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Local vs. Ivy League

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One thing that constantly worries me is about which university I should apply to. Would it be better to go to somewhere local-- say the University of Utah and get lots of credit for what I am doing in high school. With all the AP and IB that I'm doing, I should transfer about 80 credit hours if I were to apply to the University of Utah. This would eliminate maybe 2 years of university and let me work straight on my major.

Or would it be better to apply and get into somewhere like MIT or CalTech where I'd have to do more years, but maybe get more out of the experience? I met with some admissions officers from MIT, Yale, and Brown and they didn't really say much about an IB diploma holder other than "It tells us you can handle a rigorous work load."

...So what should I do? Go local and get it done quickly, or go somewhere more respected and spend more time?

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What are you interested in majoring in? If Caltech or MIT has a better program than U of Utah, then it might be worth it to attend one of those universities.

Factors to consider:

Caltech/MIT

You're going to be away from home. Experience

Cost much more.

An amazing alumni network. Better prospective job-wise if the program at the school is worth its salt.

The chance to get lost in the crowd/lose focus/always stay second best even trying your hardest

U of Utah

I'm thinking by local you mean you might just commute? If so, you dont' have to cook/clean/do laundry/deal with the stress of living in a dorm

Finishing early. If this uni has a good program in what you're interested in, you can get an internship and be well on your way early! All the baby boomers who are retiring are leaving gaps in the job market, so you can get a one-up, possibly?

Better chance of standing out when the competition isn't as bad.

If I was going to be able to do undergrad in 2 years, I'd jump on that! But then, I'm not so I can't be certain. Transferring into Caltech or MIT is harder, I presume. Hmm

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One thing that constantly worries me is about which university I should apply to. Would it be better to go to somewhere local-- say the University of Utah and get lots of credit for what I am doing in high school. With all the AP and IB that I'm doing, I should transfer about 80 credit hours if I were to apply to the University of Utah. This would eliminate maybe 2 years of university and let me work straight on my major. Ivy league universities also give credit for 5 in AP or 7 in IB HL subjects. If you did a lot in high school, you can finish an ivy league university in 3 years. Also MIT and Caltech are not Ivy League. And I know for MIT they don't give you credits because they think their courses are much harder than what you did in high school - even the intro ones.

Or would it be better to apply and get into somewhere like MIT or CalTech where I'd have to do more years, but maybe get more out of the experience? I met with some admissions officers from MIT, Yale, and Brown and they didn't really say much about an IB diploma holder other than "It tells us you can handle a rigorous work load."

...So what should I do? Go local and get it done quickly, or go somewhere more respected and spend more time? MIT and Caltech are much more respected than the University of Utah - unless you are planning to work in Utah. As sweetandsimple said, other things to consider would be the cost and your level of independence and also where do you want to work in the future.

Edited by Victor L

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