U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Montana > Bozeman
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
 
Old 01-25-2014, 09:51 PM
 
1 posts, read 3,298 times
Reputation: 10

Advertisements

I'm a 17 year old female from rural upstate New York, looking to attend college in Montana. I have visited Montana recently and loved it, and I'm planning another trip out soon to look at both Montana State University and the University of Montana. I have already been accepted to both, and I guess I'm just trying to make my decision between the two.

I love nature and the outdoors. Especially skiing, hiking, kayaking, running, and a lot of other things. I'm a big supporter of sustainability and going green. I'm pretty free spirited and also very liberal. I'm into the "coffee shop" scene (I currently work at one) and I really enjoy music and art festivals. I'm looking for an exciting night life for the college aged crowd.

I guess my main question is, what is life like as a college student in Bozeman and Missoula? Pros and cons of each? Weather won't be an issue, I like the cold. And I've already read a lot about the high cost of living/low wages topic so please stray from that subject.

I'd really love suggestions of the best/most challenging ski resorts in these areas. I can't wait to ski out west and get away from the east coast.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 01-25-2014, 10:37 PM
 
Location: C-U metro
1,359 posts, read 2,627,828 times
Reputation: 1157
It would help to know what you are majoring in. I would recommend being more concerned about getting through school with a decent degree than one without. For example, an IT degree from UM doesn't have much cache since there is no engineering school at UM.

As far as skiing goes, Bozeman has the better areas by far. Bridger Bowl has a great selection of groomed runs, back country and the only true shuttes in Montana. The lift tickets are reasonable and it is 15 minutes from town. It isn't as swanky as Big Sky but it doesn't have the "down home" feel that it did when I worked there in the '90s either. Plenty of locals just pack a lunch but the brown bag areas are very small as to what they used to be. Big Sky is about 90 miles away and is the large resort in the area. The tickets are more expensive and the food is too. I don't know if they even have a brown bag area anymore but I hadn't been there in years either.

Snow in Montana is varied. You can get the icy snow that you are accustomed to on the east coast. It can also be in pellets, flakes or a fine dust. Getting consistent fluffy snow is rare in Montana but after being packed and groomed, snow is snow.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-25-2014, 11:06 PM
 
Location: North Dakota
7,032 posts, read 8,195,061 times
Reputation: 9234
Quote:
Originally Posted by zashford View Post
I'm a 17 year old female from rural upstate New York, looking to attend college in Montana. I have visited Montana recently and loved it, and I'm planning another trip out soon to look at both Montana State University and the University of Montana. I have already been accepted to both, and I guess I'm just trying to make my decision between the two.

I love nature and the outdoors. Especially skiing, hiking, kayaking, running, and a lot of other things. I'm a big supporter of sustainability and going green. I'm pretty free spirited and also very liberal. I'm into the "coffee shop" scene (I currently work at one) and I really enjoy music and art festivals. I'm looking for an exciting night life for the college aged crowd.

I guess my main question is, what is life like as a college student in Bozeman and Missoula? Pros and cons of each? Weather won't be an issue, I like the cold. And I've already read a lot about the high cost of living/low wages topic so please stray from that subject.

I'd really love suggestions of the best/most challenging ski resorts in these areas. I can't wait to ski out west and get away from the east coast.
Realistically you'll get the same from both towns, although Bozeman is closer to ski resorts.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-26-2014, 12:19 PM
 
4,107 posts, read 3,444,432 times
Reputation: 8174
Skiing- Bridger, Whitefish, Targhee

College- degree & field of study dependent

Nightlife- Missoula has more of coffee house music scene

Green- both, Bozeman has fake pretentious newcomer thing going where Missoula seems legit

Montana is rural...very rural. You will either love that or depise that. Good luck.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-26-2014, 02:13 PM
 
Location: Oklahoma
5,583 posts, read 5,511,398 times
Reputation: 4814
Having visited both places (but not having attended college) the only thing I would add is that Mizzoula/UM has a nicer campus and has a more traditional college feel to it. Bozeman/MSU seems more toned down and the college doesn't seem to dominate the scene quite as much. From what I understand, Bozeman is colder and windier in the winter.

Missoula is in a real beautiful valley and has a river running right by campus. Bozeman is about 5 miles from the mouth of the Gallitan River Valley which is incredibly beautiful. Missoula is closer to Glacier NP/Idaho while Bozeman is closer to Yellowstone and is more centrally located to the rest of Montana.

From what I understand, while both communities are liberal, the campus at UM is more liberal than MSU which has more ag/ranching students that tend to be more conservative.

As others have said, it might come down to your major, but both would be wonderful to experience.

If somebody put a gun to my head making a choice I would probably go to UM..............
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-26-2014, 03:47 PM
 
2,147 posts, read 4,185,507 times
Reputation: 1636
Quote:
Originally Posted by eddie gein View Post
Having visited both places (but not having attended college) the only thing I would add is that Mizzoula/UM has a nicer campus and has a more traditional college feel to it. Bozeman/MSU seems more toned down and the college doesn't seem to dominate the scene quite as much. From what I understand, Bozeman is colder and windier in the winter.

Missoula is in a real beautiful valley and has a river running right by campus. Bozeman is about 5 miles from the mouth of the Gallitan River Valley which is incredibly beautiful. Missoula is closer to Glacier NP/Idaho while Bozeman is closer to Yellowstone and is more centrally located to the rest of Montana.

From what I understand, while both communities are liberal, the campus at UM is more liberal than MSU which has more ag/ranching students that tend to be more conservative.

As others have said, it might come down to your major, but both would be wonderful to experience.

If somebody put a gun to my head making a choice I would probably go to UM..............
This is a great post...well said!
When I lived in Missoula [in the mid 90's], Bozeman was still referenced as 'cow town'-agricultural university...Bozeman was just starting to shift gears into what it is today...I liken Missoula to Eugene and Bozeman to Corvallis, similar in that Corvallis was the agricultural university [as far as programs], and still is, but has also become a bit of an upscale family community with some trendiness, as well. [though not as much as Bozeman] In case people are familiar with Oregon, that is...(:

Missoula does 'seem more legit' re: going green etc, b/c Missoula was a haven for hippies (long tradition of bohemian cultural influence, artists, writers, etc) and has a long tradition of progressive politics and a renowned environmental studies program [and graduate program] at U of M. It also has a long tradition of hosting writers and a highly regarded creative writing program.

Bozeman has seen more of an influx of folks 'wanting the package' (Missoula has seen some of this, too-ahem, 'hip strip'? But in Missoula, it's incorporated into what was an already existing foundation). There wasn't really a legit foundation in Bozeman for 'green living' [once known as environmental activism], 'cultural creatives' [at that time, they were just out of the box folks who happened to be creative/artists, etc]. So yea, Bozeman feels a bit more like a veneer than the real deal in that regard.

Also, Missoula was on the farmer's market and coffee house train long before it was trendy. Butterfly Herbs is an icon. I'm not familiar with the coffee house scene in Bozeman.

Also, landscape wise, Bozeman is in a more open plain area, mountains in the distance; Missoula is in a valley. This valley location does keep some of the wind and cold out. Also, Missoula has an inversion layer in the winter-which means more cloudy days in town and sometimes poor air quality. It gets trapped in the valley; this also adds warmth, however (relatively speaking, of course!) River runs through town in Missoula, with lots of bike trails-it's a top college town for biking (I'm not familiar with Bozeman re: biking). Pretty easy to get by without a car.

Flights are also something to potentially consider: Both have an airport; Bozeman is drivable to Billings, too. Missoula is 3 hours from Spokane, WA, where you can get cheap SW flights, etc.

Good luck w/you decision-if you love Montana, you probably cannot go wrong in either place, as far as college experience. [depending on your major, too, as mentioned by others].

Last edited by lrmsd; 01-26-2014 at 03:55 PM..
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-28-2014, 09:02 PM
 
Location: Valley of the Sun
1,314 posts, read 987,643 times
Reputation: 1711
I wouldn't choose another school after being provided with a great education and college life in Missoula. It was a great place to go to school and I wouldn't have traded it for another school. Very "free" thinking town, with great nightlife and tons of recreational opportunities. The campus is beautiful and easy to get around being relatively compact in size. It depends on your planned major but UM prepared me well for completing my Master's work at another school.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-04-2014, 07:23 PM
 
3 posts, read 4,693 times
Reputation: 13
I visited both towns while living for a year in Helena, MT.

I'd have to say I preferred Missoula.

The university is gorgeous with stately buildings, mountains on all sides, and the big M perfectly outlining the University on the mountain above it. A river runs through the city and it is very much a college town. One of the most unique and beautiful campuses I've ever seen. It also has a very good shopping area with a nice mall (by Montana standards). One thing to note, however, is the university is suffering from serious budget issues right now.

I was a little disappointed by Bozeman. It has beautiful mountains. Much higher peaks and more impressive than Missoulas, but they are miles off in the distance and not really part of the city which is mostly flat as a pancake. The university itself is kind of ugly and generic and more functional. The mall and shopping areas are lacking as well compared to Missoula. However, the city does have a very nice and long main street area.

I can't really comment on the academics (which is really the most important factor) but I get the sense that UM is more liberal arts and MSU is more technical.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:


Options
X
Data:
Loading data...
Based on 2000-2016 data
Loading data...

123
Hide US histogram


Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Montana > Bozeman
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2018, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top