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On ‎4‎/‎30‎/‎2019 at 11:23 AM, chet said:

Were you driving a tractor?

Prius

 

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End of semester moving tip: choose Enterprise Truck Rental (cargo van for me) over U-Haul. With the free unlimited miles, my 600 mile Maryland to NC round trip will run me about $93. Similar U-Haul vehicle has a $0.79 a mile charge unless I'm missing something. No thanks.

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10 hours ago, Fear The Turtle said:

End of semester moving tip: choose Enterprise Truck Rental (cargo van for me) over U-Haul. With the free unlimited miles, my 600 mile Maryland to NC round trip will run me about $93. Similar U-Haul vehicle has a $0.79 a mile charge unless I'm missing something. No thanks.

I've rented an enclosed trailer from U-Haul in the past. You can rent one way. Picked up in Louisville and dropped off blocks from my house in Wisconsin. 3 day rental was like $75.  

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On 4/30/2019 at 11:23 AM, chet said:

Were you driving a tractor?

Close to 50 miles are one lane and you go over a mountain 

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19 minutes ago, HellToupee said:

Close to 50 miles are one lane and you go over a mountain 

Don't give me excuses; give me solutions.

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18 hours ago, HellToupee said:

Close to 50 miles are one lane and you go over a mountain 

It's supposed to be a very pretty drive, though.  :2cents:

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57 minutes ago, johnnycakes said:
19 hours ago, HellToupee said:

Close to 50 miles are one lane and you go over a mountain 

It's supposed to be a very pretty drive, though.  :2cents:

It was really nice when I went a couple of weeks ago.  But it was making my son sick (not good with motion sickness), my wife was looking for any signs of civilization, and I kept thinking how it wouldn't have been fun in the middle of winter.

 

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1 hour ago, johnnycakes said:

It's supposed to be a very pretty drive, though.  :2cents:

Highlight is seeing a confederate flag right after the hairpin turn in North Adams. I did a double take

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Virginia Tech - where one niece is a freshman and one will be next year - just announced they over-enrolled the freshman class by about 1,000 students at 7,500 or so. 

"The university is actively developing options to ensure that every student continues to receive the quality of programs and services they expect. This includes innovative approaches to housing, allowing first-year students to live off campus, and other measures to create an optimal student living experience."

Other than overcrowding, I wonder what these innovative approaches will be? Assigning beds for 12-hour shifts to double the number of people they can accommodate? I'm not even going to tell my sister. She's kind of stressed out about the whole college thing already and this might put her on tilt. I'm sure she'll find out soon enough anyway. 

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Posted (edited)
48 minutes ago, The_Man said:

Virginia Tech - where one niece is a freshman and one will be next year - just announced they over-enrolled the freshman class by about 1,000 students at 7,500 or so. 

"The university is actively developing options to ensure that every student continues to receive the quality of programs and services they expect. This includes innovative approaches to housing, allowing first-year students to live off campus, and other measures to create an optimal student living experience."

Other than overcrowding, I wonder what these innovative approaches will be? Assigning beds for 12-hour shifts to double the number of people they can accommodate? I'm not even going to tell my sister. She's kind of stressed out about the whole college thing already and this might put her on tilt. I'm sure she'll find out soon enough anyway. 

Over-admission has become an increasingly big problem with the mass influx of applications - and most colleages are assuredly more than happy to rake in more coin.

My son just finished his freshman year at the University of Pittsburgh, where they also had an overabundance of freshman. Fortunately freshman and sophomores are guaranteed on-campus housing, but your choice of dorms is very limited. For sophomore year, they developed a random lottery system for students - if you got a good number, you have a good shot at going where you want, but a bad number gets you whatever is left over.

Allowing first-year students off campus housing, such as you indicated at V Tech, sounds like code for "we don't have enough dorms for all our incoming freshmen". Everyone is different, but IMO not living with a bunch of other kids your age makes the acclimation process a lot harder.

 

Edited by zamboni
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At Colgate, while they were constructing new dorms, a certain amount of over-enrolled students had to live in glorified trailers. That isn't so bad compared to subsidized federal housing, military housing, and lower-class housing writ large in society, but for the sixty grand you're paying, you expect a little more.

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for a child going into 9th grade next year, what do you think is the best thing for her to do with her summer this year, from a college admissions perspective?

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39 minutes ago, Long Ball Larry said:

for a child going into 9th grade next year, what do you think is the best thing for her to do with her summer this year, from a college admissions perspective?

Honestly, whatever's going to prepare and inspire her to be successful once high school starts. From a college admissions perspective the clock doesn't start running at all until 9th grade begins, and even that's not nearly as important as later years.

For a 9th grader, the far and away most important thing is to make the best grades possible and position themselves to enroll into AP/accelerated courses as they get into higher grades. The next best thing to do is find some extra-curricular activity that they are truly excited about and willing to devote significant time to over the next 3 years. It can be a sport, or musical instrument, or some other in-school club. Or it can be a community group, or public service agency, or whatever. But the current trend isn't for a kid to do 20 different things with minimal engagement in each - it's to do 1 or 2 things, in a very meaningful way, where they can demonstrate impact and/or leadership by the time fall of senior year rolls around.

The other highly important thing is to enjoy life as much as possible. It's a huge and stressful step up for a girl to start high school. So even though college prep is important, it's not nearly as important as mental and physical health, finding trusted friends, and feeling like there's still time for fun and relaxation. 

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1 hour ago, Long Ball Larry said:

for a child going into 9th grade next year, what do you think is the best thing for her to do with her summer this year, from a college admissions perspective?

Live life, get a part time job if she’s old enough 

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Hoping someone can sanity check this and answer a few questions about AP tests.

Seems like the cost of college is (very roughly) $1k-$2K per credit based on the school.  AP tests award anywhere from 3-6 credits.  So does that essentially mean that each AP test is going to save $3K-$12K (assuming no financial aid), depending on which school and which test?

Also, how does this play into need based financial aid?  For example, if a kid takes enough APs to do only 7 semesters of college instead of 8, are they going to get 7/8 the amount of total financial aid, or is the total amount awarded calculated before AP credits are factored into things?

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11 minutes ago, zoobird said:

Hoping someone can sanity check this and answer a few questions about AP tests.

Seems like the cost of college is (very roughly) $1k-$2K per credit based on the school.  AP tests award anywhere from 3-6 credits.  So does that essentially mean that each AP test is going to save $3K-$12K (assuming no financial aid), depending on which school and which test?

Also, how does this play into need based financial aid?  For example, if a kid takes enough APs to do only 7 semesters of college instead of 8, are they going to get 7/8 the amount of total financial aid, or is the total amount awarded calculated before AP credits are factored into things?

Most universities charge per semester rather than per credit hour (for a full-time student). Unless you get enough credits to graduate a semester early, it really doesn’t save you any money. Financial aid doesn’t factor AP credits, so you get the full amount per semester.

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5 minutes ago, zoobird said:

Hoping someone can sanity check this and answer a few questions about AP tests.

Seems like the cost of college is (very roughly) $1k-$2K per credit based on the school.  AP tests award anywhere from 3-6 credits.  So does that essentially mean that each AP test is going to save $3K-$12K (assuming no financial aid), depending on which school and which test?

Probably, but it depends on the school and your kid's major.  If the university charges by the credit, and AP credits allow your son or daughter to enroll in fewer credits, then yes, each AP credit saves you money on tuition.  Be advised however that some schools charge by the semester, with students being allowed to enroll in however many credits they want (up to a certain limit).  In that pricing system, AP credits may allow your kid to take a lighter schedule but they may or may not save you any money if they still take eight semesters to graduate.

My son attends a university that prices that way.  He came in with 24 credits of AP and dual-enrollment credits.  But he's a chemistry major who is also taking secondary education coursework.  There's a bunch of sequencing in there -- he had to get through Calc III before he could enroll in some of his Chemistry courses, and those courses themselves run in sequences, and the education branch creates another sequence of its own.  The end result is that he's still going to be there for four years to get all his required courses done -- he'll just graduate with more credits than he technically needs.  If he were an English major, which is way less structured, he could have gotten deeper into his major earlier and probably shaved off a semester.

The way I described it may make it sound like that pricing strategy is a screwjob.  It isn't.  The idea behind charging students a flat per-semester tuition is to encourage them to take full loads (you're paying the same whether you take 12 credits or 15, so why not take 15?) which helps them get done on time.  If your student body is primarily residential full-time students, as opposed to a bunch of part-timers, it makes a lot of sense.  It just happens to take some of the shine off AP credit sometimes.

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On 5/11/2019 at 8:03 AM, IvanKaramazov said:

Probably, but it depends on the school and your kid's major.  If the university charges by the credit, and AP credits allow your son or daughter to enroll in fewer credits, then yes, each AP credit saves you money on tuition.  Be advised however that some schools charge by the semester, with students being allowed to enroll in however many credits they want (up to a certain limit).  In that pricing system, AP credits may allow your kid to take a lighter schedule but they may or may not save you any money if they still take eight semesters to graduate.

My son attends a university that prices that way.  He came in with 24 credits of AP and dual-enrollment credits.  But he's a chemistry major who is also taking secondary education coursework.  There's a bunch of sequencing in there -- he had to get through Calc III before he could enroll in some of his Chemistry courses, and those courses themselves run in sequences, and the education branch creates another sequence of its own.  The end result is that he's still going to be there for four years to get all his required courses done -- he'll just graduate with more credits than he technically needs.  If he were an English major, which is way less structured, he could have gotten deeper into his major earlier and probably shaved off a semester.

The way I described it may make it sound like that pricing strategy is a screwjob.  It isn't.  The idea behind charging students a flat per-semester tuition is to encourage them to take full loads (you're paying the same whether you take 12 credits or 15, so why not take 15?) which helps them get done on time.  If your student body is primarily residential full-time students, as opposed to a bunch of part-timers, it makes a lot of sense.  It just happens to take some of the shine off AP credit sometimes.

 

I'd think about it as more of a "value for your money" question.  Four scenarios come to mind:

  1. The school gives AP credit.  You get enough credits, combined with full course loads in other semesters to graduate a semester early. (Outcome:  Same degree, less $$$)
  2. The school gives AP credit.  You take less classes for the same amount of money, and use the lighter course load to spend more time on studying.  (Outcome:  Same degree, greater understanding of the subject matter)
  3. The school gives AP credit.  You take less classes for the same amount of money, and use the lighter course load to spend more time on partying.  (Outcome:  Same degree, less brain cells)
  4. The school allows you to skip classes where you get strong AP test scores (aka you get to skip freshman english), but doesn't give credit.  This lets you take more high level classes, less entry level classes, and potentially pick up a minor or 2.  (Outcome: more education for the same money) 

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Posted (edited)

Okay, we’re starting to really focus on college visits and the admissions process now for my kid, who is finishing up his Junior year. Any thoughts, insights, comments on any of the schools we are considering, or schools we should be considering are greatly appreciated. By way of background, my son is interested in applying to engineering (probably mechanical but not for sure yet).  A good/fun sports program to root for is a plus. A non-snow climate is a plus. Close to a bigger city is a plus. But none of the foregoing are deal-killers. GPA is in the 4.22 range, may be a bit higher after this semester. This probably puts him in top 10% of his school, but not top 6% (which gets you auto-admit at UT).  His school does limit the number of 5.0 classes students can take each year. He’s pretty close to max rigor, but has a few Bs and B+s mixed in. Got a 35 composite on his ACT. Will be taking Math 2 and Physics SAT Subject Tests on June 1.  No idea how he’ll do.

Schools visited so far:

University of Texas at Austin

Texas A&M

UCLA

University of Southern California (his top choice)

Boston University

Northeastern

Schools currently scheduled to visit:

Notre Dame (attending two week engineering camp in June)

Northwestern

Georgia Tech

Clemson (Calhoun Honors)

 

Duke, Vanderbilt and Berkeley are on the radar, but we haven’t scheduled visits yet because we think the chances of him getting in are very slim. Northwestern is really only an option if he decides to do ED there. Any thoughts from those of you with background in admissions or that have gone through this with your kids is greatly appreciated.  My wife and I know little to nothing about engineering and this is our first time going through this process.

Thanks!

 

Edited by bigbottom
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Latest update:  Duke and Berkeley are out of the running. Michigan is now a consideration. 

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Posted (edited)
39 minutes ago, bigbottom said:

Latest update:  Duke and Berkeley are out of the running. Michigan is now a consideration. 

Starting in the fall, I will have 4 nieces and nephews (all from the same family) at Northeastern.  They have had nothing but great things to say about it. 

Two of my nephews have fantastic coop jobs that are going to look amazing on a resume when college students need to separate themselves after graduation.   

I visited a ton of schools with my daughter and Northeastern stood out to me as the one I would have chosen as the best.

Edited by NewlyRetired

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Posted (edited)
6 minutes ago, NewlyRetired said:

Starting in the fall, I will have 4 nieces and nephews (all from the same family) at Northeastern.  They have had nothing but great things to say about it. 

Two of my nephews have fantastic coop jobs that are going to look amazing on a resume when college students need to separate themselves after graduation.   

Thanks for the feedback.  This is the big pull for Northeastern (despite not having big time sports). My son’s stated goal is to GET A JOB after graduation. The co-ops are huge in terms of real life experience. I hear that Georgia Tech is good in that regard as well. It’s also one of the reasons why he’s wary of schools in small out of the way college towns. Appears to be less opportunity for internships and co-ops. His mom and I would love for him to go to Notre Dame, but it’s lower on his list because he wants to be near a big city with the opportunities it provides. 

Edited by bigbottom
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Just now, bigbottom said:

Yeah, this is the big pull for Northeastern (despite not having big time sports). My son’s stated goal is to GET A JOB after graduation. 

I know it is not "big time" per say, but my nephews love the hockey games.  The atmosphere at the games is said to be fabulous.

oh and by the way, your son is ahead of >90% of kids his age with that stated goal.  Getting good grades and a co op job is going to set him up nicely after he graduates.

 

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BB - 35 on the ACT plus 4.0+ GPA with lots of  AP classes sets him up to pick the non-Ivy (or Duke) he wants to go to.

And he's not top 6% at his school?

 

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1 hour ago, NewlyRetired said:

I know it is not "big time" per say, but my nephews love the hockey games.  The atmosphere at the games is said to be fabulous.

oh and by the way, your son is ahead of >90% of kids his age with that stated goal.  Getting good grades and a co op job is going to set him up nicely after he graduates.

 

Thanks!  He is a pretty pragmatic kid. When looking at majors, one of his primary considerations was the ability to get a decent paying job after graduation.

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Posted (edited)
36 minutes ago, James Daulton said:

BB - 35 on the ACT plus 4.0+ GPA with lots of  AP classes sets him up to pick the non-Ivy (or Duke) he wants to go to.

And he's not top 6% at his school?

 

Private boys school with lots of really smart kids. 285 kids in his class,  so he’d need to have one of the top 17 GPA’s to qualify for top 6%. My guess is he is somewhere in the mid to high 20s.

And I’m not so sure about having his choice of non-Ivy schools. My sense is that most of the schools he is looking at will be difficult to get into given that he’s not a legacy, not an athlete and not an underrepresented minority. Heck, getting into UT Engineering is going to be a long shot I think. But if you’re seeing something I’m not, please share. Thanks!

Edited by bigbottom

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5 hours ago, bigbottom said:

Okay, we’re starting to really focus on college visits and the admissions process now for my kid, who is finishing up his Junior year. Any thoughts, insights, comments on any of the schools we are considering, or schools we should be considering are greatly appreciated. By way of background, my son is interested in applying to engineering (probably mechanical but not for sure yet).  A good/fun sports program to root for is a plus. A non-snow climate is a plus. Close to a bigger city is a plus. But none of the foregoing are deal-killers. GPA is in the 4.22 range, may be a bit higher after this semester. This probably puts him in top 10% of his school, but not top 6% (which gets you auto-admit at UT).  His school does limit the number of 5.0 classes students can take each year. He’s pretty close to max rigor, but has a few Bs and B+s mixed in. Got a 35 composite on his ACT. Will be taking Math 2 and Physics SAT Subject Tests on June 1.  No idea how he’ll do.

Schools visited so far:

University of Texas at Austin

Texas A&M

UCLA

University of Southern California (his top choice)

Boston University

Northeastern

Schools currently scheduled to visit:

Notre Dame (attending two week engineering camp in June)

Northwestern

Georgia Tech

Clemson (Calhoun Honors)

 

Duke, Vanderbilt and Berkeley are on the radar, but we haven’t scheduled visits yet because we think the chances of him getting in are very slim. Northwestern is really only an option if he decides to do ED there. Any thoughts from those of you with background in admissions or that have gone through this with your kids is greatly appreciated.  My wife and I know little to nothing about engineering and this is our first time going through this process.

Thanks!

 

How about Rice?  It checks most of your boxes except for maybe the sports thing...

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2 hours ago, bigbottom said:

Latest update:  Duke and Berkeley are out of the running. Michigan is now a consideration. 

Was going to suggest Michigan if he's going engineering.  Find the schools that are well respected in the major he's interested in.  I don't know why people go to schools where the thing they are interested in isn't very good.  Like going to Duke for Accounting in a state that has UNCC, App State, UNC and Wake.

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Posted (edited)
19 hours ago, Galileo said:

How about Rice?  It checks most of your boxes except for maybe the sports thing...

Yes, Rice ticks a lot of his criteria, except one I didn't mention - he would like to go away for school.  Rice is 10 minutes from our house.  Still trying to talk him into at least looking at it, as you are correct that it appears to be a good fit.

19 hours ago, The Commish said:

Was going to suggest Michigan if he's going engineering.  Find the schools that are well respected in the major he's interested in.  I don't know why people go to schools where the thing they are interested in isn't very good.  Like going to Duke for Accounting in a state that has UNCC, App State, UNC and Wake.

Yeah, we are definitely looking at schools that have good engineering programs.  But there's also the concern that, like most college kids these days, he changes majors.  We'd like him to be at a school that offers other good options.  Georgia Tech is probably the school on his list that is the most limited in that regard (with 78% of students in either engineering or computer/information science).

Thanks for the feedback.

Edited by bigbottom

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1 hour ago, JaxBill said:

@bigbottom Has he looked at UF?

Collectively, we put together a list of about 30 schools for him to research and consider, and UF is one of them. Thus far, he hasn’t mentioned it as one of his top choices. Thoughts?

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31 minutes ago, bigbottom said:

Collectively, we put together a list of about 30 schools for him to research and consider, and UF is one of them. Thus far, he hasn’t mentioned it as one of his top choices. Thoughts?

My daughter is finishing up her freshman year at Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, and it seems like it hits a lot of your son's wishes and might make your wallet happy to boot. It has a number of highly ranked engineering programs and the school emphasizes experiential learning with a goal of preppping students for jobs immediately upon graduation, lessening the need to continue on to grad school. Poly grads make great starting salaries and even the out of state tuition is a deal compared to privates like USC. SLO is a beautiful part of the country and the weather, surfing, wineries are all incredible. The only drawback, imo, is the distance to a major city. About 3-4 hours from either LA or San Jose. 

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@bigbottom I know it has a moderate winter, but have you looked at Purdue?  

I toured there, as well as Vandy and many other schools in the past year. Purdue was very heavy into the engineering programs but offers a nice fallback if your child changes their mind. 

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1 hour ago, bigbottom said:

Collectively, we put together a list of about 30 schools for him to research and consider, and UF is one of them. Thus far, he hasn’t mentioned it as one of his top choices. Thoughts?

UF is big.  We visited UF 11 summers ago when my oldest daughter was a junior in HS and I remember that the curriculum was also big - I was somewhat impressed that there was an entomology major.  I see that UF has about 16 engineering-related undergraduate degrees. We visited the freshmen honors dorm, which were the nicest on campus.

Another consideration is that your son is more likely to be a top student at UF, than say Rice or GT. That may or may not impact him (perhaps his GPA), but I think it adversely affected my daughter who went to an elite school instead of UF.  She went from being a top student in HS to perhaps average in college. She was a little depressed about it at times, but eventually adjusted.  Engineering majors have some of the hardest classes with a high rate of transfer to other majors. If your son majors in Engineering at almost any school in the country, he should be able to find a great job.

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7 hours ago, bigbottom said:

Collectively, we put together a list of about 30 schools for him to research and consider, and UF is one of them. Thus far, he hasn’t mentioned it as one of his top choices. Thoughts?

One thing going for it is that they do a great job of internships and making sure kids can actually find jobs. 

They check the boxes as far as broad range of non Engineering majors if he changes his mind and sports programs. 

Large number of grad programs if he decides to stay. Hospital affiliated with school if he wants to go bio engineering.

Huge competition to get in, especially among in state residents trying to take advantage of cheap tuition and Bright Futures money. 

It's large but most public universities in Florida are.  There is always something going on. Even Summer A/ SummerB semesters the campus is fairly full.

The negatives to me are

- the campus itself is nice but Gainesville has this gritty feel to it like college kids have been wearing it out for decades. If he wants to visit a bigger city, Orlando, Tampa, or Jax are 1 to 2 hours away.

- there's a certain pretentiousness doing the campus visit.  "Hey we're the best in Florida and if you don't like us we'll pick somebody else " isn't said but it's implied. Only college visit where I paid for parking . Campus tour never showed a dorm room, not even a model. (And from what I heard, the dorms are average at best )

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More on UF-

My son graduated from a FL public HS AICE program (basically IB). He had a 4.3ish with pretty good boards but definitely not Merit level.  

He made it in but others who had higher class rankings did not .

Two things that helped him were

- he was a Journalism major not an engineering or sciences major.  He was admitted to PACE. You take your first year of courses entirely online. He still lived just off campus and did the college lifestyle.  If your major requires labs, you can't do PACE. 

- He is an Eagle scout and did a mission trip to Costa  Rica.  

As far as his time at school, it's demanding but he loves it. He's in Sports Journalism and writes for the Alligator.  He is interning this summer at Gainesville Sun where they have him writing special interest pieces like This

Next summer he's looking for a bigger internship preferably out of state.

He's worked his way up covering golf/tennis then softball and he's hoping to get basketball in the winter. 

UF has one of the better Sports Journalism schools and has had interesting classes where they bring in former Gator national writers either in person or via Skype. 

 

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9 hours ago, MrJimmy said:

My daughter is finishing up her freshman year at Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, and it seems like it hits a lot of your son's wishes and might make your wallet happy to boot. It has a number of highly ranked engineering programs and the school emphasizes experiential learning with a goal of preppping students for jobs immediately upon graduation, lessening the need to continue on to grad school. Poly grads make great starting salaries and even the out of state tuition is a deal compared to privates like USC. SLO is a beautiful part of the country and the weather, surfing, wineries are all incredible. The only drawback, imo, is the distance to a major city. About 3-4 hours from either LA or San Jose. 

Thank you for the feedback. Cal Poly should be on our radar. It was actually my number 1 choice when I was applying to architecture school and I got rejected. Ended up attending Cal Poly Pomona and then dropped out of architecture after only a year.  How did your daughter enjoy her first year there?  What is campus life like?  Cal Poly Pomona was more of a commuter school with not so great campus life, but I imagine that SLO is different. 

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Posted (edited)
9 hours ago, Fishboy said:

@bigbottom I know it has a moderate winter, but have you looked at Purdue?  

I toured there, as well as Vandy and many other schools in the past year. Purdue was very heavy into the engineering programs but offers a nice fallback if your child changes their mind. 

Purdue is absolutely on the list. Fantastic engineering program. We are arranging a couple school visits when my son goes to engineering camp at Notre Dame in June. We have a Northwestern visit scheduled and then were debating between Michigan and Purdue (we only have time for one additional visit on this trip).  My son picked Michigan, but we’re still discussing. 

Edited by bigbottom

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1 hour ago, JaxBill said:

More on UF-

My son graduated from a FL public HS AICE program (basically IB). He had a 4.3ish with pretty good boards but definitely not Merit level.  

 

 

Sorry for the slight hijack, but wondering what you can tell me about your experience with Florida Bright Futures. Sounds like my 9th grade son is on the same track that your son was on. We live in Orlando, he attends a public school IB program, one AP class under his belt as a freshman. We are just starting to look towards the college experience and would love to take advantage of Bright Futures if possible, but I don’t know much about it other than the cut and dry details. Any insight would be greatly appreciated.

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36 minutes ago, MindCrime said:

Sorry for the slight hijack, but wondering what you can tell me about your experience with Florida Bright Futures. Sounds like my 9th grade son is on the same track that your son was on. We live in Orlando, he attends a public school IB program, one AP class under his belt as a freshman. We are just starting to look towards the college experience and would love to take advantage of Bright Futures if possible, but I don’t know much about it other than the cut and dry details. Any insight would be greatly appreciated.

Two levels of Bright Futures. If your son graduates from an IB program he should automatically qualify for the highest rate. It is supposed to cover 100 percent tuition but does not cover room and board. But all of the money is generally "stackable", i.e. Bright Futures, Florida Prepaid, other aid and loans get thrown into one bucket. It's a govt program and they could change teh rules at any time. My older son also got Florida Prepaid but his first couple years the max award was 113 a credit hour. They might also make it more selective in the future but the auto-qualify for IB/AICE has been around for awhile. To qualify I think I had to fill out a form with HS guidance counselor and maybe an online registration. Then when you apply or enroll you tell the school that you have Bright Futures.

https://www.floridastudentfinancialaidsg.org/SAPBFMAIN/SAPBFMAIN

 

 

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Posted (edited)
10 hours ago, SoBeDad said:

UF is big.  We visited UF 11 summers ago when my oldest daughter was a junior in HS and I remember that the curriculum was also big - I was somewhat impressed that there was an entomology major.  I see that UF has about 16 engineering-related undergraduate degrees. We visited the freshmen honors dorm, which were the nicest on campus.

Another consideration is that your son is more likely to be a top student at UF, than say Rice or GT. That may or may not impact him (perhaps his GPA), but I think it adversely affected my daughter who went to an elite school instead of UF.  She went from being a top student in HS to perhaps average in college. She was a little depressed about it at times, but eventually adjusted.  Engineering majors have some of the hardest classes with a high rate of transfer to other majors. If your son majors in Engineering at almost any school in the country, he should be able to find a great job.

 

4 hours ago, JaxBill said:

One thing going for it is that they do a great job of internships and making sure kids can actually find jobs. 

They check the boxes as far as broad range of non Engineering majors if he changes his mind and sports programs. 

Large number of grad programs if he decides to stay. Hospital affiliated with school if he wants to go bio engineering.

Huge competition to get in, especially among in state residents trying to take advantage of cheap tuition and Bright Futures money. 

It's large but most public universities in Florida are.  There is always something going on. Even Summer A/ SummerB semesters the campus is fairly full.

The negatives to me are

- the campus itself is nice but Gainesville has this gritty feel to it like college kids have been wearing it out for decades. If he wants to visit a bigger city, Orlando, Tampa, or Jax are 1 to 2 hours away.

- there's a certain pretentiousness doing the campus visit.  "Hey we're the best in Florida and if you don't like us we'll pick somebody else " isn't said but it's implied. Only college visit where I paid for parking . Campus tour never showed a dorm room, not even a model. (And from what I heard, the dorms are average at best )

Thank you both for all of this great information. I spent the morning doing research and Florida does really seem to be a good fit (really good engineering program, lots of good alternative options if he changes majors, warm climate, great sports, good alumni network). The one major hang-up that I see is that they only admit 9% of their freshman class from out of state. That is extremely low, and a whole lot lower than the other state schools we are looking at. And with a lot of big time Florida alums resident in other states, I have to think that the competitiveness for out of state applicants with no ties to the school is incredibly high. Given that a lot of work goes into applying to any particular school, one of our criteria is determining the ROI on applying to a particular school if it will be near impossible to get in.  If we were Florida residents, it would be a no brainer.

p.s.  I’m seeing average GPA for Florida at 4.2 from one source and 4.4 from another. That is incredibly high for a school with a 42% acceptance rate. I’m guessing pretty much every smart kid in Florida applies there. I have to think it’s insanely competitive for out of state applicants. 

Edited by bigbottom

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I am both proud and increasingly frustrated with my daughter (long time readers may remember her issues).

Here are her first 4 semester GPA's

1) 3.725

2) 3.867

3) 3.917

4) 4.000

Total average = 3.881  (summa cum laude is 3.9 at her college which only a tiny % graduate with)

 

And yet all she can say is "I don't really want to go back"

:wall::wall:

 

 

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1 hour ago, bigbottom said:

 

Thank you both for all of this great information. I spent the morning doing research and Florida does really seem to be a good fit (really good engineering program, lots of good alternative options if he changes majors, warm climate, great sports, good alumni network). The one major hang-up that I see is that they only admit 9% of their freshman class from out of state. That is extremely low, and a whole lot lower than the other state schools we are looking at. And with a lot of big time Florida alums resident in other states, I have to think that the competitiveness for out of state applicants with no ties to the school is incredibly high. Given that a lot of work goes into applying to any particular school, one of our criteria is determining the ROI on applying to a particular school if it will be near impossible to get in.  If we were Florida residents, it would be a no brainer.

p.s.  I’m seeing average GPA for Florida at 4.2 from one source and 4.4 from another. That is incredibly high for a school with a 42% acceptance rate. I’m guessing pretty much every smart kid in Florida applies there. I have to think it’s insanely competitive for out of state applicants. 

Ugh...but if he starts doing that Gator jaws arm thingy, you'll never be able to love him again.  Think carefully about this one.  :P

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53 minutes ago, NewlyRetired said:

I am both proud and increasingly frustrated with my daughter (long time readers may remember her issues).

Here are her first 4 semester GPA's

1) 3.725

2) 3.867

3) 3.917

4) 4.000

Total average = 3.881  (summa cum laude is 3.9 at her college which only a tiny % graduate with)

 

And yet all she can say is "I don't really want to go back"

:wall::wall:

 

 

Would getting her own place and maybe you or her mom visiting during the week a couple times a month be a possibility?

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6 hours ago, bigbottom said:

Purdue is absolutely on the list. Fantastic engineering program. We are arranging a couple school visits when my son goes to engineering camp at Notre Dame in June. We have a Northwestern visit scheduled and then were debating between Michigan and Purdue (we only have time for one additional visit on this trip).  My son picked Michigan, but we’re still discussing. 

Would probably be a safety for your son but maybe take a peek at Miami of Ohio. Good engineering, unbelievable campus, and kids I know who go there LOVE it. Kinda remote and not too many big time sports though there’s a lot of school spirit 

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6 hours ago, bigbottom said:

Purdue is absolutely on the list. Fantastic engineering program. We are arranging a couple school visits when my son goes to engineering camp at Notre Dame in June. We have a Northwestern visit scheduled and then were debating between Michigan and Purdue (we only have time for one additional visit on this trip).  My son picked Michigan, but we’re still discussing. 

I'll keep you in the loop at Clemson. My son found a roomate (via all those facebook sites) that's his major at the Honors College so they got their room assigned at the Honors dorm so it feels a bit more real now. His roomate tried to get the rooms that had a view over the stadium (it's right behind the Honors College). He graduates June 10th and then we have a two day parent/kid orientation on campus and move in weekend is August 16-18. I think he's going to love it, but it'll be a big change. He's really independent already, pretty much did all his test prep for SAT/ACT/AP himself and I just reimbursed him.

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My daughter's friend appealed her rejection from USC and they accepted her!  

Another friend was waitlisted at Brown and got an offer yesterday.

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8 minutes ago, chet said:

My daughter's friend appealed her rejection from USC and they accepted her!  

Another friend was waitlisted at Brown and got an offer yesterday.

Did you daughter ever get an offer off the waitlist with Harvard, Chet?  

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@bigbottom, I'm an engineer (BSME at Berkeley and MSME at Georgia Tech). In grad school I met students from all sorts of undergrad engineering schools. Plus, I've hired engineers in both California and in Maryland, so I know the regional schools as well.

If your son's goal is to get a job right out of school, I think that Cal Poly SLO is a great option. Georgia Tech makes good engineers, but I would not recommend it for undergrads. For grad school, sure but as an undergrad, the on campus culture is too southern good ol boy, tradition bound for my taste.

Clemson has a rapidly improving engineering school (focus on automotive), as does USC (focus on biotech).  Penn State is another one that might work for him. 

But if he is willing to go to a smaller school, there are excellent undergrad engineering schools like Bucknell, RIT, etc.

 

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