Students, Grads Explain Why They Chose Their Colleges

Read why these students or recent grads selected their respective colleges or universities.

Six students and recent grads share their advice for choosing the right school.

Six students and recent grads share their advice for choosing the right school.

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Why I Picked Drake University (Des Moines)

Haley Bosco, 2012 graduate I came for the liberal studies and stayed for the impeccable midnight breadsticks (a Des Moines tradition). Drake University not only provided an education that has enhanced me personally, politically, and professionally, but also offers a thriving social network and career opportunities.

We have significant student participation in the Iowa caucuses, meaningful professional development in every major, and strong community involvement in the nationally renowned Drake Relays track and field event. I found unrivaled comfort in the education program and recreational relief in my work with intramurals and the school newspaper. Drake offers a meaningful role for each student, and I definitely found mine.

Why I Picked Trinity University (Washington, D.C.)

Jameka Hodnett, senior I visited Trinity University in the summer before college and fell completely in love. The campus was beautiful and quaint, but right within the hustle and bustle of Washington, D.C., which made it perfect. Being at Trinity makes you feel truly at home, as the professors and staff are welcoming and eager to give you a dynamic and challenging education.

At an alumni gathering, I was able to meet and become inspired by many Trinity grads, including Nancy Pelosi. With the programs and many opportunities it offers, Trinity shows its women that they are powerful and gives them the skills necessary to lead.

Why I Picked Rhode Island School of Design (Providence, R.I.)

Kaitlyn Schoeck, senior I chose Rhode Island School of Design because of the amazing education I thought I would receive, the roster of top-notch design professionals, and the artistic community here—all of which I've found to exceed their reputations. I didn't expect to also find that I would gain so much from the students around me, who make this institution unique.

Not only are we inspired every day by other students and the challenging curriculum, but the facilities at RISD are incomparable. The nature lab allows students to draw from real life, the huge studio spaces let us work on a broad range of projects, and the machine shops give us access to every machine you could imagine. We learn, design, and create every day without limits.

Why I Picked Miami University (Oxford, Ohio)

Mike Scott, 2012 graduate It is impossible to set foot in Oxford, Ohio, and not be enamored of the place. So it would be unfair to say that my choice had nothing to do with how beautiful it is. Fortunately, Miami University's true beauty goes much deeper. There is a culture of achievement, a rich history as the 10th oldest public university in the United States, a music program recognized for its successes, an incredible marching band, and a supportive community of 203 years. I made my career foundation all while on America's most beautiful campus.

Why I Picked Cooper Union (New York City)

Edison Wang, 2012 graduate I first heard about Cooper Union from my high school science teacher when I asked him to recommend the best engineering school that would also be financially feasible for an international student. Cooper fits this description because its mission is to make education "as free as air and water," and it covers 100 percent of every student's tuition by scholarship. As a result, it is extremely selective.

The coursework is rigorous, and students focus on learning the material while helping one another. All of our classes are very small, and most of the faculty are focused on teaching. Cooper has also made me a better entrepreneur, as it brings technology and art majors together.

Why I Picked Cal Maritime (Vallejo, Calif.)

Chaz West, senior I chose California Maritime Academy due to its reputation of being a great maritime institution. I thought the small size of the student population (about 850) would allow each student to receive far more hands-on experience than any other maritime university offers. The first summer cruise on the Training Ship Golden Bear was very rewarding, as we visited American Samoa, New Zealand, Australia, and Hawaii.