Should You Study Science or Engineering at a Private College?


As an educator at a leading private university, of course I think it’s smart to consider a private college or university for your undergraduate experience, but here is why:

• Private institutions offer dynamic interdisciplinary collaborations, excellence in teaching, dedicated mentors, and student selectivity. You can also take a hands-on approach to your scientific and technical interests through unparalleled research opportunities.

• Private colleges and universities focus on undergraduate education. We seek special, well-qualified students who can contribute to classroom and lab efforts and who can inspire others to work hard, intelligently, and creatively. We are committed to creating diversity in our student populations and a degree of competitiveness that will encourage you to strive for—and reach—your goals.

Consider these advantages

Research and teaching together. Research and education don’t compete with each other at private colleges and universities. In fact, research faculty gravitate to private institutions because they want to teach undergraduate students and do cutting-edge research.

Student-faculty involvement. The top 25 colleges in the country are nearly equally balanced between private and public, and all have excellent faculty. But faculty at private institutions are more intensely involved with their students. The student-faculty ratio is more favorable at private schools, and class sizes are generally smaller.

Course selection. Many private institutions allow you to create self-defined majors or combine existing majors and minors in creative, contemporary, and exciting ways that underscore our interdisciplinary approach to undergraduate education.

Springboard to a strong future

Private colleges provide a supportive atmosphere of guidance through mentors, advisors, and career counselors. And beyond equipping you with the usual college survival skills set, advising is a commitment to you and your growth, even well after you’ve earned your degree. This commitment—and access to advisors, deans, and faculty mentors—sets us apart from most public institutions.

Private institutions are leaders in taking you to the level that defines you as a professional in your chosen field of science, engineering, or technology. When you combine that preparation with the excellent network of alumni and friends plus contacts with employers, you will be another step ahead in the years to come as well.

These are all parts of the lifetime education process that begins the day you choose a private college or university for science or engineering.

What’s your next step? I recommend you settle down and read the articles in this magazine. Each one has been chosen to help you understand how private colleges and universities can provide you with the kind of education that’s exactly right for you.


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