Friday, March 02, 2007

Where To Go...

It is college choosing season. The students, after having made their applications and waiting patiently for an answer from their desired schools, have now, if they have been accepted the task of choosing themselves amongst the schools that have admitted them. The last couple of weeks, students have been appearing in our classes listening on lectures, observing the students and professors, and trying to make the decision if we are where they want to start their legal careers. Pretty exciting.

My wife’s cousin is currently trying to decide between U of Washington and U of Idaho for an undergraduate education. My wife’s sister is a UW grad, and both my wife and I are UIdaho grads, so we were trying to help him out with his decision. Of course, we supported going to the U of I. My wife and I had a great experience; we had fun, we made friends, and we both were able to get great jobs with our degrees, but we told him that if he wanted to live in Washington that the UW would get him into a bigger alumni circle and if he wants to go into a research field UW research really can't be beat. My sister-in-law, while being positive about the UW, basically told him she thought that the U of I would be a better choice for him. For her, she found the UW a little impersonal; it’s big and not exactly a ‘cozy college experience”. I heard a similar sentiment from another UW grad I used to work with; he sometimes wished he had attended WWU instead. It may just have been the business school that both of these UW grads went to and not the whole university, but both of them seemed to have loved the fact that they went to the UW but weren’t fond of going to the UW, if that makes sense.

I look forward to helping my kids pick out a university one day. I didn’t, in truth, have much choice. Well, at least, I didn’t know I had much choice. As a first generation college student, I didn’t know that it was possible to attend a school that you couldn't pay for out of your wallet, I didn't know anything about loans and such, and my parent were never in a financial place to "send" me to school. As a result, I limited my choices to Idaho (which is cheap for an in state student) and U of Montana (where I might have been able to get a track scholarship). Luckily, my choice worked out and I landed at a great school.


Phil said...

My kids can go to any college they want, but I will definitely guide them to smaller schools because I know it's a better experience. I've heard from too many people who said they felt lost on the big impersonal campuses.

I didn't have much choice either... I had to stay close to home for financial reasons, so ended up at a commuter school in California. But when I was looking at grad school I made an easy decision to return to the University of Idaho, where my mom, dad, grandparents, cousins, etc, all went to school. It's a choice I do not regret.

Matt said...

I second that, I don't regret Idaho at all; however, I won't force my kids (if I have them) to go there if they don't want, but if they do I'll be extremely pleased.