How should i make a college list even if i don't know what i

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Discus: College Search and Selection: August 2004 Archive: How should i make a college list even if i don't know what i
By Krbxtigerz (Krbxtigerz) on Thursday, August 05, 2004 - 02:00 pm: Edit

I don't really know what i'm going to major in at college....... i'm going to be a senior in the fall...... i have to apply soon...
currently i only know a lot about williams....... b/c my sister is going there this's say i want to major in like engineering, premed, or business.......what are the top schools for those majors??

By Arthurd (Arthurd) on Thursday, August 05, 2004 - 02:02 pm: Edit

Post your stats... that will give CCers a place to start helping you.

By Krbxtigerz (Krbxtigerz) on Thursday, August 05, 2004 - 02:06 pm: Edit

1350 SAT1 (retaking, verbal is very low 570....english as second language)
95.3 GPA UW....all honors & APs...
790 math 2c, chem 740, writing 630 (retaking to break 700)
good ECs....

By Arthurd (Arthurd) on Thursday, August 05, 2004 - 02:24 pm: Edit

Some schools that should fit you and have good programs in the areas you listed are:

RPI (safety)
Boston University (match)
Carnegie Mellon (match)
Cornell (reach)
Brown (match-reach)

These are all I can think of at the moment.

I say Brown is a match-reach because English is your second language and you may qualify for URM status, which usually helps a bit at Brown.

By Krbxtigerz (Krbxtigerz) on Thursday, August 05, 2004 - 02:42 pm: Edit

what about Williams, Upenn, columbia??
i don't think BU is a match for me lol....more like safety

By Arthurd (Arthurd) on Thursday, August 05, 2004 - 02:49 pm: Edit

I can't speak for Williams, but UPenn would be a good reach to have if you are strongly considering business, and Columbia is also a reach.

And you are right: BU is definitely on the safer side of the scale depending on which college you are looking at.

By Slipper2002 (Slipper2002) on Thursday, August 05, 2004 - 02:55 pm: Edit

If you get into one of these schools pre-med is irrelevant. Going to a "good" pre-med school can even be a disadvantage since competition gets really cut-throat (JHU for example). As for business, only Wharton and Cornell offer programs in the Ivy, but Michigan, Cal, and MIT offer top programs. Business is also not so clear however, as I-banks and consulting firms recruit heavily out of all the ivys. Major in Econ at any of them and you will be set for business. Engineering is the only place where a "top" program is important, but if you go to grad school for engineering its a moot point as well. There are plenty on Brown, Harvard, Yale, and Dartmouth engineers at top engines grad schools. The best non-tech engineering schools are Penn, Columbia, Princeton, Stanford, Duke, and Cornell, but at most of these you have to apply directly into the engineering school, which may or may not not be the best thing for you since you are undecided. It is very hard to leave Columbia SEAS for the College for example, while at Princeton or Dartmouth it is a non-issue...

Liking Williams and Columbia is a slight contradiction to me. But if I were you I would apply to or at least consider:


By Dadofsam (Dadofsam) on Thursday, August 05, 2004 - 04:41 pm: Edit

krbxtigerz: If you're seriously thinking about medical school, you might want to think twice about engineering school. Not that the two aren't compatible, but as you will see in postings by Ariesathena (an engineering graduate now entering law school) engineering grades don't tend to run very high, but medical schools tend to look for students with very good grades (check the medical school board on CC for more information about that).

My advice on engineering schools is that no-one should apply to one unless you feel that you actually want to become an engineer. The programs are very concentrated in math and engineering sujects.

If you want engineering-business combinations, look at Penn, RPI, Carnegie-Mellon and Lehigh.

If you want a business major/pre-med program, then consider why business. Many schools offer a business degree, but that quality of that degree can vary quite a bit.

Brown is a very popular school and a reach for most everybody. Penn, likewise. You can apply anyway, but consider them reaches, that is, don't count on them.

Note that we are all assuming you want to go to school in the Northeaast. If that's not true, say so, so that we can look at schools in other areas.

By Krbxtigerz (Krbxtigerz) on Thursday, August 05, 2004 - 10:58 pm: Edit

Dadofsam and other thanks for advices.....i don't think i will be an yes i want to go to school in the east side of the U.S.......if i decide to be a premed major....are Williams and Upenn and duke very good for premed?????? are they all reach for me??? I think i can get into penn and Williams....thanks

By Hammertime (Hammertime) on Friday, August 06, 2004 - 01:50 am: Edit

Why do so many people on these boards who speak English as a second language say "advices" instead of advice? I'm not singling krbxtigerz out at all.....I've just noticed the trend of pluralizing "advice." This isn't meant to be offensive towards people learning the language or anything...I know English is a ridiculous langauge. I'm just curious why this seems to be the only mistake I see consistently on these boards.

By 3togo (3togo) on Friday, August 06, 2004 - 09:09 am: Edit

I did not know what I wanted to major in when I started my college search ... however, there were a bunch of things I knew I did NOT want to major in. Eventually I got my possible majors down to 3 or 4 possibilities and then found schools that offered all these majors. In my case that cut my list of possible schools down quite a bit and also pointed me a bigger schools (they were the only ones that had all my possible majors).

While you said you do not know what major you want to pursue I'm sure you can create a relatively short list of the leading contendors. Using these possibilies you should be able to develop the starting point of your search.

FYI - I think it is great that you are not sure yet ... college is a great time to try new things and to discover ... I ended up majoring in a field I had never heard of when I started college.

Good luck!

By Benzinspeicher (Benzinspeicher) on Sunday, August 08, 2004 - 02:28 am: Edit

there's no way RPI would be a safety w/ BU being a match-RPI is first tier, BU is second tier

RPI's avg SAT score is higher too

so if BU is a match, so isn't RPI (if not a reach, but it won't be w/ those stats)

By Alexandre (Alexandre) on Sunday, August 08, 2004 - 04:36 am: Edit

For Engineering, Premed and Business, I would look at the following schools, assuming you have excellent grades:

Cal-Berkeley: Cal is top 3 in Engineering. Given its incredible science departments, it is excellent at sending students to Medical School. It is also affiliated to UCSF, one of the top 10 Medical Schools in the country. Cal also has a top 5 Business school at the undergraduate level.

Carnegie Mellon: Top 10 in Engineering and top 10 Business school.

MIT: Obviously, they are #1 in Engineering. Thanks to its excellence in the sciences, MIT is excellent at sending students to medical school. MIT also has a top 3 undergraduate Business School.

Michigan-Ann Arbor: Top 6 or 7 in Engineering. Michigan sends more students (1,100/year or 20% of its graduating class) to Medical school than any university in the nation and has a top 6 or 7 Medical school of its own. Michigan also has a top 3 Business School at the undergraduate level.

Penn: Wharton is the #1 Business school in the World. Penn is also an excellent medical school feeder, has top 5 medical school of its own. Although not as strong in Engineering, it is still top 25 in Engineering.

Those are the top 5 in the 3 majors you are considering. But if you can narrow your choices a little further, I think we can whip a better list for you. Are you sure you may be interested in Business. That really limits you since most excellenct universities and LACs do not have undergraduate Business programs.

By Carolyn (Carolyn) on Sunday, August 08, 2004 - 10:01 pm: Edit

Instead of worrying about majors, start by giving some thought to the type of school that would fit you best - would you prefer a large, small, or medium sized school? One in a city, near a city, or in a rural area like Williams? Would you prefer large lectures, small discussion classes, or a mix of both? Do you have geographic preference? How would you describe yourself to someone who doesn't know you - are you artsy, conservative, liberal, preppy, etc. What type of social scene would you like? etc. etc. Would you prefer a school where there's a pretty set core curriculum or one where you can take classes in any subject that interests you to help you decide on your major?

Once you have the answers to these questions, come back and ask for suggestions here --- then you can start to whittle down to schools that have majors you might be interested in pursuing. Don't worry - the majority of people change their college majors anyhow and many schools understand this and don't mind people who are undecided.

One other piece of advice: since you are undecided, be sure to ask about the advising process at every school you visit --- you'll want a strong advisor to help you decide on your options and you may also do best at a school where an advisor is assigned to you right from the start of freshman year. At many larger universities, this is not the case.

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