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Archive for the tag “Big 10 School”

Indiana University

INDIANA UNIVERSITY (visited 9/17/14)

~IU students in treeFor a large state/Big 10 School, IU is wonderfully landscaped and attractive. There’s a stream through campus, lots of trees, and even 2 cemeteries (the university can’t move them because of purchase conditions of the property). Near the chem building is the Dunn Family Sweetheart Tree, named for the family who had sold the university the land for that part of campus. One stipulation they made during the sale was that this tree had to remain on campus. The new chem. building is built around the tree. The 2nd stipulation was that for every tree cut down, the university has to replace it with 1 more, but they went one better and replaces every lost tree with 2 more.

~IU class changeThe main part of campus was swarming with students moving between classes. During the student panel, someone asked the students what it was like getting around campus for the first couple days and how they avoided getting lost. One student said that there are “IU Guides” – upperclassmen — who are posted around campus for the first couple days to help people. There’s also a mobile app. “I could look like I’m texting instead of a lost freshman,” said another student. There are also buses that circulate every 7-10 minutes which helps get them where they need to go.

With 4,000 classes each semester, students can’t possibly be bored. Average classes have 33 students, and only 7% of classes have more than 100. The largest lecture hall holds 420 students. “It’s the smallest largest lecture hall in the Big 10!” said the tour guide. Her largest class was close to that number. Despite the size of campus, professors make sure the students get hands-on experience. This is not the place for students who don’t like group work.

~IU arts

IU Art Building

Some academic information to note:

  • The Kelley Business School, ranked the #7 Business program in the nation, has about 5000 undergraduates. The program is designed for students to explore options through a first-year 12-credit Integrative Core to help them choose from the 12 programs including: Professional Sales, Economic Consulting, Public Policy Analysis, Real Estate, and Supply Chain Management.
    • Co-majors include Law, Ethics and Decision-Making, Technology Management, and Sustainable Business.
    • There are several accelerated 4+1 Master’s programs (the +1 is from the Kelley Business School.)
  • The music program competes with Eastman and Julliard. Thy have a full opera company which performs at the Met. Students have to audition and submit materials by 12/1. There’s a pre-screening process in the popular areas such as violin, saxophone, voice etc.
  • There are more languages taught here than anywhere else in the country with a total of 70, 50 of which are taught on a regular basis.
  • Physical Sciences are some of the smallest majors (and tend to have the smallest classes).
  • Many majors offer direct admission, and 26% are directly admitted into the program of choice. Students need to indicate on the application that they want that major.

    ~IU chem window

    A Chemistry Building window carving.

  • Nursing and Social Work are not direct admits.
  • Students interested in theater or studio arts can apply for the BFA program (requires an audition or medium-specific portfolio) or a BA (no audition/portfolio).
  • The Chem building is shaped like the periodic table. The elements are carved under the windows with a few blank for future discoveries.

IU admitted 24,000 students from the 38,000 who applied last year. From that, they enrolled 7716 first-year students, the largest in history. About a third came from outside Indiana; 9% were international. Students had a 3.73 median GPA and 1216 average SAT. They admit on a rolling basis (answers take 4-6 weeks).

~IU flowers bldgNovember 1 is a hard deadline for scholarship consideration but students can submit test scores through January 15 to increase scholarship money. Students are automatically considered for many scholarships, but not all. Selective scholarships require an additional application. Students are notified via mail and email regarding the link to their personalized Selective Scholarship Application, used for Hutton Honors College, Cox Research Scholars Program, and more. A couple scholarships worth noting are:

  • The Dean’s scholarship is worth up to $8,000 and given to non-residents.
  • The Global Engagement Scholarship for incoming freshmen, up to $11,000.
  • The Wells Scholars Program requires a nomination from the applicant’s high school, due by 10/1. Nomination packets are mailed to eligible high schools in August. Students from non-nominating high schools should submit all required materials to the admissions office by 9/20

Students are invited to the Honors College with an SAT of 1450 or 34 ACT, and a 3.8+ GPA. Honors housing is available but not required.

~IU BikesStudents must live on campus for freshman year. They’re housed in “neighborhoods” with academic support advisors with offices right there. There is also themed housing as well as beautiful Greek Housing (about 18% of students are affiliated, but not necessarily living in Greek Houses). There are 730 clubs and organizations on campus, including an Ushering Club (which gets them into some of the 1100+ music and theater productions for free). There’s a now-defunct Leaf Raking Club. Several students from California

~IU fountain 1

The infamous fountain, missing one of the statues

thought it sounded like fun; “that lasted about 15 minutes,” said the tour guide. One of the favorite activities is “Little 500,” a bike race modelled after the Indy 500. Students like going into town for food; Bloomington has the 2nd highest density of ethnic restaurants per capita after NYC. “It’s a tough life when you have to choose between Ethiopian restaurants”

Not surprisingly, sports are huge here. “We bleed Crimson . . . which isn’t so impressive come to think of it,” said one student on the panel. When IU last won the NCAA, the Arts Plaza got flooded during the celebration. The fish from the fountain were taken (“They weigh about a ton each. I don’t know how that happened,” said the tour guide. Although 4 were found (one of which was on a roof!), the 5th fish is still missing. There are several legends surrounding this: one says that it won’t be brought back until Bobby Knight apologizes, “and that’s not gonna happen!” Another says it’s gone until IU wins again.

© 2014

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Rutgers University – New Brunswick

RUTGERS UNIVERSITY – New Brunswick (visited 7/19/13)

Rutgers 3I heard stories from former Rutgers students that scheduling classes with enough time in between was a nightmare and that they needed to ride buses to class because of the size of campus. I’ve seen state universities with enough students to populate small cities but never one that had spread out over such a large expanse, so I was curious – and I wondered how they kept attracting students when it was so difficult to get around. Having seen it now, I get it. Students get around easily on the fleet of 60 buses that run every 5 minutes, and the university has made sure not only that scheduling works, but that students have a variety of options to suit all sorts of needs and interests. Being a Rutgers student means having access to many campuses in one.

Rutgers 2

Campus Train Station

Campus Train Station

The New Brunswick campus (Rutger’s flagship) is unusual in that they don’t have a single contiguous campus. Instead, they have five campuses with distinct feels. Each has residence halls, libraries, and recreational facilities, but students can take classes, eat, study, or work out on any campus. The Busch Campus has the stadium and lots of recreation facilities in addition to the Engineering department, most of the sciences, computer science, half of psychology, and math. The Douglass Campus was originally the NJ College for Women, and remains a residential college for women. It looks like a traditional college campus with trees and lots of green open space. Special programs for leadership development are housed here. The Cook and Douglass Campuses are contiguous; the Cook campus is the original land-grant portion of campus, and many of the Applied Science fields (biotechnology, food science, meteorology, pre-vet) are still here as well as a farm so students have experience with animals. The business and art departments are also here. The College Avenue Campus is the smallest campus and houses English, history, languages, economics, and other similar departments. The Livingston Campus is seeing quite a bit of new construction with a collection of apartment buildings; the first floor of the buildings house retail establishments such as a movie theater, a 24-hour diner, Starbucks, a Mexican restaurant, and more. The student housing above this are mostly singles. The original site of the school, Queens Campus, is not considered one of the 5 campuses because there are no classes held there anymore. Instead, there are offices, a museum, and the chapel. There are two satellite campuses: the Newark campus is 15 miles from NYC, and the Camden campus is across the river from Philadelphia.

Rutgers was founded in 1766, making it the ninth oldest university in the country (the second public university after William and Mary). Rutgers 1They got the land-grant in the mid-1800s and were officially named the State University in the mid-1900s. Currently, there are about 32,000 undergraduates (and about another 10,000 in the graduate and medical schools) at New Brunswick, representing all US states and 125 countries (with 120 languages spoken). However, they’re looking to lower freshman enrollment at New Brunswick and will increase at the other two campuses to compensate. There are 50 residence halls (including apartments) but more will be added with the $1 billion dollar expansion that the university is undertaking, which will include new dorms (including honors), academic buildings, new nursing facilities, and other programs.

New dorms with retail on the first floor

New dorms with retail on the first floor

One of the coolest things I learned during the information session was that Rutgers was instrumental in developing the first underwater self-propelled tube across the Atlantic from NJ to Spain. The tube was controlled form Rutgers, and the ship that accompanied it (called Scarlett because of Rutger’s colors) was manned by students and staff from the university. There were even freshman on the team, including English majors who accompanied a Professor who was a documentarian; some were so excited they switched to oceanography as a major! Rutgers ranks as 21st in the nation in sponsored research.

Here are some cool facts about Rutgers that the tour guides shared with us on our tour:Rutgers athletics

  • They have the largest indoor practice football “bubble” in the country, and the Giants and the Jets practice there.
  • Their intramural sports include a 5’5” and under basketball league, quidditch, and underwater basketweaving.
  • Their swimming pool has a hydraulic floor to control its depths.
  • Their Math building is shaped like Pi
  • Their Physics building looks like a cupcake with a steep underground lecture hall.
  • There are over a hundred study abroad experiences in 40 countries.
  • Some of the off-campus housing is closer to the bus-stops on campus than several of the dorms.
  • 3 different police patrols cover campus.
  • Nabisco funded their Food Science Building.
  • The River Dorms are Living Learning Communities with classrooms in the basement
  • They have a well-renowned Marine and Coastal Sciences program.
  • One-credit Freshmen Interest Groups led by upperclassmen are offered during the first semester. Some of the more unusual ones are: “Yankee Stadium: Why Did the Stadium Cross The Road?” “Harry Potter and Behavioral Genetics,” and “Graphic Novels.”

Supply Chain Management and Business Analytics Information Tech are the newest majors from over 100 to choose from. Departments are organized into schools: First year students can apply to Nursing, Pharmacy, Arts, Business, Arts & Sciences (the largest division), Engineering, or Environmental and Biological sciences. Nursing is a direct admit program, but it’s not required that they start the first year. Many students start in Arts & Sciences, take the first-year classes, and do a school-to-school transfer. Engineering students take their intro classes in A&S and then begin the Engineering program. First year engineering students have a special residential hall; students who live there have a .5 higher GPA than those who don’t. There’s a “We’re in this together” attitude. The students are told, “Look to the left; look to the right. It’s YOUR responsibility to make sure you’re all here next year.” Materials Engineering: They are working on making bridges out of used milk containers! The Arts school is a conservatory and will earn a BFA except for the music majors who have the choice of getting a BA through A&S. The theater students study abroad at the Globe Theater. Pharmacy is a 0-6 degree; they enter right out of high school and will get a DPharm (required to be a practicing pharmacist) in 6 years. This is highly competitive with 3800 applicants for 220 spots. In Business, juniors and seniors can apply to major in Planning and Public Policy, Management and Labor relations, or Communication and Info if they’d like.

Rutgers has Priority application dates, but not Early Action or Decision. December 1 is a priority deadline and is the last date that applicants will be considered for scholarships. Some of the more competitive schools will also be closed after that. After 12/1, the online application will only show what programs are still open. Students apply to up to 3 schools: students can rank their top three options (and actually could get accepted to all three). Students have to self-report their own grades; they only turn in a transcript after they deposit (the final end-of-year transcript with the graduation date is the best). They only had to rescind 2 acceptances last year because students misrepresented their grades. They will superscore both SAT and ACT. No TOEFL is needed if the international student graduates from an English-speaking school, but it can help if the CR section is low. Currently 14% of the school is from out-of-state; they’d like to get that up to 25% (which is still under the other Big Ten schools).

© 2013

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