Picking College and College Scholarships

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MARFEE
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by MARFEE » Thu Mar 15, 2018 6:02 pm

Timmy, best of luck to your son. I'm rooting for Cornell. That's where I went so long ago.

timmy
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by timmy » Fri Mar 16, 2018 9:18 am

Yes. Some engineers are tall. Others are short. The rest are in between.
Last edited by timmy on Wed Mar 21, 2018 9:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.

timmy
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by timmy » Fri Mar 16, 2018 9:33 am

mainebeach wrote:
Thu Mar 15, 2018 12:38 pm
I think this has been a very competitive year with respect to college acceptances. A friends son w crazy high test scores and grades has been deferred so far to the very desireable schools he has applied to but still waiting on some Ivies among others.He was even wait-listed at his parents alma-mater. Our daughter just got in McGill but declined by Wellesley where we thought she was a competitive applicant coming from a stem based magnet school. Will save us money though as some of her other choices include state schools such as Wisconsin and U of Washington where she can get more research exposure. Good luck, I think the top schools are a roll of the dice.
My son is friend with two girls that were both over last night. It was interesting.

Both Female

Both 1st gen US, Chinese parents

In terms of the more subjective stuff, they are both actively engaged. Too my untrained eye and less than fully informed, they seem about equal.

Both have perfect GPAs, loaded with APs ... Objectively (same school, same classes) equal.

The girl that got a ACT = 33 was accepted at Yale and MIT (intent on majoring in non STEM). The girl with an ACT = 35 has been rejected by every IVY/ IVY equivalent so far (intent of studying STEM).

This was fascinating. Here is my take ... these are guesses and opinions.

The YALE/ MIT girl could have presented herself much better (essays, etc.)

The YALE/ MIT girls more subjective things (say violin player vs. marching band/ tuba player) was more attractive

A 33 is a non STEM program is more competitive in that (non STEM) arena than a 35 is in the STEM arena. By way of example, the ability to run a short distance in X time. X time might be a non starter in track and field but X time will make you a rock star as a wide receiver. This goes back to my first point, the ability to write thoughtfully (per the essays) might be more important in non STEM vs. in STEM.

Lastly, if the lottery ticket analogy is mostly true, the one girl pulled two winning lottery ticket and the other was unlucky. The truth is probably in the middle.

- Opinions supplied by Tiger Dad :sharebeer

livesoft
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by livesoft » Fri Mar 16, 2018 10:02 am

My daughter is an engineer. She got an 800 on the SAT writing/essay part back when there was a 3-part 2400 total best score. During high school, she also had a job as a model in advertisements, another job as a Java programmer, and another job as retail clerk. Engineers are not all dorks.
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GCD
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by GCD » Fri Mar 16, 2018 10:07 am

livesoft wrote:
Fri Mar 16, 2018 10:02 am
My daughter is an engineer. She got an 800 on the SAT writing/essay part back when there was a 3-part 2400 total best score. During high school, she also had a job as a model in advertisements, another job as a Java programmer, and another job as retail clerk. Engineers are not all dorks.
Absolutely not all. But there is a trend.

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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by timmy » Fri Mar 16, 2018 10:22 am

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GCD
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by GCD » Fri Mar 16, 2018 10:41 am

And I would urge people not to be offended by nerd, dork, etc. As I understand it there is an emerging "nerd culture" and I'm sure many people on this board think of themselves as nerds. I know I mean no offense at using the term. I hope none is taken.

shawndoggy
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by shawndoggy » Fri Mar 16, 2018 12:02 pm

GCD wrote:
Fri Mar 16, 2018 10:41 am
And I would urge people not to be offended by nerd, dork, etc. As I understand it there is an emerging "nerd culture" and I'm sure many people on this board think of themselves as nerds. I know I mean no offense at using the term. I hope none is taken.
This. The rest of the story with my son is that I said "what do you expect? The dorks run the world!"

MnD
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by MnD » Fri Mar 16, 2018 12:32 pm

The computer science, physics and engineering nerds (most in grad school) my daughter hangs out with climb 14'ers (even in the winter when they ski up them), do extended backpack and hut trips, party, rock climb and regularly enjoy a variety of fine craft beers and other adult substances that are legal in Colorado. The conversations are way above the level of typical early 20-somethings but it certainly isn't a bunch of duds playing video games in some parents basement. And thanks to decent paying student jobs and consulting gigs most of them have money. Things like a group oft them hopping on a plane for a long weekend in San Francisco and renting an Air BnB in a great location isn't a burden for them. If that's nerd life - sign me up!

welldone
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by welldone » Fri Mar 16, 2018 12:40 pm

I think it is hard to remember that applying to MIT, or equivalent, in STEM is basically asking to be compared to the best of the best of the best (with honors) in STEM in a very crowded field of applicants. Applying to MIT in a non STEM major means that you have a better chance of standing out in a smaller crowd. Applying against the 'conventional wisdom' at the most selective schools is one of the best ways to pick the lottery ticket with the best chance of winning, as long as it is still understood to be a long shot for any highly qualified applicant.

I listened to a roundtable discussion with admissions officers from some of the most highly selective colleges and universities in the US a few years back. The Harvard admissions officer tried to explain to a room of parents from Scarsdale, NY that if their child wasn't doing research (with a college professor, a private company or gov't) in the field of mathematics while they were in high school, that student probably shouldn't apply to the math program at Harvard. That was the competition at Harvard in the field of mathematics. Could a very bright, hard working student get accepted? Sure...but not necessarily a smart choice for your lottery ticket purchase.

If you are good at music (1st chair at your high school) but not playing at a professional/near-professional level - applying to Julliard is a long shot (to put it mildly). 6' 0" tall high school basketball star? Probably should let go the idea of being recruited to play at Duke. It is the same with academics as a 'hook'.

There are literally tens of thousands of applicants with perfect or near perfect test scores, 4.0 UW GPAs and wonderful ECs. Many of them will be accepted to their 'dream school'. Many others won't and they may well be confused, angry and/or sad when this happens. Keeping it in perspective is important, as is not trying to determine if someone who wins their lottery ticket 'deserved' it over someone whose lottery ticket didn't get picked. A 35 vs. a 33 isn't going to be the piece of the application which determines which highly qualified applicant gets accepted. There are so many factors which determine admission at a highly selective college that those of us looking in can't see that it is futile to try to figure it out.

The OP's son already has several excellent choices of schools available to him. I can't wait to hear the rest of the decisions as they come in later this month and find out which school he decides to attend.

2pedals
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by 2pedals » Fri Mar 16, 2018 1:12 pm

..deleted..
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GCD
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by GCD » Fri Mar 16, 2018 1:41 pm

welldone wrote:
Fri Mar 16, 2018 12:40 pm
There are literally tens of thousands of applicants with perfect or near perfect test scores, 4.0 UW GPAs and wonderful ECs.
Yes, and there are over 25,000 public high schools in the US. Which means there are over 25,000 valedictorians each year who probably give passing thought to applying for one of Harvard's 1700ish freshman slots. If you added up all the Ivy's freshman slots, they could not accommodate every valedictorian in the country.

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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by LadyGeek » Fri Mar 16, 2018 2:10 pm

This thread has run its course and is locked (topic exhausted, no added value to continue). See: Locked Topics
Moderators or site admins may lock a topic (set it so no more replies may be added) when a violation of posting policy has occurred. Occasionally, even if there are no overt violations of posting policy, a topic (or thread) will reach a point where the information content of the discussion has been essentially exhausted and further replies are much more likely to cause distress to the community than add anything of value.
Update: See below.
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by LadyGeek » Fri Mar 16, 2018 9:51 pm

After receiving several PMs, this thread is now unlocked to continue the discussion.

Please stay on-topic and state your concerns in a civil manner.
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timmy
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by timmy » Fri Mar 16, 2018 10:31 pm

welldone wrote:
Fri Mar 16, 2018 12:40 pm
I think it is hard to remember that applying to MIT, or equivalent, in STEM is basically asking to be compared to the best of the best of the best (with honors) in STEM in a very crowded field of applicants. Applying to MIT in a non STEM major means that you have a better chance of standing out in a smaller crowd. Applying against the 'conventional wisdom' at the most selective schools is one of the best ways to pick the lottery ticket with the best chance of winning, as long as it is still understood to be a long shot for any highly qualified applicant.

I listened to a roundtable discussion with admissions officers from some of the most highly selective colleges and universities in the US a few years back. The Harvard admissions officer tried to explain to a room of parents from Scarsdale, NY that if their child wasn't doing research (with a college professor, a private company or gov't) in the field of mathematics while they were in high school, that student probably shouldn't apply to the math program at Harvard. That was the competition at Harvard in the field of mathematics. Could a very bright, hard working student get accepted? Sure...but not necessarily a smart choice for your lottery ticket purchase.

If you are good at music (1st chair at your high school) but not playing at a professional/near-professional level - applying to Julliard is a long shot (to put it mildly). 6' 0" tall high school basketball star? Probably should let go the idea of being recruited to play at Duke. It is the same with academics as a 'hook'.

There are literally tens of thousands of applicants with perfect or near perfect test scores, 4.0 UW GPAs and wonderful ECs. Many of them will be accepted to their 'dream school'. Many others won't and they may well be confused, angry and/or sad when this happens. Keeping it in perspective is important, as is not trying to determine if someone who wins their lottery ticket 'deserved' it over someone whose lottery ticket didn't get picked. A 35 vs. a 33 isn't going to be the piece of the application which determines which highly qualified applicant gets accepted. There are so many factors which determine admission at a highly selective college that those of us looking in can't see that it is futile to try to figure it out.
Yes, my sense is that you are more right than not.

MARFEE
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by MARFEE » Sat Mar 17, 2018 12:20 pm

My oldest has similar stats. She is looking at STEM programs. She'll be applying next year. Thank you so much for posting and sharing.

A-Commoner
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by A-Commoner » Sat Mar 17, 2018 6:28 pm

Would applying early decision to MIT have made a difference? Based on some elite schools’ admissions stats that have been released so far, it looks like going ED would have improved your son’s odds of acceptance. Well, maybe not for MIT, but Northwestern for instance had an RD acceptance rate of 10%. But ED increased that to 26%. Given your son’s strong stats and if finances are not an issue, ED may be the game changer. Of course ED is not for everyone but for parents who have anticipated and saved for this moment (and are in the income bracket where they won’t qualify for financial aid anyway), you may as well go the ED route.

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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by timmy » Sat Mar 17, 2018 8:59 pm

A-Commoner wrote:
Sat Mar 17, 2018 6:28 pm
Would applying early decision to MIT have made a difference? Based on some elite schools’ admissions stats that have been released so far, it looks like going ED would have improved your son’s odds of acceptance. Well, maybe not for MIT, but Northwestern for instance had an RD acceptance rate of 10%. But ED increased that to 26%. Given your son’s strong stats and if finances are not an issue, ED may be the game changer. Of course ED is not for everyone but for parents who have anticipated and saved for this moment (and are in the income bracket where they won’t qualify for financial aid anyway), you may as well go the ED route.
Good question ...

Yes, I believe your general statement is correct, both the benefit and caveat.

He applied early action at both MIT and Caltech. He was deferred. Neither accepted or rejected but bumped to the pool of regular decision applicants. He was ultimately rejected by both. On the positive side, it could be interpreted that you have good enough stats to get in. On the negative side, they ultimately found someone better (smarter, skills, fit, etc.) in the general pool.

Early action is non binding. You don't need to accept until May 1.

Early decision is binding. As soon as you receive a nod that you are in, you agree to cease all searching. NU does early decision. Neither MIT or Caltech do early decision (I believe).

If MIT had offered early decision, we would have gone that route.

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TomatoTomahto
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by TomatoTomahto » Sat Mar 17, 2018 9:08 pm

A-Commoner wrote:
Sat Mar 17, 2018 6:28 pm
Would applying early decision to MIT have made a difference? Based on some elite schools’ admissions stats that have been released so far, it looks like going ED would have improved your son’s odds of acceptance. Well, maybe not for MIT, but Northwestern for instance had an RD acceptance rate of 10%. But ED increased that to 26%. Given your son’s strong stats and if finances are not an issue, ED may be the game changer. Of course ED is not for everyone but for parents who have anticipated and saved for this moment (and are in the income bracket where they won’t qualify for financial aid anyway), you may as well go the ED route.
The ED vs RD odds are complicated. The ED applicants are not identical to RD applicants, so it is difficult to make much of the statistical differences in admit rate. For example, while not a factor at MIT, most athletic recruits apply ED.
Okay, I get it; I won't be political or controversial. The Earth is flat.

msj16
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by msj16 » Sat Mar 17, 2018 9:28 pm

I had heard that to get into the tippy-top schools, one has to be nationally ranked in something - not just regionally or state ranked. I am not sure if that is true but the students I know who got into Caltech or MIT were nationally ranked.

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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by A-Commoner » Sat Mar 17, 2018 9:54 pm

timmy wrote:
Sat Mar 17, 2018 8:59 pm
A-Commoner wrote:
Sat Mar 17, 2018 6:28 pm
Would applying early decision to MIT have made a difference? Based on some elite schools’ admissions stats that have been released so far, it looks like going ED would have improved your son’s odds of acceptance. Well, maybe not for MIT, but Northwestern for instance had an RD acceptance rate of 10%. But ED increased that to 26%. Given your son’s strong stats and if finances are not an issue, ED may be the game changer. Of course ED is not for everyone but for parents who have anticipated and saved for this moment (and are in the income bracket where they won’t qualify for financial aid anyway), you may as well go the ED route.
Good question ...

Yes, I believe your general statement is correct, both the benefit and caveat.

He applied early action at both MIT and Caltech. He was deferred. Neither accepted or rejected but bumped to the pool of regular decision applicants. He was ultimately rejected by both. On the positive side, it could be interpreted that you have good enough stats to get in. On the negative side, they ultimately found someone better (smarter, skills, fit, etc.) in the general pool.

Early action is non binding. You don't need to accept until May 1.

Early decision is binding. As soon as you receive a nod that you are in, you agree to cease all searching. NU does early decision. Neither MIT or Caltech do early decision (I believe).

If MIT had offered early decision, we would have gone that route.
My daughter was in a similar situation last year. She had strong stats. ACT 34, GPA 3.95 UW, captain of her HS scholastic bowl team that made it to nationals, placing in the top 10% in 2016-2017. My daughter was a consistent top scorer in scholastic bowl competitions regionally and statewide. She could do very well in Jeopardy.

In her junior year in high school, she did genomics research with a Chem professor at a local university in the Midwest (we have since moved to CA). Their work got published in the Federation of American Societies in Experimental Biology journal in 2016. She was cited as 3rd author. Science fair awards, NMS, marching band, tennis varsity team, volunteering at local hospital....yada yada....she did all that.

Given all that, she applied to the usual elite colleges in the Midwest and west coast. Like your son, she got accepted at Notre Dame. Her declared major was biology, though. She also got the nod at UCLA, UIUC, Grinnell in Iowa. But she got waitlisted at her dream school, U Chicago. Also waitlisted at Wash U in St Louis. Rejected at Northwestern.

She is now a happy freshman at UCLA. In hindsight, I think U Chicago, Northwestern, and Wash U were very tough terrains for her kind of applicant (Asian female). These schools’ Common Data Sets show their student populations to skew female, with heavy Asian representation. In other words, she was competing against others with same profiles like her. It was hard for her to stand out in the crowd. Notre Dame was friendlier terrain since it skews male and has fewer Asians, hence less competition. UCLA of course is race blind.

She picked UCLA due to its stronger reputation in biology and medicine, higher global prestige compared to Notre Dame (especially in Asia), and she/we just wanted to get out of snowy Midwest.

The moral of our story, I suppose, is to compete in places where you have less competition.

timmy
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by timmy » Wed Mar 21, 2018 9:08 pm

Yes, I think that is good advice.

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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by timmy » Tue Mar 27, 2018 9:39 pm

Accepted:

**Notre Dame
**U of IL (engineering)
**Rose-Hulman
**Purdue (engineering)
**Vanderbilt

Waitlisted:

**U of Chicago

Rejected:

**Caltech
**MIT
**Harvey Mudd

Still waiting:

**Cornell
**Stanford

CedarWaxWing
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by CedarWaxWing » Tue Mar 27, 2018 10:24 pm

GCD wrote:
Fri Mar 16, 2018 10:41 am
And I would urge people not to be offended by nerd, dork, etc. As I understand it there is an emerging "nerd culture" and I'm sure many people on this board think of themselves as nerds. I know I mean no offense at using the term. I hope none is taken.
I thought those terms were compliments!

M

welldone
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by welldone » Tue Mar 27, 2018 10:49 pm

timmy wrote:
Tue Mar 27, 2018 9:39 pm
Accepted:

**Notre Dame
**U of IL (engineering)
**Rose-Hulman
**Purdue (engineering)
**Vanderbilt
...
Those are some incredible schools, has your son shown any preference within his current choices? I would also love to hear a post-mortem (if you would be willing) after the final choice has been made...what factors went into final choice, lessons learned that others can use in the future, dos and do nots, etc.

timmy
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by timmy » Wed Mar 28, 2018 8:45 am

Yes. Definitely, I'll do that.

travellight
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by travellight » Wed Mar 28, 2018 9:55 pm

I heard decisions are coming out tonight.... keeping my fingers crossed for you!

timmy
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by timmy » Thu Mar 29, 2018 5:51 am

Ah yes, only Stanford remains, and that's tomorrow night. Cornell released last night.

By my math, he has a 2 to 4% chance of getting into Stanford. That's taking into account not applying EA/ ED, his stats, demographics. So no one is holding their breadth :happy :happy :happy

Accepted:

**Notre Dame
**U of IL (engineering)
**Rose-Hulman
**Purdue (engineering)
**Vanderbilt

Waitlisted:

**U of Chicago
**Cornell

Rejected:

**Caltech
**MIT
**Harvey Mudd

Still waiting:

**Stanford

wrongfunds
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by wrongfunds » Thu Mar 29, 2018 7:20 am

So, obviously he is going to Stanford if he get in.

But otherwise, where is he going? Have you visited the campus? If he is deciding between few of them, please do visit those places before making final decision. I never understood what kids see by visiting but I understand it is very important for them. Personally, I applied and came to graduate school from 10K miles across the ocean without having *any* idea how it was going to be.

But then again, I can never compare myself a FOB person to my genuine American kids :-)

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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by timmy » Thu Mar 29, 2018 8:16 am

wrongfunds wrote:
Thu Mar 29, 2018 7:20 am
So, obviously he is going to Stanford if he get in.

But otherwise, where is he going? Have you visited the campus? If he is deciding between few of them, please do visit those places before making final decision. I never understood what kids see by visiting but I understand it is very important for them. Personally, I applied and came to graduate school from 10K miles across the ocean without having *any* idea how it was going to be.

But then again, I can never compare myself a FOB person to my genuine American kids :-)
I would say the only "dream school" was MIT. On that, he's mentally/emotionally moved on. It took about 2 days of being down.

Stanford is attractive because it is Stanford. :? Yes, we went there last year. Yes, a very nice place. Of course, the weather is a big draw. This is obviously not objective, but if his desire to go to MIT was 10 and the general desire to go to a good school is 8. Then the desire for Stanford is 8.2678 on that 10 point scale.

Cost wise ... We will see. All his accepted schools are costing within a narrow band (not going to drive the decision). (There is a general misconception that a State School will be the cheapest. That is not the case here in Illinois. U of IL is a hair under 40k per year.) Except Vanderbilt (just accepted there yesterday) ... We are not expecting merit or need based funds, so their cost would drop it from consideration. We will attempt a negotiation with Vanderbilt, but don't expect success. (For the cost of an email and phone call, it's still worth trying.)

In terms of Stanford, because it is not a real option yet, it is hard to put a premium on it. Is it worth $10k per year more than the other schools. $20k? $30k? Anyway, I hate burning mental energy on hypotheticals. If we fall into the situation, we will work our way through the question.

Once we hear back from Stanford and finally understand the playing field ... schools accepted and actual cost ... we will go into decision making mode. On that note, my wife and I have been refreshing our view on what we can/will fund and what we expect the kids to contribute through work. We have a pretty good framework and have been discussing it with our kids. Obviously, our oldest is most interested and the youngest is least interested.

student
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by student » Thu Mar 29, 2018 8:46 am

timmy wrote:
Thu Mar 29, 2018 8:16 am
Cost wise ... We will see. All his accepted schools are costing within a narrow band (not going to drive the decision). (There is a general misconception that a State School will be the cheapest. That is not the case here in Illinois. U of IL is a hair under 40k per year.) Except Vanderbilt (just accepted there yesterday) ... We are not expecting merit or need based funds, so their cost would drop it from consideration. We will attempt a negotiation with Vanderbilt, but don't expect success. (For the cost of an email and phone call, it's still worth trying.)
I don't understand. The "published price" of tuition and fee at UI is $16K-$21K. If you factor room and board, books and etc, then it is $40K.
https://admissions.illinois.edu/Invest/tuition

The "published price" of tuition and fee at Notre Dame is $46K. If you factor the other expenses, it is $67k+. https://admissions.nd.edu/discover/cost-financial-aid/

I assume your son has scholarship from ND but not UI?

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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by timmy » Thu Mar 29, 2018 9:04 am

Correct, the total cost at U of IL is ~$37k. Actually a tad higher with fees related to the school of engineering. Engineering is on the highest end on their published spectrum. And engineering has the highest fees. (Correct, no merit.) In terms of U of IL, I believe it offers some relief based on income. But that is not our case so I don't know the details.

Correct, Notre Dame is offering some need and some merit.

One thing not considered. U of IL accepts APs. Technically, this should lower the overall cost.

feh
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by feh » Thu Mar 29, 2018 9:29 am

timmy wrote:
Thu Mar 29, 2018 8:16 am
In terms of Stanford, because it is not a real option yet, it is hard to put a premium on it. Is it worth $10k per year more than the other schools. $20k? $30k?
No. Not when your other choices are excellent schools.

wrongfunds
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by wrongfunds » Thu Mar 29, 2018 9:45 am

But you really have to let you kid make that decision, provided you are in a position to "afford" it. You can show him all the numbers but let him be the one to have the full veto power.

timmy
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by timmy » Thu Mar 29, 2018 10:32 am

YES! Of all the posts here, you stated it best. Within the framework, the decision is his! In sum, he'll have 3 to 6 great choices that he can attend at his decision.

2kidsmom
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by 2kidsmom » Thu Mar 29, 2018 5:31 pm

Adding here that the deciding factor for my two was how much credit the school accepted and the ability to start graduate school while on scholarship for undergrad.

Both of mine went in with 30 plus hours (check out the CLEP test for language BTW).

That lead to the first kid starting graduate school while still a senior (you also need to check if the school allows this) while still on scholarship and the school then offered him a fellowship for graduate school based on his performance in the grad classes while an undergrad.

The second kid is on track to graduate in 3 years, and her adviser is suggesting she go straight to a PhD, bypassing a masters (never heard of this until he suggested it).

Both are in Honors colleges at a public universities. The second one had the stats for Ivy league but wanted nothing to do with it. Her reasoning was, more money from the public school and less competition for stuff I want to do such as internships (which has turned out to be quite true).

Skipping years of school is also cost effective, so the amount of incoming credit a school will accept is something to think about as well when deciding.

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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by random_walker_77 » Thu Mar 29, 2018 9:43 pm

Congrats. One factor to consider amongst schools is the ease of getting the classes you want, and the ease of getting into the department you want. At some schools, it's hard to graduate in 4 years because of oversubscribed classes so you have to get lucky w/ lotteries to make it through in 4 years. A 5th year just to fill in hard-to-schedule classes would be awfully expensive.

Also, some schools close classes to non-majors. So, for example, if you want to take that interesting CS class, you need to be a declared CS major. And maybe you need to have a 3.9 college GPA to get accepted into the CS department. Which means that you might be better off at a different university (perhaps less reputable) where you are more likely to be able to do the major you want to do.

Then there are dream schools like Stanford where, once you're in, you can choose any major, take any class, and have the flexibility to easily change majors.

Big Dog
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by Big Dog » Thu Mar 29, 2018 9:57 pm

No. Not when your other choices are excellent schools.
I disagree, if the OP has the cash to pay it. The top 3 for Engineering (in alpha order) are Cal, MIT and Stanford. And then everyone else. Been that way for years. Of course, the downside is that a private at full price is ~70k/yr, so it would be $30k more than UIUC.

Also disagree with others about the value of AP courses at a school like MIT or Stanford. But obviously, others have a different pov.

Big Dog
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by Big Dog » Thu Mar 29, 2018 10:02 pm

The second kid is on track to graduate in 3 years, and her adviser is suggesting she go straight to a PhD, bypassing a masters (never heard of this until he suggested it).
It is actually quite common to go directly to a PhD program, without a MA/MS. In fact, top PhD programs won't give much credit for the earlier grad classes.

ncbill
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by ncbill » Fri Mar 30, 2018 8:45 am

timmy wrote:
Thu Mar 29, 2018 9:04 am
Correct, the total cost at U of IL is ~$37k. Actually a tad higher with fees related to the school of engineering. Engineering is on the highest end on their published spectrum. And engineering has the highest fees. (Correct, no merit.) In terms of U of IL, I believe it offers some relief based on income. But that is not our case so I don't know the details.

Correct, Notre Dame is offering some need and some merit.

One thing not considered. U of IL accepts APs. Technically, this should lower the overall cost.
If your kid could defer for a year, U of IL could be much cheaper:

http://www.il.ngb.army.mil/Jobs/Recruit ... efits.aspx
Last edited by ncbill on Fri Mar 30, 2018 3:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.

student
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by student » Fri Mar 30, 2018 8:52 am

Big Dog wrote:
Thu Mar 29, 2018 10:02 pm
The second kid is on track to graduate in 3 years, and her adviser is suggesting she go straight to a PhD, bypassing a masters (never heard of this until he suggested it).
It is actually quite common to go directly to a PhD program, without a MA/MS. In fact, top PhD programs won't give much credit for the earlier grad classes.
This is indeed true. Many top programs prefer Ph.D. students over MA/MS students. Ph.D. students typically have higher stipends. There is nothing to stop one from getting ones MA/MS after two years and leave.

GCD
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by GCD » Fri Mar 30, 2018 2:57 pm

student wrote:
Fri Mar 30, 2018 8:52 am
Big Dog wrote:
Thu Mar 29, 2018 10:02 pm
The second kid is on track to graduate in 3 years, and her adviser is suggesting she go straight to a PhD, bypassing a masters (never heard of this until he suggested it).
It is actually quite common to go directly to a PhD program, without a MA/MS. In fact, top PhD programs won't give much credit for the earlier grad classes.
This is indeed true. Many top programs prefer Ph.D. students over MA/MS students. Ph.D. students typically have higher stipends. There is nothing to stop one from getting ones MA/MS after two years and leave.
Yeah, it all depends on the program. Some programs, especailly those without a PhD, make you write a thesis to get your MA. Many PhD programs just grant you an MA along the way once you rack up enough credits without requiring you to write a thesis. Again, very program specific, but generally you get credit in a PhD program if you have finished a masters with thesis somewhere, but if you just have some grad school credit or a MA without a thesis it isn't taken very seriously and you probably won't get (much) transfer credit.

inbox788
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by inbox788 » Fri Mar 30, 2018 3:22 pm

welldone wrote:
Tue Mar 27, 2018 10:49 pm
timmy wrote:
Tue Mar 27, 2018 9:39 pm
Accepted:

**Notre Dame
**U of IL (engineering)
**Rose-Hulman
**Purdue (engineering)
**Vanderbilt
...
Those are some incredible schools, has your son shown any preference within his current choices? I would also love to hear a post-mortem (if you would be willing) after the final choice has been made...what factors went into final choice, lessons learned that others can use in the future, dos and do nots, etc.
Congrats to an excellent student! I was aware of U of IL reputation and was a standout among the group, but was a little surprised by how high Purdue and Cornell came in these rankings (maybe depends on particular field vs overall undergraduate engineering). If the student already knows what particular field they're going into, it might be time to take a deeper look into the size and quality of the opportunities at these particular schools. Or if the student is not decided, then other factors may be more important. Best of luck!

https://www.usnews.com/best-colleges/ra ... -doctorate

2kidsmom
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by 2kidsmom » Fri Mar 30, 2018 4:42 pm

Interesting that so many of you had heard of skipping over the Master's and going to a PhD, I thought it was pretty strange but apparently not!

livesoft
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by livesoft » Fri Mar 30, 2018 6:02 pm

When I got a PhD many years ago, a Masters degree was only for folks who couldn't or wouldn't go on to complete the PhD, so it was a participation trophy. Clearly, that's not the situation in every graduate program, but I think it is in many of them.
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timmy
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by timmy » Fri Mar 30, 2018 9:05 pm

FINAL LIST

Accepted:

**Notre Dame
**U of IL (engineering)
**Rose-Hulman
**Purdue (engineering)
**Vanderbilt

Waitlisted:

**U of Chicago
**Cornell
**Stanford

Rejected:

**Caltech
**MIT
**Harvey Mudd

GCD
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by GCD » Fri Mar 30, 2018 9:11 pm

2kidsmom wrote:
Fri Mar 30, 2018 4:42 pm
Interesting that so many of you had heard of skipping over the Master's and going to a PhD, I thought it was pretty strange but apparently not!
It's really a matter of semantics. You could take two years to do a MA and then 5 more to get your PhD, or you could take 7 years to get your PhD and along the way when you rack up a certain amount of credits they just give you an MA. By "skipping" the MA you aren't shortening the overall amount of time it takes to get the PhD.

welldone
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by welldone » Fri Mar 30, 2018 10:15 pm

timmy wrote:
Fri Mar 30, 2018 9:05 pm
FINAL LIST

Accepted:

**Notre Dame
**U of IL (engineering)
**Rose-Hulman
**Purdue (engineering)
**Vanderbilt

Waitlisted:

**U of Chicago
**Cornell
**Stanford
Is your son thinking about working his waitlist options or making a decision based solely on his current acceptances? He has great options...can't wait to hear his final decision.

Big Dog
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by Big Dog » Fri Mar 30, 2018 10:38 pm

It's really a matter of semantics. You could take two years to do a MA and then 5 more to get your PhD, or you could take 7 years to get your PhD and along the way when you rack up a certain amount of credits they just give you an MA.
Or, you could skip the MA and get a PhD in ~5 years. Here's an example of Duke's time to degree. Humanitites takes ~7.

https://gradschool.duke.edu/about/stati ... statistics

A-Commoner
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Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Post by A-Commoner » Sat Mar 31, 2018 1:44 am

My friend’s daughter got word today of being accepted at Stanford...after having been rejected by USC, Pomona, Grinnell. Her only other acceptance was UIUC which she was resigned to attending. Then Stanford came calling. What a day.

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