zotan
Posts: 582
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Colleges and what to do or choose

Sun Aug 20, 2006 10:29 am

Well I'm in my junior year of highschool now. I'm getting really serious about the college search, and am just wondering if you guys have any experience with the following colleges. FWIW, my GPA is currently a 4.4, I haven't taken the SAT or ACT yet, but will starting in October. I know things can change, but I'm really looking into getting some sort of degree in Econ.

1. University of Chicago
2. Columbia University
3. NYU
4. UCLA
5. USC
6. Reed College
7. Claremont Colleges

These are the oens I'm somewhat looking at right now. University of Chicago has been at the top of my list for the longest time. Also, do you guys have any reccomendations for colleges not on my list?

Thanks guys ...

Matt
 
AirCop
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Sun Aug 20, 2006 10:41 am

First of all, the University of Chicago is an excellent world class school. On the negative side is the cost $11,000 a quarter. The question would be do you really want to pay for your education for the rest of your life. UCLA is also excellent and also as a world class faculty, located on the pacific rim where the action will be, and since it appears that you are a California resident, would be much more affordable.
 
watewate
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Sun Aug 20, 2006 10:47 am

Chicago is argualbly the most respected eco school in the world. Personally, if I were *that* sure about wanting to pursue economics (i.e. go for doctoral), I'd save Chicago for grad school and pick a respected undergrad program based on academics and reputation.

I also majored in eco (one of two majors) and it's really a useless degree unless you continue onto grad school/doctorate.
 
vikkyvik
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Sun Aug 20, 2006 11:10 am

Well, I went to USC, so consider my opinion biased from the start (UCLA sucks).

First of all, is the GPA on a 5 point scale? I'm only familiar with 4 point scales. How does the 5 point scale work exactly (e.g., what equals an A or a B, etc.)? 4.4 sounds pretty good to me.

Anyway, I majored in aerospace engineering at USC. Never quite finished, but that's a different story (still hoping to sometime in the future). Had a great time out there. The actual campus is beautiful, but of course, it is on the northern border of South Central. However, in all my time out there, I never had a problem (and I and many of my friends lived in the residential neighborhoods west of campus for a few years).

Beware that fraternity/sorority life is a decent sized thing there, with something like 30% of the students enrolled in one frat/sorority or another if memory serves. However, I personally hate greek life, and I still never felt out of place, or like I had nothing to do.

Its location obviously does not serve USC particularly well in terms of stuff to do outside of college life, but then again, going up to Hollywood and stuff gets old anyway.

Suffice to say, I had a good time and learned a lot at USC. However, choose whatever feels like the best fit for you. I think that probably my only regret is that I didn't go to a smaller school...A place with 14,000+ undergrads can be daunting, and sometimes you feel like you're just a faceless member of a giant herd. But going to the football games makes up for all that  Smile

If you have any specific questions, like why UCLA sucks, or even questions about USC, feel free to PM me or post them here.

Oh, I've only been out to the Claremont Colleges a few times for frisbee tournaments, but I remember that area being pretty nice as well.

Ooo, and another thing, the eye candy at USC and UCLA is freaking awesome. You can entertain yourself for hours just walking around campus. Too bad that for all the beauty, the intelligence is frequently absent  Wink

~Vik
I'm watching Jeopardy. The category is worst Madonna songs. "This one from 1987 is terrible".
 
piercey
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Colleges and what to do or choose

Sun Aug 20, 2006 12:14 pm

Quoting Vikkyvik (Reply 3):
Well, I went to USC, so consider my opinion biased from the start (UCLA sucks).

other way around  Wink

Quoting Vikkyvik (Reply 3):
First of all, is the GPA on a 5 point scale? I'm only familiar with 4 point scales. How does the 5 point scale work exactly (e.g., what equals an A or a B, etc.)? 4.4 sounds pretty good to me.

4.4 Is a weighted grade. He is obviously in a lot of honours classes.

Columbia is the best of the list, but if you can get a scholarship, U of C is amazing.
Well I believe it all is coming to an end. Oh well, I guess we are gonna pretend.
 
Halcyon
Posts: 1622
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Colleges and what to do or choose

Sun Aug 20, 2006 12:22 pm

Quoting Piercey (Reply 4):
4.4 Is a weighted grade.

My idiot school refused to weight my grades (It's against our policy, NO!) even though I took a college class and AP Calc. Pissed me off.  Angry
 
zotan
Posts: 582
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Sun Aug 20, 2006 12:25 pm

My GPA is based on a 5 point scale. Honors and AP classes get you one extra point so long as you get a C or better. An A in AP Chemistry is worth 5 points where an A in say just normal chemistry gets you 4 points. My unweighted GPA is like a 3.9 or something like that.

I'm pretty sure I want to get into economics. I find everything about it fascinating.

Quoting Piercey (Reply 4):

4.4 Is a weighted grade. He is obviously in a lot of honours classes.

Yup ...

AP Chemistry
AP US History
AP Art History
Hnrs Math Analysis
AP English Literature
Spanish 5

Surprisingly my load isn't as bad as I thought it would be. Im only doing about 2-3 hours of homework a night.

Quoting Piercey (Reply 4):
Columbia is the best of the list, but if you can get a scholarship, U of C is amazing.

Does anyone have information on scholarships for U of C? My parents make pretty good money, but 40k+ a year is a ton of money. Anything I can do to help offset the costs would be great.

How about the average admitted GPA, SAT scores, and stuff like that. I've been hard pressed to find this stuff on their website and through google.

Also, would having family go to U of C help my chances of getting in? My aunt went there, but that was more than 30 years ago...
 
misbeehavin
Posts: 607
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Colleges and what to do or choose

Sun Aug 20, 2006 12:27 pm

Quoting ZOTAN (Thread starter):
1. University of Chicago
2. Columbia University
3. NYU
4. UCLA
5. USC
6. Reed College
7. Claremont Colleges

What? No Notre Dame? What kind of list is that!  Wink

I liked Reed College - very interesting school! Almost transferred there too, from Notre Damd (long story).
 
monorail
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Colleges and what to do or choose

Sun Aug 20, 2006 12:43 pm

If you're planning on going to graduate school you should give a lot more consideration to less expensive public schools. When I was in your shoes I wanted to go to a school the likes of a Northwestern or Case Western. As you may guess, those schools carry significant price tags, being high profile, private schools. Scholarships would only have gone so far, even though I did well on the standardized tests, was third in my high school class, and had decent extracurriculars. I knew I wanted to go to graduate school afterward, so I found that by going to a public school, I wouldn't have to dig myself into a deep hole of student debt just to get a bachelors degree. I was a National Merit Finalist, so I got tons of offers from public schools all over the country that would give me a tuition waiver if I came to their school. Ultimately I went for Arizona State. I'll be in a much better position to pay for grad school because I won't have any debt from my undergrad years. I thought of it this way: I'd rather get my MD from Northwestern (etc.) and my BS from Arizona State, then to get my BS from Northwestern, but my MD from a tiny, obscure school. After all, which degree is going to be hanging in my office one day, the MD or the BS?  scratchchin 

Now I don't know your situation so it may differ for you, but it's something to consider
Playoffs? Don't talk about playoffs!
 
piercey
Posts: 2188
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Colleges and what to do or choose

Sun Aug 20, 2006 12:56 pm

Quoting ZOTAN (Reply 6):
How about the average admitted GPA, SAT scores, and stuff like that. I've been hard pressed to find this stuff on their website and through google.

your GPA should be fine, but be aware that some of the higher end schools do take away the weight. No idea about SAT.

Quoting ZOTAN (Reply 6):
Also, would having family go to U of C help my chances of getting in? My aunt went there, but that was more than 30 years ago...

Alumn?
Well I believe it all is coming to an end. Oh well, I guess we are gonna pretend.
 
Cory6188
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Colleges and what to do or choose

Sun Aug 20, 2006 1:29 pm

I give you a lot of credit for having worked so hard in high school thus far - I know, from personal experience, that such a schedule is no walk in the park. I didn't really consider any of the schools that you're interested in (I was more of a rural/suburban type person, hence the Dartmouth choice), but I can give you some general advice.

I know that you're only a junior, but when the time comes, don't let yourself get too stressed out and overwhelmed over the whole college application/admissions thing. I went crazy filling out all of my applications and such and ended up only needing to have submitted one because I got into Dartmouth early decision. Take it one step at a time, and work on them over the summer before school starts. It will make the entire process a heck of a lot easier. Also, college admissions is only getting more and more competitive year after year, so don't beat yourself up if you don't get into the school of your choice. Some of the schools you listed can be impossibly difficult to be accepted to, so please take everything that comes your way with a grain of salt. My chem teacher, who was like a mom to all of her students, always used to tell us that things happen for a reason, and in the end, everything will work out.

Good luck. Getting into college is a long, arduous process, but I'm sure you'll get into a school that will work out great for you.
 
sw733
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Colleges and what to do or choose

Sun Aug 20, 2006 2:28 pm

I completey agree that you should save the expensive schools for grad school if you plan to go that route...I have a friend who went to Southern Illinois for her undergrad to save money (in-state tuition), and now is started at Princeton for grad school this fall...if you work hard, it doesn't really matter where you go for undergrad, you'll learn more than you ever imagined possible at most any respected institution.

In addition, you may realize that, as you mentioned, economics sucks and you want to do something completely different...another reason I'd say hold off and go to a public in-state school or an affordable out-of-state public school. This isn't a knock on you, but I think too many people put too much money into names...University of Chicago, UCLA, etc...these are good schools but you could end up not doing well and wasting money, whereas you could do fantastic at a cheaper school and then move up to the next level for grad school.

I just graduated in May from the University of Kansas, and it was by far the greatest experience of my life...I learned more than I ever imagined, and 90% of it had nothing to do with school, rather they were things that actually matter in life - who I am, what I want, how to manage finances, and being a grown up. I loved it so much that I am actually working for KU now - something I never would have expected when I started in 2002 as an 18 year old (with a funny accent as my friends told me  Wink).

Just follow your heart and what feels best, and that usually isn't wrong  Smile
 
KingAir200
Posts: 668
Joined: Sun May 28, 2006 1:37 pm

Colleges and what to do or choose

Sun Aug 20, 2006 3:20 pm

Quoting ZOTAN (Reply 6):
Surprisingly my load isn't as bad as I thought it would be. Im only doing about 2-3 hours of homework a night.

Only 2-3 hours? I was toppin' out at 30 mins a night when I was in HS. Or maybe that was just senior year. That senioritis gets to you.


Quoting ZOTAN (Thread starter):
1. University of Chicago
2. Columbia University
3. NYU
4. UCLA
5. USC
6. Reed College
7. Claremont Colleges

Columbia, Chicago, and NYU are nowhere near your hometown of San Diego, according to your profile. I'm guessing this isn't a problem for you, but make sure you are comfortable with the distance from home.

Visit your top colleges too, make sure they are right for you. It's always good to apply to a fallback school too, one you are sure that you will get into.
 
AirWillie6475
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Colleges and what to do or choose

Sun Aug 20, 2006 5:01 pm

The only college in that list that you should be interested in outside California would be NYU. Otherwise UCLA or USC will do just fine. If you do decide to go to NY make sure you like the place, going from the best city in the U.S to the freezing hell might be a shock if you haven't any experience.
 
zotan
Posts: 582
Joined: Thu Jan 13, 2005 7:42 am

Colleges and what to do or choose

Mon Aug 21, 2006 8:16 am

Quoting KingAir200 (Reply 12):
Columbia, Chicago, and NYU are nowhere near your hometown of San Diego, according to your profile. I'm guessing this isn't a problem for you, but make sure you are comfortable with the distance from home.

I have a ton of family in Chicago, so that isn't really so bad. New York on the other hand is pretty far from most of my family. I go there a lot, and I love the city. It is somewhat far from home though.

Quoting AirWillie6475 (Reply 13):
The only college in that list that you should be interested in outside California would be NYU.

Any reason for this?

Quoting AirWillie6475 (Reply 13):
going from the best city in the U.S to the freezing hell might be a shock if you haven't any experience.

Yeah .. weather isn't really that big of a deal. I've spent a lot of time in colder places so I'm SOMEWHAT used too it.
 
vikkyvik
Posts: 11765
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Colleges and what to do or choose

Mon Aug 21, 2006 9:22 am

Quoting KingAir200 (Reply 12):
Only 2-3 hours? I was toppin' out at 30 mins a night when I was in HS. Or maybe that was just senior year. That senioritis gets to you.

Haha, me too. I definitely didn't go over an hour or so every night. Then again, I think my senioritis started freshman year....

Quoting AirWillie6475 (Reply 13):
The only college in that list that you should be interested in outside California would be NYU.

My opinion, but I don't think this is sound advice at all (especially if U of Chicago has as good an econ program as it sounds like). Sure, USC is a good school, but it's not quite a GREAT school as of yet. UCLA is probably a bit better (ouch, that hurt), and will be FAR cheaper.

As far as the good school for undergrad vs. grad goes, keep in mind that if you do decently during your undergrad years, there's a good chance that you could go to grad school at the same college (if you wanted to).

~Vik
I'm watching Jeopardy. The category is worst Madonna songs. "This one from 1987 is terrible".
 
LOT767-300ER
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Colleges and what to do or choose

Mon Aug 21, 2006 9:33 am

Quoting ZOTAN (Reply 6):
Surprisingly my load isn't as bad as I thought it would be. Im only doing about 2-3 hours of homework a night.

ROTFLMAO 2-3 hours of homework in HS? Jesus christ I graduated with a 3.85GPA and took AP classes and tests also and I did 2 hours of homework per week.

You need a Tyskie or Carlsberg.
 
kmh1956
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Colleges and what to do or choose

Mon Aug 21, 2006 10:28 am

Quoting ZOTAN (Reply 6):
I'm pretty sure I want to get into economics.

have you looked at the Wharton School of UPenn?
'Somebody tell me why I'm on my own if there's a soulmate for everyone' :Natasha Bedingfield
 
zotan
Posts: 582
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Colleges and what to do or choose

Mon Aug 21, 2006 10:38 am

Quoting LOT767-300ER (Reply 16):
ROTFLMAO 2-3 hours of homework in HS? Jesus christ I graduated with a 3.85GPA and took AP classes and tests also and I did 2 hours of homework per week.

Well aren't you the lucky one ...  Wink

Yea about 2-3 hours a night, depending on what classes I have the next day. I'm on a block schedule with 3 classes one day, and three classes the next. Classes are two hours long so we generally get more homework per night then a school with a normal schedule since we only meet 3 times a week. (I have all 6 on Mondays)

My busy nights are 2-3 hours, and my not so busy ones are only about 15 minutes. Busy being the days I have AP Chem, AP US History, and AP Art History.
 
AirWillie6475
Posts: 2372
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Colleges and what to do or choose

Mon Aug 21, 2006 2:32 pm

Quoting ZOTAN (Reply 14):
Any reason for this?

It's the best out of your list. A friend went there. VERY expensive but well worth it, you'll be set for life. It's very hard to get in but if you pick a less competitive major you might get in. If I had to choose from USC or UCLA, I'd go with USC. A lot of preferential hiring for USC grads depending on what field you major in.

[Edited 2006-08-21 07:34:28]
 
QXatFAT
Posts: 2310
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Mon Aug 21, 2006 2:46 pm

Well are you a minority of any sort? Mexican-American? African-American? American Indian? These can help you get loads of money for college. I got a grip of money for college because I am Mexican-American and my father came here from Mexico. Do you also have ties in with a local company that has something similar to what you want to do with your degree? Here is what I mean, I have my money for college because of scholarships for my familys history (my father and my haritage) and my company I work for has offerd to pay for my college as well because it is in Animal Nutrition. So my school is over paid for you could say because of my job currently holding and my haritage. I dont need all that money because my dad makes well into the 6 figures. (a non graduate of a college and came here from Mexico. No he is not illegal and he does not work with illegals haha) My father is an Senior Electrical Engineer for PG&E.
Don't Tread On Me!
 
AirWillie6475
Posts: 2372
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Tue Aug 22, 2006 2:08 am

Quoting QXatFAT (Reply 20):
Well are you a minority of any sort? Mexican-American? African-American? American Indian? These can help you get loads of money for college. I got a grip of money for college because I am Mexican-American and my father came here from Mexico. Do you also have ties in with a local company that has something similar to what you want to do with your degree? Here is what I mean, I have my money for college because of scholarships for my familys history (my father and my haritage) and my company I work for has offerd to pay for my college as well because it is in Animal Nutrition. So my school is over paid for you could say because of my job currently holding and my haritage. I dont need all that money because my dad makes well into the 6 figures. (a non graduate of a college and came here from Mexico. No he is not illegal and he does not work with illegals haha) My father is an Senior Electrical Engineer for PG&E.

I highly doubt it, it doesn't matter if you came from the Zulu nation, if your family makes more than a certain income I think around 30K or more you won't get a lot if anything at all. The only people that get significant amount, not f ew hundred dollars, is if you have no parents or one parent that makes less than a certain amount.

[Edited 2006-08-21 19:12:52]
 
vikkyvik
Posts: 11765
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Tue Aug 22, 2006 2:22 am

Quoting AirWillie6475 (Reply 21):
I highly doubt it, it doesn't matter if you came from the Zulu nation, if your family makes more than a certain income I think around 30K or more you won't get a lot if anything at all. The only people that get significant amount, not f ew hundred dollars, is if you have no parents or one parent that makes less than a certain amount.

Don't forget academic scholarships (or whatever they're called). I got offered $15,000+ per year to attend Case Western. And while I was a pretty good student, I wasn't great.

~Vik
I'm watching Jeopardy. The category is worst Madonna songs. "This one from 1987 is terrible".
 
AirWillie6475
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Tue Aug 22, 2006 2:30 am

Yea that's right. In fact most who go to those 30K per year schools only really pay for a fraction of that because of scholarships, although in general, this applies more to private colleges.
 
mdsh00
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Colleges and what to do or choose

Tue Aug 22, 2006 3:05 am

Quoting Vikkyvik (Reply 3):
If you have any specific questions, like why UCLA sucks, or even questions about USC, feel free to PM me or post them here.

As much as USC sucks balls (UCLA Grad) and brainwashes their students from day 1  Wink, he might be right as for the econ department. Ranking-wise, UCLA's Anderson School is right on par with USC's Marshall (but again that's more for MBA). USC graduates do get some good connections. If you are looking to work in California then I would stick with a California School. If money is a factor, you can't go wrong with a UC like Berkeley or UCLA.

See, USC Condoms, you don't always have to be biased.  Wink

Quoting Vikkyvik (Reply 3):
Ooo, and another thing, the eye candy at USC and UCLA is freaking awesome. You can entertain yourself for hours just walking around campus.

Very true. Though USC has more blondes and UCLA has more Asians.

Quoting Vikkyvik (Reply 3):
Too bad that for all the beauty, the intelligence is frequently absent  

Maybe for you guys.  Wink
"Look Lois, the two symbols of the Republican Party: an elephant, and a big fat white guy who is threatened by change."
 
vikkyvik
Posts: 11765
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Tue Aug 22, 2006 3:16 am

Quoting Mdsh00 (Reply 24):
As much as USC sucks balls (UCLA Grad) and brainwashes their students from day 1

I will be the first to admit that USC brainwashes the students. In fact, the school and its alumni practically brainwash kids from the day they're born. When you walk around campus on a gameday, you see tons of families with like 5-year-old kids all decked out in USC gear. I don't think I knew what a college was when I was 5! Kinda makes me sick....

Quoting Mdsh00 (Reply 24):
See, USC Condoms, you don't always have to be biased.

I humbly refer you to:

Quoting Vikkyvik (Reply 15):
Sure, USC is a good school, but it's not quite a GREAT school as of yet. UCLA is probably a bit better (ouch, that hurt), and will be FAR cheaper.



Quoting Mdsh00 (Reply 24):
Very true. Though USC has more blondes and UCLA has more Asians.

Indeed. University of Spoiled Children vs. University of Caucasians Lost among Asians.....

Quoting Mdsh00 (Reply 24):
Maybe for you guys.

 Sad 'Tis true. Honestly, I never met all that many folks from UCLA, so I can't really comment.

~Vik
I'm watching Jeopardy. The category is worst Madonna songs. "This one from 1987 is terrible".
 
VSlover
Posts: 1860
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Tue Aug 22, 2006 4:08 am

two things:

first, to all the others on here--have some of you considered that money may not be an issue? this leads to point two.

second, to come from a top tier school as an undergrad applying to grad school, it has been well documented that this will give you an upper hand. the grad school committee will see that you worked hard and did well all while attending a top notch college. i'm not saying they wouldnt consider you were you to attend a lesser school--it is just when they see someone who went to univ of chicago and did well in econ--well the univ of chicago did the original screening and intense leg work to admit you the first time and after you excelled, the grad school committee doesnt need to devote as much time to your app as it would otherwise.

shoot for the top, then figure out how to pay for it.
 
IFEMaster
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Tue Aug 22, 2006 4:25 am

Oxford University all the way, yeah! Just ask AirxLiban.
Delivering Anecdotes of Dubious Relevance Since 1978
 
Cory6188
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Colleges and what to do or choose

Tue Aug 22, 2006 12:48 pm

Quoting AirWillie6475 (Reply 23):
In fact most who go to those 30K per year schools only really pay for a fraction of that because of scholarships, although in general, this applies more to private colleges.

Not entirely true. I'm going to Dartmouth in the fall - 43K per year - and my parents aren't getting a penny. Now, granted, my dad's a dentist, so I can't exactly say that we're in any great state of financial need, but at really, really high end schools, they award financial aid based solely on your financial need, with no regard to scholarships or anything of the type.
 
comorin
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Colleges and what to do or choose

Tue Aug 22, 2006 1:08 pm

Quoting IFEMaster (Reply 27):
Oxford University all the way, yeah! Just ask AirxLiban.

Very, very few Americans get admitted to Oxford in the undergraduate program  Sad

In California, the top econ school is Berkeley (home of the binomial model) , while USC and UCLA are excellent ( my relatives taught there). As a California resident, I would use these as a baseline.

You should also think about NYU (no campus) and Columbia (Ivy), and of course Chicago and MIT.

However, as an undergraduate, any of these schools will give you a great education, so choose the one that sounds like fun to you - after all, its four years of your life. You can always hit the books when you get to grad school...

Good luck!
 
Dougloid
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Colleges and what to do or choose

Tue Aug 22, 2006 1:14 pm

Quoting ZOTAN (Reply 18):
Yea about 2-3 hours a night, depending on what classes I have the next day. I'm on a block schedule with 3 classes one day, and three classes the next. Classes are two hours long so we generally get more homework per night then a school with a normal schedule since we only meet 3 times a week. (I have all 6 on Mondays)

My busy nights are 2-3 hours, and my not so busy ones are only about 15 minutes. Busy being the days I have AP Chem, AP US History, and AP Art History.

I think youse guys just want to talk about how smart your stats say you are. There'll always be someone smarter and richer than you are.

So start thinking about the kind of man you want to become, and then go in that direction. You're the one who's got to live your life, not Mom, not Dad, and not your uncle Sid from Indianapolis. There's no shame in being a mason or a carpenter, sculptor, musician, priest, mechanic, plumber, or bookkeeper if that's what your heart tells you to do.

Do what you want to do, where you want to do it and do it without anyone's help, money, or intercession-then, you're beholden to no man.

I went through all that crap and failed miserably at it until I realized that what I was trying to do was impress my father and have him validate me. He wasn't impressed and didn't validate me, even after I worked my way through undergrad while I was working full time as an aircraft inspector, went to law school, and got a post graduate degree and never asked him for any money.

He was an MIT grad and the smartest person I ever met, hands down. After he died, my stepmother tells me "Well, he was always showing Volodya (my stepmother's grandson) how to do higher order mathematics" and the thought went through my head "He never even helped me with my fucking homework as a kid even when I was failing algebra."

At least, being an A&P mechanic and an attorney was my idea done on my dime-well, me and the taxpayers.

So do what you want to do, where you want to do it, and fuck what the rest of the world thinks-it's your life.

Now...maybe that's a little off topic so here's the advice. You could do a lot worse than the respective U's of Iowa, Minnesota or Michigan.
If you believe in coincidence, you haven't looked close enough-Joe Leaphorn
 
USAFHummer
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Tue Aug 22, 2006 1:18 pm

For the general data about schools that you are looking for, go to http://www.princetonreview.com and search away...

Greg
Chief A.net college football stadium self-pic guru
 
MAH4546
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Tue Aug 22, 2006 1:20 pm

I went to University of Chicago, as an economics major, so I would definitley say you can't go wrong with it, but I am biased. Feel free to contact me with questions.
a.
 
AirWillie6475
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Colleges and what to do or choose

Tue Aug 22, 2006 1:50 pm

Quoting Cory6188 (Reply 28):
Not entirely true. I'm going to Dartmouth in the fall - 43K per year - and my parents aren't getting a penny. Now, granted, my dad's a dentist, so I can't exactly say that we're in any great state of financial need, but at really, really high end schools, they award financial aid based solely on your financial need, with no regard to scholarships or anything of the type.

I'm not talking about financial aid.
 
MAH4546
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Colleges and what to do or choose

Wed Aug 23, 2006 5:09 am

If you plan on going to grad school after graduating, the name and prestige of your school takes on a lot less weight. Someone from a lesser known state school with an excellent transcript has just a good a shot at getting into a top grad school as an Ivy graduate with a great transcript. Plus, as grad schools like to diversify, you may arguably have a higher shot, because a grad school isn't going to take a dozen people from one school, and more people are likely to apply to top schools from top undergrad institutions.

However, if you want to get a job after graduation, as sad as this sounds, name means everything. Getting a job at a top finance firm like JP Morgan Chase, Morgan Stanley, or Credit Suisse from a school like University of Chicago or Stanford is significant easier than from other schools. Seeing as you want an economics degree, I would assume you are at least considering the options of going into the finance industry post-graduation. Top firms recruit from only a select handful of schools - namely Stanford, University of Pennsylvannia, University of Chicago, Harvard, MIT, and Princeton. Getting in from other schools - even a top school such as Emory - is much more difficult. To these firms, the college admissions process was the first part of the selection process, and they take strong trust in the colleges that canidates from these schools are the best qualified. A 3.2 GPA at the University of Chicago is a lot more likely to land you a top finance job than a 3.9 GPA at University of Florida.

Though, like I said, if you want to go to grad school, the name's prestige is significantly less important.
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zotan
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Wed Aug 23, 2006 6:12 am

Quoting Dougloid (Reply 30):

I'm just trying to show off how smart I am? How does that have anything do with asking for advice on college? I was just asking what your guys thoughts were based on my GPA and course load.

Sure, I should follow my heart but at the same time I shouldn't close any doors while im going in that direction. I work my ass off now, and rewards will come later. I'm not gonna sit back and be lazy all throughout highschool just because a career I'm interested in now doesn't require a college degree.

That said though, I really do want to get into economics. I find the whole thing fascinating. I bought an econ textbook and read the thing from front to back just because Im so fascinated by the whole thing.
 
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Coal
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Wed Aug 23, 2006 6:13 am

Quoting MAH4546 (Reply 34):
If you plan on going to grad school after graduating, the name and prestige of your school takes on a lot less weight. Someone from a lesser known state school with an excellent transcript has just a good a shot at getting into a top grad school as an Ivy graduate with a great transcript. Plus, as grad schools like to diversify, you may arguably have a higher shot, because a grad school isn't going to take a dozen people from one school, and more people are likely to apply to top schools from top undergrad institutions.

Though, like I said, if you want to go to grad school, the name's prestige is significantly less important.

Ummm I both agree and disagree. Most of what you said is very true, but there is one key piece of the puzzle you left out: Work experience. If you plan on working a few years between your undergrad and graduate degree (ie. MBA) then it is imperative that you obtain at least one internship.

I graduated from a State university with a not so great GPA (above 3.0, though!) in Applied Economics. However, through my connections I ended up working directly for the CEO of a coal marketing firm, for two summers straights. Aside from the great experience ( F/C class flights, 5* hotels), this gave me a lot of connections in the energy business. Next year I will start working with the world's largets mining company on the other side of the world.

One more story following the philosophy of working b/w degrees: Guy I met at a bar had a top GPA from the same State school as me. Through connections, he landed an internship at JP Morgan. That, plus a good GMAT score got him into Columbia's GSB.

In any case, maybe I'll see you at U of C some time in the future. As an "Economist", that is my dream school as well.

Coal
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MAH4546
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Wed Aug 23, 2006 6:29 am

Quoting Coal (Reply 36):
If you plan on working a few years between your undergrad and graduate degree (ie. MBA) then it is imperative that you obtain at least one internship.

From most schools, indeed. It gives you the "in", because many firms do not bother recruiting directly from all but the top schools. However, from schools where firms recruit directly, it helps, but it is not at all imperative. In fact, JP Morgan and Morgan Stanley, among others, push very hard at the University of Chicago to hire, especially into their Investment Banking divisions, people with non-finance backgrounds that show an interest in the finance industry. This is mainly because the University of Chicago is a rarity among major universities in that it does not offer any career-focus majors. You can't major in engineering, pre-med, or business for example. It is both an advantage and a disadvantage: the advantage is that it means, for a job, you aren't competing against hard-core finance or marketing majors. The disadvantage is that you have to take the initivative to immerse yourself in the finance world (simple as reading the WSJ and following some stocks) and teach yourself the basics. Firms love this, however, because finance suddenly becomes an actual interest/hobby, rather than something you know about because it is your major.
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Wed Aug 23, 2006 7:20 am

Quoting MAH4546 (Reply 37):
From most schools, indeed. It gives you the "in", because many firms do not bother recruiting directly from all but the top schools. However, from schools where firms recruit directly, it helps, but it is not at all imperative. In fact, JP Morgan and Morgan Stanley, among others, push very hard at the University of Chicago to hire, especially into their Investment Banking divisions, people with non-finance backgrounds that show an interest in the finance industry. This is mainly because the University of Chicago is a rarity among major universities in that it does not offer any career-focus majors. You can't major in engineering, pre-med, or business for example. It is both an advantage and a disadvantage: the advantage is that it means, for a job, you aren't competing against hard-core finance or marketing majors. The disadvantage is that you have to take the initivative to immerse yourself in the finance world (simple as reading the WSJ and following some stocks) and teach yourself the basics. Firms love this, however, because finance suddenly becomes an actual interest/hobby, rather than something you know about because it is your major.

Mmmm, quite interesting, to say the least. I assume you're referring to an undergrad degree?

In any case, I decided to follow the "go to a State school+get good grades+get a high score on the GMAT+get hired by a Blue Chip and then go to a top Bschool" approach. I'm only half way, I hope it turns out ok.

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Wed Aug 23, 2006 7:36 am

i must say that as someone who went to an ivy that it really was a piece of cake getting an internship at morgan stanley, then after school being hired by jpmc and ssb.

i didnt even think i wanted to do banking, i only applied because i wanted to live in nyc for the summer...but my grades and interviews were a piece of cake and voila, i had the job.

do i think it had more to do with coming from an ivy known to turn out consultants and ibankers? absolutely.

do i think i could have acheived the same having come from some other school? sure. i know i wouldnt have had all the banks on campus all the time to see me or fly me down to nyc for interviews and my grades would have probably needed to be far better--but of course it is possible.
 
MAH4546
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Wed Aug 23, 2006 8:42 am

Quoting Coal (Reply 38):
Mmmm, quite interesting, to say the least. I assume you're referring to an undergrad degree?

In any case, I decided to follow the "go to a State school+get good grades+get a high score on the GMAT+get hired by a Blue Chip and then go to a top Bschool" approach. I'm only half way, I hope it turns out ok.

I am speaking from an undergrad degree. I'm not at all saying it is impossible to have a successful start to your career from a non-top school. I am saying it is far, far easier.

Morgan Stanley, for example, sends high ranking executives to the University of Chicago to recruit, and in the month of August they have already thrown three open invitation luncheons exclusively for University of Chicago students, with a fourth on Friday. They also have an employee in HR that is exclusively in charge of recruiting from the University of Chicago. Also at uChicago, JPMorgan Chase and Goldman Sachs sponsor a three-day recruitment "boot camp" to prep students for interviews before fall recruiting officially starts. Other top schools have similar benefits that most do not. It makes the process incredibly easy, and almost guarantees anybody that wants a finance job from a school like uChicago to get one, pending, of course, a decent GPA (at uChicago, finance firms consider 3.0+ good due to the fact they have no grade inflation or curving; other schools they look for higher), strong resume, and a good interview skills.

At other schools, it is entirely possible to get a job just as good, if not better, than a uChicago/Harvard/UPenn/etc. graduate, it just requires a lot more work and determination to get it, because you aren't served the hardest part - networking to get the interview - on a platter.
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texan
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Wed Aug 23, 2006 9:23 am

Quoting Monorail (Reply 8):
If you're planning on going to graduate school you should give a lot more consideration to less expensive public schools.

I agree with Monrail here. There are many excellent state schools with solid econ programs. Study your butt off there and try for Chicago or one of the other top schools for grad school. Just my opinion, but it'd save you some money and you'd still be receiving an excellent education but at a much cheaper price.

Whatever you decide, however, absolute best of luck to you. Just remember that the first micro and macro econ courses are not going to be anywhere close to representative of what the rest of the classes will be like  Silly

You have a lot of top schools on the list but make sure you have at least one, preferably two or more state schools on the list for backup purposes. I really didn't want to go to Texas Tech (and thankfully didn't have to live in Lubbock for 4 years), but I knew it was there just in case I couldn't receive big enough scholarships to the other schools.

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Wed Aug 23, 2006 9:24 am

Quoting MAH4546 (Reply 40):
At other schools, it is entirely possible to get a job just as good, if not better, than a uChicago/Harvard/UPenn/etc. graduate, it just requires a lot more work and determination to get it, because you aren't served the hardest part - networking to get the interview - on a platter.

 checkmark 

Another key point, and maybe a pretty obvious one, is that it also depends on the personality. I have an acquaintance that got his MBA from UChicago and went on numerous interviews with the major Ibanks. Never got beyond the first interview with any of the majors and ended up working for a small hedge fund. Of course, not a bad one either!

Coal
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zotan
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Wed Aug 23, 2006 10:15 am

For my backup school...

There is some deal between my district and SDSU that as long as I get a 3.0 GPA and take certain classes, I'm automatically admitted to SDSU. This will be my ultimate backup school. Chances are I'll probably apply to some of the less competitive UC's as backup schools also.
 
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Wed Aug 23, 2006 10:26 am

Check out the edition of Newsweek with "Terror Now"on the cover
Lots of good info for anyone thinking of college...
TPAnx
I read the news today..oh boy
 
MAH4546
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Wed Aug 23, 2006 10:33 am

Quoting Coal (Reply 42):

Another key point, and maybe a pretty obvious one, is that it also depends on the personality. I have an acquaintance that got his MBA from UChicago and went on numerous interviews with the major Ibanks. Never got beyond the first interview with any of the majors and ended up working for a small hedge fund. Of course, not a bad one either!

Definitley, especially for a S&T job. Good scores, resumes, and a going to a good school help get you an interview. They don't help you get to the second round, that is all personality and composure.
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Wed Aug 23, 2006 11:20 am

U of Chicago was just voted as the "best undergraduate experience" by the Princeton Review...

you have plenty of opportunities to have an amazing time there...right in the middle of one of the greatest cities in the world, with hundreds of exciting cultural, historical and social opportunities at your fingertips. It is also an extremely diverse campus and faculty; it is likely that you will have an experience unlike that of millions upon millions of undergrads in this country.

If you have the grades and the motivation, there is no option.
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sw733
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Wed Aug 23, 2006 11:46 am

Quoting ZOTAN (Reply 43):
automatically admitted to SDSU. This will be my ultimate backup school

Hell of a "ultimate" back up school...you should consider yourself very very lucky
 
zotan
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Wed Aug 23, 2006 12:28 pm

Quoting Planespotting (Reply 46):
If you have the grades and the motivation, there is no option.

Number 2 is definately true for me. I hope number 1 holds true also.

Quoting SW733 (Reply 47):
Hell of a "ultimate" back up school...you should consider yourself very very lucky

Yup. I'm very lucky with this one. The average GPA admitted to SDSU is now around 3.7-3.8. All I need is a 3.0.

Another question ... would holding a PPL help my chances of getting into college?

[Edited 2006-08-23 05:29:10]
 
Dougloid
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Colleges and what to do or choose

Wed Aug 23, 2006 12:40 pm

Quoting ZOTAN (Reply 35):
Quoting Dougloid (Reply 30):


I'm just trying to show off how smart I am? How does that have anything do with asking for advice on college? I was just asking what your guys thoughts were based on my GPA and course load.

Sure, I should follow my heart but at the same time I shouldn't close any doors while im going in that direction. I work my ass off now, and rewards will come later. I'm not gonna sit back and be lazy all throughout highschool just because a career I'm interested in now doesn't require a college degree.

Of course you're trying to show off how smart you are. You're fishing for validation and by the looks of it you've landed some real lunkers. You know all about how the schools are ranked, which ones are good, which ones are 'backup material' you've probably looked at the USN&WR rankings, Princeton Review, til you're blue in the face...do you think you're fooling anyone?

You're not looking for advice, you want some person to say "Jeezis Christ! You're the second coming of Milton fucking Friedman! Posner better retire! New sheriff in town!"

Consider it said. I'm thoroughly impressed, Harvey Cheyne.
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