I also need some help sorting through a (somewhat) long list

Click here to go to the NEW College Discussion Forum

Discus: College Search and Selection: August 2004 Archive: I also need some help sorting through a (somewhat) long list
By Speeddemon608 (Speeddemon608) on Thursday, August 19, 2004 - 11:46 pm: Edit

ok, so i originally had about 25 on this list but after visiting a few its down to 19

from the general perusal of the baord i think i need some safeties, but here are my stats:

thats also got a fair bit about me, but i have no career or major in mind but i do like math/science if that helps

so im looking for something new england, cold, beautiful place to live and run (i'm a big time runner with cross-country/indoor/outdoor track), and a smaller place, and im able to flex in any of those areas

ok so heres the list

Bates College
Boston College
Bowdoin College
Colby College
Colgate U.
Cornell U.
Dartmouth College
Hamilton College
Harvard College
Haverford College
Middlebury College
Princeton U.
Swarthmore C.
Trinity College CT
U. of Rochester
Wesleyan U.
Williams College
Yale University

so...any help? and id be glad to answer any furhter questiosn that would help...i really need to start narrowing this

By Mini (Mini) on Friday, August 20, 2004 - 12:10 am: Edit

These are all fine colleges - you can get a great education at any one of them. Some are urban and some are rural. At some, athletics are big and at some they're not. Some have a lot of students (relatively) and some not too many. One is heavily religiously affiliated.

They are all drawing on the same pool of students, they're all in the northeast, and, I think, they all have track teams.

Yale's campus is nice, but New Haven is hardly a garden spot. Same for Trinity, with Hartford. With Williams, Hamilton, Middlebury, Colby, there's not a lot of there, there.

Which one has the best coach?

By Speeddemon608 (Speeddemon608) on Friday, August 20, 2004 - 12:18 am: Edit

i've only contacted the cross country coach at williams. since im good friends with a graduate from my school who will be going into his sophomore year of class and of xc and track, and he too was very good with running, so he said just email the coach, which i did

so hes the only coach i know of, and i know williams is top in D3 everything up to the national level where they still do pretty well(all of this in xc i think), so thats definitely appealing to me

its pretty late where im at (outside of philly) so hopefully more knowledge of coachs, running programs, or anything else tomorrow

By Reidmc (Reidmc) on Friday, August 20, 2004 - 12:54 am: Edit

Given your stats and the high-quality schools on your list, I think you are the only person that can really cut this list effectively. Visits will certainly help, but unless you've already been to a bunch of these schools I can't see how you could possibly visit them all in the next few months.

Here are some questions that may help you:

1. Do you want an engineering option?
2. Do you prefer urban, suburban or rural?
3. Cornell is 10x the size of Haverford. . .which end of that spectrum do you prefer?
4. Are you interested in frats and sororities?
5. Are you going to focus solely on academics, or do you want to balance social, recreational and academic activity?
6. Do you have (a) the qualifiying times and (b)the interest in making the major time commitment necessary for Division I competition?

Finally, if you can really generate enthusiasm for 9-10 schools, including a great safety, it doesn't matter what other schools come off this list. You can only go to one, and you'll get a good one as long as you keep selectivity in mind when you edit this list.

By Slipper2002 (Slipper2002) on Friday, August 20, 2004 - 01:28 am: Edit

Ummm...Dartmouth, Williams, Amherst. Dartmouth ED if I were you.

By Speeddemon608 (Speeddemon608) on Friday, August 20, 2004 - 01:37 pm: Edit

1. at one point i was very interested in engineering, but now im back to being unsure again, but it does seem like an area that would interest me

2. definitely dont like hte urban settings, could work with suburban and prefer the rural setting

3. like i said id prefer a smaller class size, im not sure if your talking campus size, which i wouldnt mind being pretty big

4. i dont like the frat/sorority scene, so i want a school with minimal participation in that, even better none at all

5. id love for a balance of athletics academics and social scene, i love to compete in running, love to have fun and (shhh dont tell anyone) sometimes love to learn

6. id prefer to run D3 over D1, and my junior running times have me well in reach of making a lot of the D1 quliafing times in cross country and track, and i would be able to run D1 but my interest lies more towards D3

and whats a good amount to narrow down too, is 9-10 ok? what sort of safeties should i look at?

By Mini (Mini) on Friday, August 20, 2004 - 02:19 pm: Edit

So --

Eliminate as urban: Yale, Trinity, MIT, and Harvard.

Eliminate with fraternities: Colgate, Hamilton, Rochester, Cornell (one of the largest frat scenes in the country), Dartmouth

While they have nice campuses, eliminate as suburban: Swarthmore, Haverford (you live next door!), Princeton.

Leaving a WONDERFUL list of D3 schools, all in New England:
Wesleyan (it is a smallish town)

Add back in for engineering options: Swarthmore and Princeton. (Swarthmore and big-time athletics anything is an oxymoron.) Neither is New England.

There you are - 8 schools, and I'll bet you get into all of them (except maybe Princeton, though the track coach may have something to say about that.)

By Palomino (Palomino) on Friday, August 20, 2004 - 02:36 pm: Edit

I'd look closely at Williams, Middlebury, and Colby. All 3 have the most stunning campuses, and are strong academically.

By Speeddemon608 (Speeddemon608) on Friday, August 20, 2004 - 09:45 pm: Edit

anyone have comments on mini's suggestions?
sounds like solid advice to me...

By Mini (Mini) on Friday, August 20, 2004 - 09:48 pm: Edit

Well, it really was YOUR advice - I just sorted the schools based upon it.

By Speeddemon608 (Speeddemon608) on Friday, August 20, 2004 - 09:56 pm: Edit

oh and mini you didnt mention boston college, what do you think of that?

By Mini (Mini) on Saturday, August 21, 2004 - 12:07 am: Edit

Whoops, sorry! Boston College is urban/suburban, and hence would have been eliminated.

Mind you - these are all good schools, all will have their supporters and detractors, all will provide a good education. I was just applying YOUR criteria (which may be different from someone else's).

By Speeddemon608 (Speeddemon608) on Saturday, August 21, 2004 - 12:26 am: Edit

i guess im just a little hesitant to take big names like MIT, harvard, etc. off of my list. though i really dont like cities, it just feels odd that i dont know what im giving up

anyone else run into this problem?

By Par72 (Par72) on Saturday, August 21, 2004 - 12:39 am: Edit

Might want to look at Holy Cross -great track history and nice location.

By Mini (Mini) on Saturday, August 21, 2004 - 12:39 am: Edit

You can always go there for graduate school, which is what they are best known for anyway.

Or stick 'em back on if you like. But don't get sucked into the prestige game. This should be among the best four years of your life. If you are happy, and in a place that suits you, you will do better, and you'll end up ahead in the game. And you'll get a great education at any of these places, often even superior to what you'll find at the big H. Go to the Princeton Review site and read the student comments and you'll get a pretty good feel.

(Once you started visiting the 6 schools that meet your criteria, you are going to fall in love - and that's all that matters.)

By Reidmc (Reidmc) on Saturday, August 21, 2004 - 03:00 pm: Edit

Mini's sort looks good, though you are short safeties. And a Maine visit will likely eliminate at least one school - probably Colby.

So you still need a solid safety - a small rural or small city school with an engineering option. . . maybe Union College? I'd also think about visiting Carleton and Grinnell.

No problem adding back a "big name" school, but find one that interests you for reasons other than prestige, as your criteria disqualify most of them. Of those on your list - Dartmouth or Princeton seem reasonable to me.

By Speeddemon608 (Speeddemon608) on Saturday, August 21, 2004 - 05:21 pm: Edit

are frats and sororites a huge part of dartmouth? i seesm to match me everywhere except there

By Jcf007 (Jcf007) on Saturday, August 21, 2004 - 05:38 pm: Edit

Your list is really similiar to what mine was:
All the ivies (except for Penn) and (Yale EA), Duke, Williams, Trinity, Bowdoin, Wesleyan, Amherst, Washington and Lee, Colgate, Haverford, and Middlebury.....I ended up getting into 13 of the 17 (all but Amherst, Brown, Yale and Harvard), and I start at Princeton on the 4th...my advice is to not limit yourself, I really wanted Yale and I almost didn't apply to Princeton because I assumed (foolishly) that if I could get into Princeton I would get into Yale (obviously not the case), after looking at my list I could have eliminated schools like Colgate, Washington and Lee and Haverford because I knew I would get into Middlebury, Bowdoin, and Wesleyan (after my subsequent interviews there) and i knew I would prefer those anyway. So if you look at your list after considering that, you could probably do away with Rochester, maybe one or two of the Maine LACs, or Trinity...again it's all your personal preference, but given your stats you'll soon learn as I did that you only really need 1 or 2 really good safeties.

By Mini (Mini) on Saturday, August 21, 2004 - 05:53 pm: Edit

"are frats and sororites a huge part of dartmouth? i seesm to match me everywhere except there"

Apparently a big frat/sorority and party scene, subject of much gnashing of teeth among the administration over the past 5 years. Slowly, but surely, they are being strangled.

Fine school, though, as are all the schools on your list. I''m sure there are folks who love and some who don't.

By Hammertime (Hammertime) on Sunday, August 22, 2004 - 12:22 am: Edit

Definitely apply to Wesleyan. It seems to fit all of your preferences. I'm going to walk on to the XC team there this year, and the guys on the team seem really cool. The coach is really good, and was an accomplished runner in HS and college. The team is good, (generally finishing in the middle of the pack at NESCACs) but generally doesn't qualify for NCAAs on the guys side, which may be a negative. However, this could be a good thing, since you could contribute as a frosh, and there are still a lot of very good runners on the team. Also, the school just bought a big plot of land adjacent to campus, and according to the coach, they are going to make a new home course, and some good trails there in the upcoming years. The team also seems to value having a good time more than the others I checked out, and seems to have a more laid back atmosphere when not training and racing. Check out the team's website at wesxc.com to get a sense of the team...it has profiles and stuff. OK, later.

Report an offensive message on this page    E-mail this page to a friend
Posting is currently disabled in this topic. Contact your discussion moderator for more information.

Administrator's Control Panel -- Board Moderators Only
Administer Page