|By Dumbuket (Dumbuket) on Sunday, October 05, 2003 - 10:22 am: Edit|
Hello. I'm a student at Brandeis, and the school is not working for me. I plan to take a leave of absence after the first semester, during which I plan to work, train on my cycle, and take multivariate and linear algebra courses by distance learning, along maybe with some comp-sci. I also plan to tutor privately and for Kaplan and get around to doing some writing. I want to earn money to travel by bike around the US and Europe.
I'm leaving the school because it is far too soon for me to be reimmersed in formal academia. I could handle the work if it was necessary, but Brandeis seems to resemble my old High School too much: grim, competitive, and joyless. I'm sure that there are other people with different opinions of the place, and I know that at any school, I'll have to make adjustments. Now, though, isn't the right time for me, is all.
I did drop down to three courses this semester, mostly because they restrict entrance to advanced Bio courses and I didn't feel like doing old stuff for requirements. I'm currently in political philosophy, global economics, and journalism. I can answer more specific questions about my academic background if necessary.
I want to know if only having one semester instead of "one continuous academic year" will be much of a problem when, after I get my traveling and working done, I apply for transfer. I want to try for schools with more resources than Brandeis... I also want a place with a complex systems research center, like Brandeis has. I'm very interested in game theory economics and sociobiology, which make Harvard and Stanford very intriguing. I also have a newfound appreciation for Brown's lack of a core, though I admire Columbia's core, and I also like how close it is to home. I'm lucky enough to have a good friend at each of those schools, and they seem much more suited to me.
I want to know if only having one semester instead of "one continuous academic year" under my belt will be much of a problem. I understand that the listed schools are competitive, and I also plan to explore a few more for transfer. I really don't want to return to Brandeis, though... I went because of the money they offered, and now I realize how much of a mistake it was. I don't want to "adjust" to the school, because I'm afraid that "adjustment" will mean that I'll just become a depressed and apathetic pot-smoker or a hyper-competitive pre-law, pre-wall street, or pre-med. Even if I don't, I think my resources are better spent "learning" than "adjusting"... I just don't like the place.
So would leaving the wrong school early penalize me? or should I just tough it out for a second semester?
|By Dumbuket (Dumbuket) on Monday, October 06, 2003 - 07:04 pm: Edit|
|By Jamimom (Jamimom) on Monday, October 06, 2003 - 07:24 pm: Edit|
You sound like an interesting young person and I don't believe a semester off will hurt your ap at all. Just make sure your grades are good at Brandeis that semester so it does not look like you are leaving because you cannot handle the work. When transfering, colleges look most carefully at the grades received at the first college and the reason for wanting to transfer. Your reasons are good and the semester off looks interesting and rewarding. Don't wreck the ship with bad grades.
Also look carefully at transfer policies. I heard Cornell does not accept transfers until after the end of a full year--check on that. And many schools do not offer financial aid or scholarshops to transfers. If you need aid, that can be an issue.
Good luck to you. The semester off sounds wonderful.
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