campus encounters

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Archive for the tag “Accelerated master’s”

Johnson & Wales, Providence

Johnson and Wales, Providence (visited 4/29/19)

J&W sculptureThis is an amazing college for students wanting a solid education with hands-on components, students who want “to try new things, to succeed and even fail. We support them and help them transition.” Students start with their major on day one – but can work with their advisor to change. They can figure it out early if it isn’t the right fit. “This is the place to come if you want to learn and get a job. Students get hired.”

J&W chocolate lab

Chocolates lab class

J&W’s Providence campus is the flagship (with other campuses in Charlotte, Denver, and Miami). When students apply, they pick a campus but are accepted to all four. The school was founded by 2 women in 1914 before women were even allowed to vote – yet they started a major university as a business school to build opportunities for women and provide them with relevant skill sets in the work force. They still have strong business programs, including Equine Business Management (with Riding or Non-Riding options), Advertising & Marketing Communications, Fashion Merchandising & Retailing, and Restaurant/Food/Beverage Management.

J&W 2The Providence campus now offers 70 programs (majors vary a bit between campuses). Students are allowed to move between campuses, assuming their major is offered at the other location. The university offers Associates (Baking & Pastry or Culinary Arts) through Doctoral (Education) degrees. Students in the AS programs can roll into a related Bachelor’s program in the same or similar majors, including Food Service Management, Culinary Nutrition, Tourism & Hospitality Management, Dietetics & Applied Nutrition, or Food & Beverage Entrepreneurship.

J&W student centerThe university also continues to grow and try new things, as well. In the fall of 2019, 2 new majors are being implemented: Integrated Product Design and Comp Sci. In the fall of 2020, 4 more will begin: Sustainable Food System, Biomedical Science, Economics, and Create Your Own. They also offer accelerated Master’s Programs in areas like Addiction Counseling, Clinical Mental Health Counseling, Organizational Psychology, Data Analytics, Information Security/Assurance, MBA, Global Leadership & Sustainable Economic Development, and Sport Leadership.

J&W Harborside

The Harborside campus

Classes are capped at 40 (some are capped at a lower point because of the physical work space), but class size averages only 21. Faculty members are experts in their field, many of whom have worked in the industry before coming to campus. They can help with networking, internships, and jobs. J&W has cultivated relationships with multiple companies and has over 1000 internship sites. Students can start interning as early as sophomore year (but junior year is more common).

J&W 3Providence’s campus is split into two parts about 3 miles apart (less than 10 minutes depending on traffic), and students can live on either one regardless of where their classes are held. There is a separate equine center located about 25 minutes away (actually across state lines in Massachusetts!) with regular shuttles running up there.

J&W Downcity res quad

The residential quad on the Downcity Campus

Student parking is located on the Harborside campus because of space issues, and shuttles run regularly between the two sites. We had breakfast in large meeting room in a building that has a dining hall and a res hall. Some of the students have rooms that overlook the water! This campus also has the Cuisinart Center for Culinary Excellence. Their culinary program is absolutely phenomenal! All aspects of the trade are taught. For example, students take a mixology lab: they use colored water instead of actual alcohol (“it would get prohibitively expensive to keep dumping alcohol down the drain,” said our tour guide). For their final exam, they dim the lights and blare music to mimic the industry. They have to prepare 12 drinks in 12 minutes. There’s also restaurant on site that serves lunch and dinner to just over 60 people. Students in a sophomore-level class work the restaurant and rotate through all aspects of it to learn everything from table set-up to service to food prep. The dessert comes from the Baking & Pastry labs. Students rotate through all sorts of labs; materials and uniforms (collar colors indicate different programs and progression: the lighter the color, the further along a student is) are included in tuition. Students learn how to use everything and not waste things. They use cuttings as garnish, they’ll dry and grind up leftover vegetables for powers to flavor dishes, etc.

The Downcity campus takes up 6 city blocks; the same amenities are on that campus including a pretty residential quad. They even have a pet-friendly floor! There is a bit of commuter parking at this campus, but it tends to be pricey. Providence has great arts, music, and restaurant scenes. This is a great college town with several universities nearby (including Brown, RISD, and Providence College), so places cater to students. For example, there’s a nearby event center that sells tickets at 50% off 2 hours before showtime.

© 2019

Northeastern University

Northeastern University (visited 3/24/14)

NEU 2 While waiting to be taken to the info session, I chatted with a freshman Computer Science major from Brooklyn. He was wonderfully enthusiastic about Northeastern, saying he picked the school because “unlike the school across town that has a long street of ugly buildings,” Northeastern combines an urban campus with big green spaces. I didn’t have time to take the full tour and therefore couldn’t verify this; there were some grassy areas, but definitely not the large quads that people might associate with a traditional college campus.

NEU 1~NE sign and pathNormally, the info sessions are held in the beautiful new Welcome Center. However, they were throwing a dinner in that building for a Marine Biology professor who had been named as a Nobel Laureate. They moved us to a church that the university has converted to a large open stage space. There were over 100 people who fit in comfortably for the presentation. Unfortunately, it was a canned speech with very little originality from the rep, who also spoke so fast that we could barely understand what she was saying, and she moved through slides too quickly to take many notes. The good news is that much of the information was the type of stuff we could get from the website.

NEU 4NE 1Northeastern pushes their global, experiential education. They are looking for “students who are willing to engage the world and are willing to pursue their passions. We have energetic, creative, focused students. They have a fire in the belly” (according to the admissions video). The Co-op program is highly popular, and they spend a great deal of time talking about it. Students can spend 6 months completing a job placement at a company in their major area; companies such as HSBC, Vogue, Apple, Google, Patriots, White House, Hose, EMC, PWC, and Pixar regularly employ Northeastern students. This is not a guaranteed program and students do have to interview for the jobs, but they boast a 90% placement rate for students seeking co-ops. Those seeking to participate in this program complete a pre co-op class in the semester just before going in order to help prepare them for interviews, resume writing, job skills, etc. Co-ops can be done all over the world, but if they do one in Boston, they can still live on campus and only pay room and board to the university. No one ever pays tuition during their co-op, and in fact, they often get paid. The student I spoke to said that the Computer Science people often get paid up to $22 an hour. There are some places like DC, NY, and LA where Northeastern has some properties where students can live. More than 50% of students get a job offer from a previous co-op employer.


A T stop is located right on campus.

Northeastern is located on a residential campus in an urban environment. All first and second year students must live on campus, and Living-Learning Centers are an option for any interested student. They just built a new dorm, and housing is available for anyone who wants it. Boston is a great college town with 250,000 college students in the metro area. 16,000 of those are NEU undergraduates (5,000 more are full-time graduate and law students). They keep a 13:1 student-to-teacher ratio allowing for “lively discussion and debate” in the classroom. The average class size is 24; the freshman I talked to had classes ranging from 9 (Intro to Linguistics) to 70 (Computer Science 1). There are 140 majors and concentrations across 8 schools, making it easy to create a major, double major, and more. There’s a PlusOne Accelerated Master’s Program as well as a 3+3 Social Sciences and Humanities + Law degree, but it sounds like that’s only for people majoring in History, Sociology, and Philosophy. The school attracts big name faculty, including Michael Dukakis in the Political Science Department.

NE 2This year, they had a new record number of applications (49,700), and they admitted 32% of those. In addition to good grades, they’re looking for personal traits of adaptability, diversity, engagement, experiential learning, and global perspective. They judge these through letters of rec, activities, and essays. Placement in the Honors College was offered to the top 10% of admitted students.

© 2014

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