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The College Tour has begun

Old 01-25-2012, 04:54 PM
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Default The College Tour has begun

My son has 9 schools he wants to visit in the next 3 months. At least they are all on the east coast. Anyone else going thru this? Advice?
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Old 01-25-2012, 05:02 PM
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lots of scholarships/grants and go where they give him the most money. I just graduated, theres a 15 page thread on here about school loans and how much they suck, that I started
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Old 01-25-2012, 05:08 PM
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I wish i was going on a college tour.

Tell him to enjoy it and stay in as long as possible. Beats the hell out of working.
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Old 01-25-2012, 05:08 PM
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I'm probably too cynical, but think about your wedding. Think of the thousands you spent on it. Now think of what you could have done with half of that money, like invest it or put it towards a house.

College is the same way - you spend a crapload because everyone else does. Sit down with him, find out what he thinks he wants to do for a living, and find a marketable major that will support it. I've seen way too many political science majors who flip burgers after graduation.

Also, there are advantages to going to a state school in terms of cost. You get out of it what you put into it and for the most part, a hiring manager doesn't care if you graduated from Brown or a community college. Unless he's a Brown alumni.

Just try to keep things in perspective as he's looking at various colleges, and evaluate it like an investment - will an additional $100k of debt from an Ivy league school get him a better job?

It's not that I'm against education - my wife has her Master's, I took some classes towards my MBA before I had to stop due to time constraints, I'm currently back in school for a Master's in Information Assurance, and we're putting my 7 year old through private school.

On a good note, there is a high concentration of good schools in the north east, so try to find something that's far enough away so he feels like he's on his own, but close enough so he can drive home for a weekend.
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Old 01-25-2012, 05:09 PM
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Visited UF and USF last November with my son.
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Old 01-25-2012, 05:12 PM
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Yup, a mere 4 years ago. Applied to 14 schools, Visited 9 from south MD to upstate NY. Good times. My best advice, Enjoy it! My mom and I still laugh about our roadtrips to the schools.Try to visit every school. Explore the surrounding areas. A lot of the schools I looked at had some pretty shady areas directly around them, the directions on the school websites almost always takes you a route that avoids these areas. Have your son try to set up an overnight stay at the school. Most schools I applied to let me stay overnight and attend a few classes the next day. Really gives you a feel about how things work. Also have him set up an interview with the deal of admissions, memorize the resume, etc. I was accpeted to some schools I was convinced I was not going to get into. I think my interview had a lot to do with this.
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Old 01-25-2012, 05:20 PM
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Originally Posted by jobowker View Post

Also, there are advantages to going to a state school in terms of cost. You get out of it what you put into it and for the most part, a hiring manager doesn't care if you graduated from Brown or a community college. Unless he's a Brown alumni.

Just try to keep things in perspective as he's looking at various colleges, and evaluate it like an investment - will an additional $100k of debt from an Ivy league school get him a better job?
I hire professionals and there is a monumental difference between Brown and community college. I know you are using hyperbole to prove a point, but the quality of education is not equal everywhere. it does make a difference where you go.

plus the connections you make at better schools can be very important if you are in a business that requires referrals or you need connections to move up.
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Old 01-25-2012, 05:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Joe View Post
I wish i was going on a college tour.

Tell him to enjoy it and stay in as long as possible. Beats the hell out of working.


I'm getting whiplash from the college tour if you know what I mean?






Originally Posted by jobowker View Post
I'm probably too cynical, but think about your wedding. Think of the thousands you spent on it. Now think of what you could have done with half of that money, like invest it or put it towards a house.

College is the same way - you spend a crapload because everyone else does. Sit down with him, find out what he thinks he wants to do for a living, and find a marketable major that will support it. I've seen way too many political science majors who flip burgers after graduation.

Also, there are advantages to going to a state school in terms of cost. You get out of it what you put into it and for the most part, a hiring manager doesn't care if you graduated from Brown or a community college. Unless he's a Brown alumni.

Just try to keep things in perspective as he's looking at various colleges, and evaluate it like an investment - will an additional $100k of debt from an Ivy league school get him a better job?

It's not that I'm against education - my wife has her Master's, I took some classes towards my MBA before I had to stop due to time constraints, I'm currently back in school for a Master's in Information Assurance, and we're putting my 7 year old through private school.

On a good note, there is a high concentration of good schools in the north east, so try to find something that's far enough away so he feels like he's on his own, but close enough so he can drive home for a weekend.

Believe me when I say my son has hit shit together, its the COMPLETE opposite of me at that age. He's a junior, has had a GPA of 3.98 his last 3 years. Scored a 2240 out of the gate on his SAT's, he also took the subject test and is taking the ACT's this coming Saturday. Works at the local YMCA as a life guard and a swim instructor 12-15 hours a week and tutors 3 afternoons a week after school. He know's exactly what he wants to do. He wants to teach English and History, he loves them both. He freaking writes like you wouldn't believe. A few months ago the New York Times Magazine printed one of his short stories. His plan is college and then either Teach America or the Peace Corps for 2 years. His college goals are either Columbia or Vanderbilt but would not mind a school like Penn State. The pisser is money, he has a nice 529 plan. But nobody is knocking down doors to give him any scholarships (yet) His one friend who's parents are from China is being run down with offer's. The kid has a lower GPA and SAT score than my son. My wife and I decide long ago he would not graduate college with ANY debt.
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Old 01-25-2012, 05:40 PM
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4 years ago my daughter did her first year at Westchester (your neck of the woods) then transferred to U of MD.
Both my kids are completely finished school...bitter sweet for them. You know the real world.
Good luck with this chapter in his and your life.



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Old 01-25-2012, 05:43 PM
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Originally Posted by 240 LTS View Post
4 years ago my daughter did her first year at Westchester (your neck of the woods) then transferred to U of MD.
Both my kids are completely finished school...bitter sweet for them. You know the real world.
Good luck with this chapter in his and your life.



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Thanks Jeff

West Chester is too close for him, so he says. Its a good school for PE, they crank out lots of gym teachers
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Old 01-25-2012, 06:13 PM
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If he wants to teach high school then $50,000 per year is really not a wise fiscal decision. He would be better off at a state school and investing the difference.

If he wants to be a college professor then a top notch school may help with graduate school and his career down the road.

I visited a lot of schools with my son and he ended up picking a school that wasn't originally even on his list. When we visited I kept thinking to myself that this school would be perfect for my son, as we were leaving my son turned to me and said "this is where I want to go". I'm glad we took the time to "visit one more school".

It is crazy expensive but I couldn't let him miss this opportunity, after all the worked very hard for a lot of years just to be in the position to be qualified to be there.

Enjoy your time together!
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Old 01-25-2012, 07:49 PM
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I have done 2 college tours with my 2 of my boys and we are getting ready for the final one with my high school junior. My oldest 2 ended up at the same school, FSU, but I think this one will go somewhere else. Since the first 2 went to a state university, the costs were not too bad. I am not sure about son # 3 though. This one might be expensive.

Good luck and enjoy the tour.
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Old 01-25-2012, 08:00 PM
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Some people feel that a low cost good state school for undergraduate degree works, then go for the best when it comes to graduate school...

A high end ivy or close to ivy, the kid will get lots of extra help if needed and a lot of individual attention.
A state school, your just a number and lots fall between the cracks.
I guess it all depends on the kid....
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Old 01-25-2012, 08:05 PM
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3 kids 1 MD 2 PHD's best money I ever spent, even in this economy they all make 6 figures and are moving up.
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Old 01-25-2012, 08:09 PM
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I remember those days. I am finishing my last semester in college and I am loving and dreading the fact that the real world is coming. I chose a small school (St. Mikes) in Vermont and it has been absolutely invaluable. I can honestly say that I am ahead of many friends in the same grade, and even ones with better GPAs that me. I am fortunate to have a job offer out of school, and I cant wait to start a career. Tell you son to choose wisely. I did not attend the "best" school I got into because I felt I could not and would not ever be happy there, its all about happiness, because if you are miserable, you will have no drive, and do poorly. Good Luck to him!
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Old 01-25-2012, 08:25 PM
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[QUOTE=alacrity;4312462
plus the connections you make at better schools can be very important if you are in a business that requires referrals or you need connections to move up.[/QUOTE]

Truer words were never spoken. Tell him to go to the best school that recruiters recruit from in the area he wants to live. Every job I have now, I have because of people I've met both in school and through Beta Alpha Psi.
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Old 01-26-2012, 05:58 AM
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Thanks for your info and insight
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Old 01-26-2012, 06:33 AM
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I have twin sons who are high school freshmen. It's a little early but we will probably look at one or two schools this summer.

Technology has created this craze of applying to lots of schools. In my town it's not uncommon for students to apply to 12-15 schools. I think that's just silly and a waste of money. When I was in high school in the 1980s all the applications were done on a typewriter. I visited 4 schools, I applied to 4 schools, I got in to all 4 and decided on the least expensive.
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Old 01-26-2012, 06:53 AM
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When I was looking at schools myself, my dad and I drove from Fort Lauderdale up to New Hampshire and back again in nine days. We drove something like 4500 miles and saw 20ish schools. Insane in the membrane.
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Old 01-26-2012, 07:03 AM
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Originally Posted by gf View Post
I have twin sons who are high school freshmen. It's a little early but we will probably look at one or two schools this summer.

Technology has created this craze of applying to lots of schools. In my town it's not uncommon for students to apply to 12-15 schools. I think that's just silly and a waste of money. When I was in high school in the 1980s all the applications were done on a typewriter. I visited 4 schools, I applied to 4 schools, I got in to all 4 and decided on the least expensive.
I agree 100%. My son's friend starting looking at colleges when he was a sophomore. As of last week he has seen 14 colleges and has another dozen or so to go. My wife and I simple don't have that amount of time. I don't mind 9 or 10, a lot are fairly local and will be day trips. He'll narrow it down and apply to 3 or 4. He wants to be accepted by the fall
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