Class of '07 Schools to look at

Well to avoid having college students fill up the other thread I am going to start this one, If you are a college student or graduate and would like to help out the '07 kids then post in here about your school and/or other schools you applied too.

I guess I will start with RPI. Rensselaer is one of the top engineering programs in the country, I believe it is ranked 19th and has been rising every year. It differs from other top programs in one major way, acceptance rate, because relatively few people know much about the school there are usually less applications submitted here than at other schools, this doesn’t mean that the students aren’t as smart, it is just that usually only students who are able to get in apply. RPI has a FIRST team (1493) that works on Campus and also is involved to a much less extent with other teams in the area. Rensselaer is very well rounded, rather than just being an engineering school it has fantastic science departments. If you have any questions feel free to contact me, if you would like to see the campus and can’t make it to orientation or can make it but would like a more personal tour let me know and I will show you what we have to offer.


I work at Saint Joseph College, West Hartford, CT. It is a private women’s college just outside of Hartford, CT (our night/weekend program and graduate school are coed). We are a liberal arts institution with strong programs in nursing, education, special education, and a variety of other majors. If the idea of a large campus with lecture halls filled with students doesn’t appeal to you, consider visiting our campus and sitting in on some of our classes. Our faculty know our students by name and will encourage you to develop your potential. If you’d like a private tour just contact me., click on Prospective Students, Undergraduate to learn more.
Hartford is home to the awesome FRC UTC New England Regional; Connecticut boasts many FLL, FVC and FRC teams!

I will be entering Northwestern University in Evanston, IL this fall. Rated #14 of Universities in the country by US News, Northwestern is a very strong Engineering program and co-op and internship connections with many major companies (Ford mainly, and Motorola, others).

I. Location, Location, Location
This school is 30 minutes away from downtown Chicago on the shuttle. Easy to fly into, easy to get to, and just a generally awesome place to go to school. Chicago is a cultural explosion. Lots of food, an amazing music and cultural scene, etc. The campus itself is on the shore of Lake Michigan. It’s a Big 10 school, but a relatively smaller one: each of the years is about 2000 strong.

II. Academics
All-around very strong science school. I see a LOT of FIRST kids applying to MIT, RPI, Cornell, U Mich, Northeastern…but I don’t see that many applying here. If you aren’t into Engineering, the Sciences are very strong, and Biomedical & Chemical Engineering (two very good programs here) are the main reason I chose to apply. It’s also known for lots of dual-degree programs (Engineering & Law, Engineering & Music, etc) and an incredible pre-med preparation reputation.

There isn’t a FIRST team there that I know of. It is however maybe 30-45 minutes to the Midwest Regional, within a few hours of the Wisconsin Regional, and 3 hours north of Boilermaker. There are Chicago events if you choose to pursue them, but if you are a high school FIRSTer looking for a big city with opportunities for FIRST that you won’t feel sucked into, this is probably a good chance.

Feel free to email me with any questions you may have.

I’m more than halfway done with my education at the University of South Carolina. Why’d I pick USC*?

1) Money. As a South Carolina resident with decent high school grades, I qualified for the LIFE Scholarship ($5,000/year), and also succeeded in getting the University Scholars scholarship ($1,500/year). If you’re eligible for work-study, there’s opportunities out the wazoo around; if not, you find ways to cover your late-night Beezer’s sandwiches.

2) Majors. Much as everyone around here thinks that I’m an engineering major, I’m not. I started as elementary education, then realized that wasn’t for me. Ultimately, I had it down to either business or engineering as the new major, and it became rather obvious by that point (midway through my second semester) that most of my freshman year would have been for naught in the latter college, so business it was. (Not that the Moore School of Business is a bad choice, mind you.)](

3) Geography. I admit it, I wanted to stay close to home. Home is about twenty or thirty minutes by car, which makes it easy when my building closes for breaks. (Not all of them close, mind you, Preston does.) Much as everyone bemoans parking around here, I’ve found that just about everything can be reached by foot or shuttle bus. By a combination of the two, I can reach three bookstores, the student pharmacy, more dining options than I can shake a stick at (including the aforementioned student favorite Beezer’s, which stays open until 3:00 or 4:00 in the morning), a grocery store, the state capitol, and a FIRST regional. You can’t get that just anywhere, y’know.

4) Robots. Back as a wee little freshman, I had a desire to keep with FIRST. Luckily, there are five active FRC teams (1293, 1336, 1398, 1618, 1959) within twenty or thirty minutes (depending on traffic) of campus by car, an FRC regional you can walk to, an FLL state tournament one block further, and an FVC Championship Tournament an hour away. And you won’t be the only one–aside from a mess of 1293ers I know, I’ve also crossed paths with folks from 11, 342, 343, 1102, and 1539. (The concept of a FIRST alumni group has been tossed around; I suppose I ought to look at the SG web site for that.)

Now, is USC the best spot for everybody? Probably not, especially if you’ve got to wear lots of orange. :wink: But they haven’t scared me off yet.

*Yes, I said USC. USC, then known as South Carolina College, was founded in 1801, beating That Other USC by a good 79 years.