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Vanderbilt or Emory??

SoulsticeSoulstice Registered User Posts: 75 Junior Member
edited October 2010 in Vanderbilt University
I've received admission to both schools. I live in the Northeast and I haven't been able to schedule visits to either school yet, though I have researched both extensively and read up a lot on both schools. They seem similar in a lot of aspects--the Southern culture, the academic level, the [not that it matters, but for superficial purposes] perceived prestige, etc. I don't know which one to pick, as of now. Planning to visit both but narrowing it down would be helpful.

ABOUT ME:
LOCATION: Northeast, both schools are far.
PROFILE: Asian--fitting in is a concern at Vanderbilt more so than it is at Emory, especially if there's any sort of self-segregation of the student body. Is the low percentage of Asian students something to be concerned about?
ACADEMIC INTERESTS: Looking to major in Economics and potentially complete a minor in either Political Science or International Studies, something along those lines. Also want to be a pre-med student with an eventual aim of applying to medical school. How do these particular programs and departments compare?
EXTRACURRICULAR INTERESTS: Interested in writing for a political journal or something of the sort (personally, I'm a liberal). Additionally seeking to get involved in political activism or student volunteerism in general.
ADDITIONAL 'WANTS' IN A SCHOOL (BESIDES STATED ABOVE):
1. A "work hard, play hard" mentality, as in a school that is laid-back and not as cutthroat but still has an academically motivated student body.
2. Opportunties for civic engagement, volunteerism, and medical-related extracurriculars.
3. Easy access to internships and research opportunities. As I have yet to visit Nashville or Atlanta, some comparison of the cities and the opportunities available there would be helpful.
4. A lot of school spirit.
5. A decent social scene, but NOT one where social life is entirely determined by one's involvement with the Greek system.
6. Good student advising and career services and the like.
7. ***Eventually, anything that will give me a good place to learn and expand my horizons academically as much as possible, and to position myself well to get into medical school by the end of the process. This is obviously job 1, in the end. So a school that is recognized for a strong curriculum, has a good recognition among med school admit boards and employers, and a school that has a curriculum that can allow me to prepare well for the MCAT.

Any help, or input on this decision? I understand that a message board is a foolish way to pick a college, but I am very split on this right now and some comments from others would be great.
Post edited by Soulstice on
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Replies to: Vanderbilt or Emory??

  • 2VU06092VU0609 Registered User Posts: 3,483 Senior Member
    There have been lots of threads about this choice in the past. Look in the archives for the Vanderbilt forum and you'll find several. Those may be helpful, along with the comments you are bound to get here.
  • 2VU06092VU0609 Registered User Posts: 3,483 Senior Member
  • SoulsticeSoulstice Registered User Posts: 75 Junior Member
    The reason I felt the need to repost though, and I did look through the other threads, was because I felt that my academic interests didn't align with the other people who posted this same question--and that makes a difference. (or it should, right?)
  • alam1alam1 Registered User Posts: 1,065 Senior Member
    lol, I would say Emory.
  • southerncharmsoutherncharm Registered User Posts: 156 Junior Member
    Neither of these schools fit your wants 100% but I think Vandy would be better.
    I have no idea how the Econ and Pre-med departments compare, but I don't think you could go wrong with either school academically. There are plenty of opportunities to volunteer here at vandy and there are also a lot of opportunities for research (even as a freshman). The "work hard, play hard" mentality definitely sums up Vandy more than Emory, and we have a LOT more school spirit.

    The social life here is what you make of it. I'd be lying if I said that greeks didn't dominate the social scene, but there are other things to do if you're not interested in that.

    As for the asian thing, there's going to be some self-segregation no matter where you go. If you're used to being around a lot of asians, then coming to vandy might be a little bit of a shock. I don't think you'd have a problem fitting in though
  • zmoose27zmoose27 Registered User Posts: 252 Junior Member
    From what you describe, go to Vanderbilt. I think you'll love it, Work Hard Play Hard pretty much sums up the Vanderbilt student body.

    And there are Asians on campus and they tend to be very supportive of each other in various way from what I've seen/heard.
  • vandyalumvandyalum Registered User Posts: 46 Junior Member
    If there's any way possible, you should visit the 2 campuses and speak with as many students as possible. When we visited from CT, my son liked both schools, but felt an affinity for Vanderbilt. One of his best friends chose Emory. It's a personal decision that only you can make.

    Good luck!
  • midmomidmo Registered User Posts: 3,720 Senior Member
    It seems to me that you may not be 100% sure about what direction you would like to go, academically. Economics major with a poli sci minor but pre-med curriculum sounds like you have a lot of different interests. If that is the case, you might want to choose schools based on factors other than particular strength in one or two fields.
    Opportunties for civic engagement, volunteerism, and medical-related extracurriculars.

    Vanderbilt likes students who volunteer in programs that strengthen the connection between Vandy and Nashville. There seem to be a lot of opportunities along that line. The premed students I know have had no trouble combining pre-med interests with volunteerism. I can't compare Emory with Vandy, as I don't know too much about Emory.

    Enjoy your visits. I think they will help you make a decision.
  • lissy0505lissy0505 Registered User Posts: 30 New Member
    Ahh it's a tough choice. Both great schools though!! Haha I'm actually a) from the northeast b)admitted to Emory/Vandy too!
    I think Vandy is more my choice since I like Frat Parties/School Spirit/Sports. Both great cities from what I hear - I haven't been to Nashville yet. Also although Vandy is cliquey, it's supposed to have a lot of really sweet people too.
    Emory is less spirited from what I've read, whilst Vandy is very Frat/Sorority/Cliquey/People-Dress-Up.
    In terms of academics, both are awesome- I don't think you can go too wrong there.

    I love this site for student reviews of colleges...maybe check it out?
    You can filter reviews and get those just by people with your major/home area.
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  • lissy0505lissy0505 Registered User Posts: 30 New Member
    weird I don't know why it didn't let me post the link. its
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  • lissy0505lissy0505 Registered User Posts: 30 New Member
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  • frozenX207frozenX207 Registered User Posts: 25 New Member
    vandy! but iheard it' very preppy! alos only 40% are into Greek societies.
    and Nashville in my opinion is much better than atlanta
  • mirimommirimom Registered User Posts: 110 Junior Member
    I have two kids who chose Vandy over Emory. Although on paper the schools seem almost identical, they are extremely different. You really have to visit to understand this. The campuses couldn't be more different physically, both in terms of style and size. The overall culture of the two schools is also very different. I think part of that is because of Vandy's SEC sports and the fact that kids live on campus all four years. As everyone says, academics and job opportunities are probably similar. But I don't think it is too much of an exaggeration to say that they are night and day in terms of student "experience."
  • SoulsticeSoulstice Registered User Posts: 75 Junior Member
    It appears that a lot of the comments relate mainly to the social scene. I'm not really one for big parties and I'm definitely not very big on Greek life. In that sense, I'm having doubts about whether I can fit in well at Vanderbilt and whether it's a school for me. For those of you who also applied to, visited, or considered Emory, would you consider the school comparatively lacking in activity, or just characterized by a different type of active social life that is not centered on the frat scene?
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