 New Member
    Thank you @Banker1; I had PM'd you to ask why your D had decided against UMN and that answers my question. I think my D would probably feel the same way.
  • LarryMLarryM Registered User Posts: 19 New Member
    Great writeup on your visit to UMN, @Banker1. Thank you!
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