I've been accepted to both (Wash U art/sci and GWU Elliott) with financial aid from each where the cost is the same.
I absolutely love D.C., and although I may not enter into politics (I also have an interest in mechanical engineering), GWU has a descent engineering department and they're building a new facility. But then again, WashU doesn't have a school of international affairs.
I've also been accepted to the honors program at GWU which is supposed to provide an alternative to going to an "elite school" such as WashU.
I can't decide which to attend. It seems like the honors program's talking points are geared towards me--that is, motivated student who wants to live in the political epicenter of the country, and still be challenged.
I've heard a lot of criticism about the university though. Some students hate it, and think that there are some huge problems. I obviously don't want to deal with that, but after going to the welcome day, and watching the honors presentation, it seems like they're really focussed on giving you a good education.
I seem more excited to live in D.C. What a great city! Seeing the monumental architecture excites me, and I feel like I'd take advantage of the city. Although perhaps it being in my favorite city is its biggest--perhaps only--draw. I'm also a little afraid of the rigor of WashU. I've gone to a pretty difficult high school, although I feel that sometimes my intelligence is muted by my proximity to true intellectuals (i.e. I don't want to have anxiety). At GWU, I would be in the top 100 of the class. On the contrary, being next to smart people has pushed me to where I am today and without their presence it's possible that I wouldn't have achieved as much as I have.
And what about reputation? Will a GWU degree come close to WUSTL?
Thanks for reading, and if you have a casual comment to drop, I'd appreciate it.