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Hello? Anyone here?

Soonermom95Soonermom95 Registered User Posts: 230 Junior Member
edited September 2013 in University of Oklahoma
I would love to see this forum get some activity. My son is heading to OU in the fall of 2013. While we are from OK and my husband is an alum, OU was never on my son's radar until they sent us the NM info packet. He was hooked after our first visit. I didn't want to like it. I really didn't. (I can't help it. All these years of hearing "Boomer Sooner" over and over...and over and over, just about did me in.) However, I was so impressed after our first visit that I converted. I made my decision before our son did. LOL!

If you're peeking in, say "hello".
Post edited by Soonermom95 on
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Replies to: Hello? Anyone here?

  • WoolScarvesWoolScarves Registered User Posts: 209 Junior Member
    Hi! I too will be going to OU this fall on the NM scholarship. I really enjoyed my visit. What's your son majoring in? And where is he going to live, honors or the Towers? I'm going to live in the Towers because the honors college dorm setting was just too small and I want to be closer to a wide range of my classmates. Also, there's a NM in the towers, which is perfect. Allows me to be around things, but in an environment with bright kids with hopefully a quiet study environment. If your son is living in Towers and wants a roommate who doesn't suck, let me know and we can maybe figure it out, haha. Also, where do you come from?
  • Soonermom95Soonermom95 Registered User Posts: 230 Junior Member
    WoolScarves...Congratulations on your decision. I've taked to some parents of current NMS at OU. Without exception, they say that their kids are very happy there. I really think OU offers the best of both worlds. Have you applied to the honors college? My son was very impressed with it. It was a huge factor in his decision.

    He chose honors housing. The smaller, quieter community feeling appealed to him more than the towers. He doesn't have a roommate, so if he changes his mind on housing, I'll let you know.

    He's likely going to major in psych and music performance. What about you? We are from NE Oklahoma...not too far. Where are you coming from?
  • WoolScarvesWoolScarves Registered User Posts: 209 Junior Member
    Yes, I applied and was accepted. My visit to the honors college was very nice (Mrs. Schaffer (I'm sure I'm butchering her name) in particular was fantastic. I need to write her a thank you e-mail). I just mean that I don't think I really want to have my dorm there.

    I'm coming from St. Louis, MO. So, a bit longer of a drive, but nothing unbearable.

    I'm sure my parents would've liked to talk to some other NMS parents, but our school doesn't send many kids to OU. We send a horde to Mizzou every year, but also a pretty good chunk to Bama, Iowa, and Arkansas. I think our GCs just don't lay out OU as an option enough. It also tends not to have as good of OOS merit aid as the other schools.

    And that sounds like a really good double major. I've read a couple studies on music in the brain and they've all been really interesting. I'm going to be doing Chemical Engineering with a pre-med track. I'd like to be a doctor, but I know how difficult it is and how much work it is and as a senior in high school, I don't know if I can trust myself to do the work required to become a good doctor, so I'm leaving myself the option to do something else that I'd love if I decide not to heal the entire world.

    What in particular did you and your son like about OU and what other schools did you consider?
  • Soonermom95Soonermom95 Registered User Posts: 230 Junior Member
    He considered Wash U, U of Chicago, Oberlin, Oklahoma State (simply b/c of proximity and NM scholarship) and Univ. of Tulsa. We visited only the Oklahoma schools. We had planned to visit the others, but after our OU visit and crunching numbers, he decided to skip the others and take OU's offer. Grad school is in his future, and he decided it was wise to save his student debt for grad school. He doesn't feel like he's "settling" with OU, though. We all came away feeling like he will thrive there (as I'm sure you will), and will have many opportunities.

    What did we like about OU? A lot, actually. We thought the campus was beautiful and laid out nicely. He was impressed with the music department, as music is a very big part of his life, and will be a big part of his education. There are many, varied opportunities for participation in orchestras, bands, etc. He, too, was impressed with Dr. Shaeffer and the honors college. We all really like the "college within a university" feeling it gave us and feel that it offers the best of both worlds. He was impressed with the undergraduate research opportunities he will have in psychology.

    Also, he is a debater, and OU has a nationally recognized, champion debate team, so that's a big draw for him. OU is unique in that they have full time debate staff. President Boren is a big supporter of the debate program and placed it under the honors college "umbrella", and is generous with funding the program.

    We all appreciate the National Scholars program and the support you guys (and girls) will have there. The services they provide make the scholarship even more attractive.

    Oh, and let's not forget the food. That was the cherry on top. ;-)

    Why did you choose OU?
  • WoolScarvesWoolScarves Registered User Posts: 209 Junior Member
    Really quick, I just want to remind everyone that this doesn't have to just be a conversation between SoonerMom and I, feel free to chime in.

    Anyway, I briefly considered WashU too, because I've been there numerous times (a couple research projects and my NM qualifying SAT) and loved it. The chancellor is also a friend of ours, so that could've helped out. But the cost was prohibitive and it might've been a bit close to home for me.

    What I liked about OU was the gorgeous campus. It's tied for my favorite campus with Alabama. I also enjoyed my meeting with a ChemEng rep and what he told me. He wasn't trying to (overly) sell the department, but the opportunities that he showed me were sweet. There were some good undergrad research opportunities, just like your son had for psychology.

    The work of President Boren also impressed me. It was great to hear of someone so intelligent and involved who leads the university. I particularly liked his focus on increasing the quality of professors through the almost 10x increase of endowed professors. Although I didn't do debate team in high school (our school didn't offer one), I've been considering OU's, so maybe I'll see your son there haha.

    National Scholars office has obvious, incredible benefits.

    I also liked the school spirit. That was a big "must have" for me. I didn't actually get to try the food, but I heard it was good, so I'm taking everyone's word for it.

    I also registered for housing today and bought an OU hoodie. The hoodie is a big deal for me, because I wear a lot of jackets/hoodies and I decided not to buy a college one until I'd decided on my school, so I'm excited to get it.
  • Denise3528Denise3528 Registered User Posts: 19 New Member
    Hello Soonermom95 and Woolscarves. My son will be heading to OU this fall also. He was accepted at and visited several schools; Texas A&M, U of Alabama, Drexel, Mississippi State, Embry Riddle, Auburn, U of Tennessee (because we are from TN) and OU. These are all schools that have an Aerospace Engineering program. OU won his heart from the first few minutes there. Some of the things he really loved; the friendliness of everyone, the architecture of the campus, his recruiter in the National Merit office (Tyler), the honors college, the diversity of the student body, the professors/staff he spoke with, and the food (oh, the food! It's good that I won't have daily access to the wonderful food!). We also saw a stage production by the theater department and we were very impressed. Oh, and the Bachelors/Masters in 5 years is a big bonus.

    During the visit process he quickly ruled out Embry Riddle (too narrow a scope of study), Mississippi State (just not a good fit) and Texas A&M (felt cold and impersonal, not at all welcoming). He kept trying to keep Auburn, which he really loved, and U of Alabama, which he liked and has a great NMF package, in the running but ultimately realized that he just kept comparing them to OU and OU was what he wanted.

    He applied for housing a few months ago and has requested the National Merit floor in the towers. He knows no one else that has even considered OU, much less will be attending. In fact, we/he gets questioning looks when he tells people where he will be going.

    The fact that OU has an aerospace program is what got his attention but now he thinks he will be changing his major to computer engineering/programing. As a mom, I'm just thrilled he found a university that is a good fit, a school that he is excited about attending and one that offers so much to him both academically and financially! Also as mom, I wish it weren't 8+ hours away from home! But that's just a mom thing. :-)

    I am happy to get to read both of your comments and glad to see OU getting some activity here!
  • Soonermom95Soonermom95 Registered User Posts: 230 Junior Member
    Hi Denise! Congratulations to your son. I'm happy to hear he liked OU so much. It really is a wonderful school. I'm not a native Okie, but I've lived here for 13 years. I have to say...you won't find friendlier, more genuine people anywhere.

    I'm a short two hours away from OU, so if your son ever needs anything, feel free to PM me.

    Oh, Tyler was my son's recruiter, too. He's awesome.
  • WoolScarvesWoolScarves Registered User Posts: 209 Junior Member
    My recruiter was LeeAnn and she was super nice too.

    I'm glad your son'll be staying on the National Merit floor in the towers. Seems like I won't be alone after all!

    Something else I've been trying to think about with the 5 year Masters program, is that usually colleges will pay the student during their Masters, if it's in engineering. Not a lot, but tuition is waived and you get a stipend. In my case, I've decided to do the four years of undergrad and then two years of grad school (possibly at OU, possibly elsewhere), since the money cost won't be vastly different for an engineering student. Also, the workload won't be as large during my undergrad, which can help me keep my GPA highish, which is so important for grad school.

    I'm not exactly sure if it extends to computer programming/engineering, but I know that's typical for science and engineering kids in grad school.

    Check this out if you want to read some more: Grad School, is it worth it? | Engineer Blogs

    Of course if your son wants to do it all in five years still, I say kudos to him.
  • Denise3528Denise3528 Registered User Posts: 19 New Member
    Soonermom95, that is so kind of you to offer! Thank you. We have extended family that live in Shawnee, OK so he will have respite/help close by if/when needed.

    Have any dates for orientation or frosh camp, etc been released yet? I guess I need to check with my son on that.

    Thanks for the link woolscarves. I'll pass it on to him.

    It would be great if we could use this forum to share any info from OU about programs/events for freshmen.
  • WoolScarvesWoolScarves Registered User Posts: 209 Junior Member
    I've been looking for it and couldn't find anything. I briefly remember seeing that they might send us information in April about orientation, but that seems a bit late.

    The freshman camp info can be found here: Camp Crimson
    Anyone know whether it's worth going to or anything? I don't want to be driving 8 hours there and back more than I need to.
  • Denise3528Denise3528 Registered User Posts: 19 New Member
  • Soonermom95Soonermom95 Registered User Posts: 230 Junior Member
    My son heard from someone in the National Scholar's office earlier this week. She said that he could expect a packet giving enrollment dates, etc., in the next month or so. Enrollment is over the summer, and they will have several dates. Of course, NMS will enroll first. (Love that perk!)

    I doubt my son will do Camp Crimson. I think Orientation will be sufficient.
  • WoolScarvesWoolScarves Registered User Posts: 209 Junior Member
    I think I'll likely just do Orientation too. Will probably be trying to fit in some last minute shenanigans with my friends over the summer before we part ways. Boo hoo.

    Thanks for the checklist, Denise. I've got all that stuff jumbled around in my head somewhere, but my parents will definitely appreciate it.
  • Halistone10Halistone10 Registered User Posts: 6 New Member
    Hi everyone, It's been really helpful reading all your comments as I'm trying to decide whether to attend OU. I'm from Washington state but moved from Oklahoma a few years ago (my dad's in the military) and always thought OU might be a place to look into. I've never been to the campus but have family in the area who speak really highly of it. The main draw for me is the Medical Humanities Scholars Program, which would give me an almost automatic acceptance to OU's Medical School. I'm a finalist for the program and am flying out to OU in March to interview for one of the slots. (fingers crossed!) So I was just wondering if anyone on here had any insight into the MHSP program, OU's medical school, or even just observations about the campus, students, etc. I would really appreciate the help!

    The one major drawback for me is that even though we own a house in Oklahoma, we would still have to pay out-of-state tuition, which is slightly cost-prohibitive. Unfortunately, I don't qualify for the National Merit program either. I barely missed the Washington state cut-off, but the ironic thing is that my scores would have easily qualified me if I'd still been living in Oklahoma (cutoffs are different for each state). I guess my parents just can't help but be a little reluctant to help pay for college that would have been free if we had been able to stay at our Altus assignment for another two years. Anyway, I know that everybody on here can speak from a NM program perspective, but could anyone offer me any insight into the honors college outside the NM program. Do they still have an adequate amount of resources available?
  • Denise3528Denise3528 Registered User Posts: 19 New Member
    Welcome Halistone. I did a quick search and found a couple of items that might be beneficial. First, her is some information about residency and family of active military:

    "Further, when a member of the U.S. Armed Forces is transferred out-of-state, the member (along with his or her spouse and dependent children) is eligible to retain his or her in-state classification as long as he or she remains continuously enrolled.* “Full-Time Active Duty Military Personnel” for the purposes of this policy, are members of the armed forces who are on active duty for a period of more than 30 days (means active duty under a call or order that does not specify a period of 30 days or less). Personnel and their spouse and dependent children may be classified upon admission as in-state as long as they are continuously enrolled. “Armed Forces” means Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps and Coast Guard. Such term does not include full-time National Guard duty."

    Additionally, you could possibly qualify for a out of state tuition waiver with one of these scholarships. See right hand side of page:

    Honor Scholar Non-Resident Scholarship

    Additionally, check and see if there is an OU Alumni Association in Washington state. They may offer scholarships to encourage out of state applicants to attend OU.

    Good luck. Enjoy your visit. I think you will love it!
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