New England Institute of Technology (visited 4/29/19)
If a student wants hands-on, experiential, practical education, this school is worth looking at.
NEIT is an interesting place that seems to have sprung suddenly on the college scene in the last decade or so. It’s still very much a regionally known place mostly because it had been a commuter school for so long. However, with the recent addition of a 400-bed dorm (with another one planned to be completed within the next couple years), NEIT is expanding its reach beyond the local and is becoming well known in the New England region. They are now trying to get their name out there beyond the immediate area.
Right now, I’d hesitate a bit before sending a student from too far away simply because there’s not much happening on the weekends. “It’s pretty quiet,” said one of the students. However, they’re really happy here. “You can definitely find things to do.” Providence is only about 15 minutes away with a lively college scene. Boston is about an hour and NYC is about 3 hours on the train which runs through the area. I think once the 2nd dorm goes up and the residential population grows with that, this will become a more vibrant campus and they’ll continue to attract more students who will want to stick around on the weekends.
The main campus is located in East Greenwich. Campus is new (they moved to this location in the early 2000s) and has up-to-date technology for the students. There are 2 satellite campuses in Warwick and Providence. This one houses the Automotive center; students can get degrees in Auto Technology (Regular or High Performance), Auto body, Collision Repair, and even Marine Technology!
They offer an extensive array of Associate’s degrees, many of which lead into a Bachelor’s if students want to continue on. Students who want to go directly into a trade (think electrical, plumbing, HVAC) and health sciences (PT or OT assistant, Respiratory Care, Paramedic, Vet Tech, etc) will be well trained and usually get jobs before graduation. Nursing is also offered as an AA degree, but they recommend staying for the BSN to be more marketable/hirable. Some of their more unusual Bachelor’s degrees include Construction Management, Vet Practice Management, Game Development & Simulation Programming, and Cybersecurity and Network Engineering.
This is a great choice for students who are looking for engineering technology, not engineering itself. In addition to the more typical engineering fields (civil, mechanical, etc), they also offer Software, Electrical, and Architectural Building Engineering Tech. The students we talked to are very happy in their classes; one student at my lunch table was in the engineering tech program and said that he had a lot of friends at URI’s engineering. “They’re getting much more of the theory. We’re getting the actual knowledge of how to run things. When they get hired, they often don’t know how to run the machines. We do.”
Classes are held on the quarter system, and many students are able to finish an AA degree in 18 months by taking classes year-round. Bachelor’s can be finished in 3 years. However, their 6-year graduation rate hovers in the mid-50% range which isn’t spectacular but still slightly above the national average. However, job placements out of here tend to be very high for those who do finish.