Any thoughts on Vassar/getting in to Vassar?

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Discus: What Are My Chances?: September 2003 Archive: Any thoughts on Vassar/getting in to Vassar?
By Anya (Anya) on Monday, September 15, 2003 - 08:56 pm: Edit

I finally looked at Vassar per my counselor's suggestion, just before filling out my ED app to Middlebury, and I think I'm in love.

I'm a little worried about over-liberalism for an unusual reason- my school is dominated by fanatic liberals, I very nearly am one myself, but I have to say I get tired of people who question everything except questioning everything, which I find very liberal people tend to do more than others. I'm not going to let this get me down, though. I think Vassar is my dream school.

I feel like I have a fair shot at getting in but am not sure- any advice or thoughts would be really great and appreciated!

I have a 1300 right now SAT I, hope to raise that in October maybe to 1400 if at all possible. I am a National Merit Semi-Finalist (anyone know anything about how much SAT I scores factor into NM final selection and if a 1300 should disqualify me??); SAT IIs: Writing 800, Math IIC 630; French 680.

I'm a full IB diploma candidate, have two 4s right now. I'm in 9 classes this year, half AP and half IB. Have been in full IB program for 4 years (official IB classes 2 yrs only). I should definitely be top 10%, my school doesn't do rankings, last I knew, I was 27 in 400 but that was two years ago. 3.9 gpa unweighted. 4 yrs of everything but science (3).

I have good- not stellar, but good I think- extra curriculars- a few activities I've been doing forever, a lot that show my interests/passions. Lots of volunteering, leadership, etc. I think I'll have a pretty good reccomendation from my teacher (Vassar only asks for one); and writing is my life so I'm hoping to be able to get out a passable essay, but who knows.

Okay. If anyone has anything to say I'd love to hear it...

By Sadeyedlady (Sadeyedlady) on Monday, September 15, 2003 - 09:11 pm: Edit

Just wondering - what is it about Vassar that you love. I've spent a lot of time there because my sister went there, and I'm now applying to it. I've been overnight, to her classes, to parties, to the Mug, everywhere..but I still am not too thrilled about it for some reason. Which is weird because the other schools I'm applying to are very much like it - Swarthmore, Wesleyan, etc.

By Chasgoose (Chasgoose) on Monday, September 15, 2003 - 09:15 pm: Edit

Vassar is a great choice. My mom went there and loved it and now she tries to get everyone she knows, including me, to apply there. Your stats are similar to those who applied and got in from my school last year. Although I am assuming from your username that you are a girl, one thing that might help you is if you are a boy because Vassar has a little problem with its boy/girl ratio (it's 40/60). Good luck!

By Anya (Anya) on Monday, September 15, 2003 - 09:18 pm: Edit

the things that really appeal to me:
-it's in New York (stupid reasoning, yes, but I want to be a writer, and there's so much opportunity in New York for writers- publishing houses, magazines, etc)
-it's in New York but still has a rural-esque (this is the impression I've got, anyway, haven't seen it) campus, or at least a BIG campus, esp. compared to lots of other schools in NY and just other schools in general.
-lots of internship opportunities
-good academics, good reputation, a diploma means something
-the makeup of the students is different from a lot of other LACs I've been looking at; there's more public school kids, more diversity, more from other places than East Coast prep schools, more with diversity of opinions
-I've heard- *heard*- that drinking isn't as prevalent as it is on a lot of other campuses, and I just don't want to be somewhere where drinking is the only thing to do or the central thing to do or the coolest thing to do.

any particular reason you know that you don't like Vassar too much? if you can tell me anything about what it's like in real life that'd be cool, I don't think I'll be able to visit. were you impressed at all by the classes you've been to? do you maybe just not want to go there because your sister does? I don't think I would go somewhere my brother went...

By Anya (Anya) on Monday, September 15, 2003 - 09:19 pm: Edit

thanks! yeah I'm a girl. darn. but they do have a much better ration than Sarah Lawrence, 75-25 I think... which has to be a good thing.

By Chasgoose (Chasgoose) on Monday, September 15, 2003 - 09:34 pm: Edit

Also have you been to the Vassar campus because in my opinion it is the most beautiful college campus.

By Sadeyedlady (Sadeyedlady) on Monday, September 15, 2003 - 09:37 pm: Edit

I didn't like one of the classes I sat in on...a history class. it was basically just the guy droning on for an hour. but my sister said that the class usually has a lot of discussion but since it was the beginning of the unit he was going over the material.

drinking isn't forced upon you but everyone i met there drank quite a bit on friday and saturday nights. pot was very prevalent and coke was for *some* groups of people. drugs are generally accepted as part of the social scene although there's absolutely no pressure to do them. the administration is very lax towards alcohol.

poughkeepsie is an awful gross blue collar town. there are a few restaurants near vassar but apart from that, its definitely not a college town. my sister says there are some things to do in the parts i haven't seen.

vassar isn't as diverse as the statistics claim. about 70% of the people i saw were very rich white liberal sophisticated females. the males are supposedly 40% but i didnt notice/see many males. when i told my sister i wanted to go to an all womens college she said vassar is basically a womans college with gay men. its funny because its true...all her male friends are gay. but i do know that there are straight men..i only met one, though.

now for the good things!!

excellent program in english since you want to be a writer. the classes are small and the professors very willing to help students.

the campus is beautiful but the dorm rooms are so-so. the coed bathrooms are gross.

the people are friendly and very accepting for anything.

there are lots of outlets for creativity, especially fine arts.

student organizations are very popular and its easy to get involved.

ill be happy to answer any other questions, through my sister.

By Rubenizm (Rubenizm) on Monday, September 15, 2003 - 10:42 pm: Edit

lesbians!!!!! vassar - here i come!

By Anya (Anya) on Tuesday, September 16, 2003 - 08:27 pm: Edit

last comment not appreciated... the rest of it, thanks guys. co-ed bathrooms sound kinda creepy. do a lot of colleges have them? so Sad, is the reason you're not very interested in Vassar because you think the cons outweigh the pros? I don't really know... it helps to have that info, thanks again, good to hear from someone who is closer to the real thing instead of books and stuff for once. I don't know what I think now!

By Sadeyedlady (Sadeyedlady) on Sunday, September 21, 2003 - 02:24 pm: Edit

Don't get me wrong..I still think it's a great school. But what's right for my sister may not be right for me.

The thing is, I've spent soooo much time at Vassar..I even spent my spring break there, so sometimes I feel that if I want college to be a new and exciting experience, vassar won't be as exciting because it's so familiar to me.

also, it doesn't have a great economics department.

By Vassar (Vassar) on Monday, September 22, 2003 - 02:38 pm: Edit


A year ago I was in a very similar position. I was stongly concerned with the potentiality of ignorant hyper-liberalism at Vassar. However, I sent in my ED application nonetheless as I was absolutely amazed by the campus' beauty, the general atmosphere, as well as the flexibility of the curriculum.

Since that point, I have been accepted, and absolutely love it! Vassar is liberal. However, the term "liberal" should not be construed to constitute a pejorative description. Vassar is enormously tolerant of all socio-political positions.

The classes are small and extremely engaging. The professors are leaders in their fields and are amazingly intelligent.

Poughkeepsie leaves quite a bit to be desired. However, the Dutchess County/Mid-Hudson Valley region offers a spectacular array of activities; politically, socially, and artistically. Being equidistant from both NYC and Albany is a tremendous asset as it permits students access to a range of atmospheres, from pastoral to metropolitan. Additionally, Vassar hosts a plethora of very interesting on-campus activities.

I was also looking at Yale, Cornell, and NYU. While these schools have certain advantages (research facilities, greater name recognition, etc) none of them match Vassar's ability to instill in students a potent passion for learning. All classes here are taught by professors (no TAs) and you would be hard pressed to find an unhappy student. People from extrodinarily diverse backrounds converge here and are, almost without exception, extremely pleased with their decision.

Unfortunately I must end this now, I am going to an art gallery show, then to a lecture on dark matter, and ending my evening with a guest lecture on the US in the Mid-East before heading down to the Husdon River area for dinner at a great Italian restaurant. Vassar, like many other colleges, is wholly what you make of it.

By Vassar (Vassar) on Monday, September 22, 2003 - 02:42 pm: Edit

Also- about the co-ed bathrooms...They are fine. It seems odd at first but you become used to it very fast. In fact, you barely notice it after the first week. "Sad.." is justifiably concerned. Some things here at Vassar are seemingly unconfortable. However, once you arrive you find this is not the case.

By Anya (Anya) on Monday, September 22, 2003 - 06:38 pm: Edit

thanks, I really appreciate your opinions/info. I don't know where I stand with Vassar right now... I'm still somewhat in love with it. The problem is I can say that about a few other places, too... although I think right now Vassar is standing a bit above the rest.

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