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Old 09-29-2010, 12:29 PM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
1,951 posts, read 2,103,906 times
Reputation: 1537
The first schools that came to my mind were:

Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken, a private, four-year school with an excellent reputation.

NJIT in Newark, a public four-year school, not as prestigious as Stevens but not bad at all.

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, NY (near Albany), a private, four-year school with an excellent reputation.
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Old 09-29-2010, 12:49 PM
 
Location: NJ
17,580 posts, read 19,413,481 times
Reputation: 15360
Quote:
Originally Posted by AAVC View Post
Hi,
Also, I want a nurturing environment, not strict and cold, as he will shut down. He does best with smart, good people.
I have to say this kind of sounds like a recipe for disaster. Smart "good" people?

College can be pretty overwhelming. Kids have never had so much freedom in their lives. No one is going to keep the "bad" people away.
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Old 09-29-2010, 01:34 PM
 
1,698 posts, read 3,792,874 times
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If you are in Central NJ, how about Princeton? They have a good grad school, ranked 17th by US News (and pretty small). Rankings - Best Engineering Schools - Graduate Schools - Education - US News

Close enough to get home whenever he needs to! (like when his laundry is piled sky high)
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Old 09-29-2010, 01:44 PM
 
9,125 posts, read 22,942,012 times
Reputation: 3321
As BCJ said, a 2-year college may be a good place for him to start (wow- I agreed with Johnny....lol).

Engineering programs are not "nurturing environments"- they've typically got very large class sizes, with many lower-level classes taught by grad students who could care less about your son's ADD or "nurturing" him. There's a good chance that if he starts off in such a program, he'll hate it and end up dropping out (I know, because I did it myself).

I started at NJIT straight out of high school, and it was a night and day difference- no guidance counselors to check in on you, no homeroom to make sure you were there, no teachers asking you about that assignment you missed, etc. After a year of trying to deal with that (and not doing too well), I transfered to Middlesex County College and got my AAS degree. The classes were smaller, the professors actually took an interest in their students, and the program was more managable. I transfered back to NJIT after MCC, and graduated with a 3.97 out of 4.0, which would have never happened otherwise.

The other advantage to starting at the 2-year school is that he'll have other options to explore if engineering turns out not to be his thing. Many of the bigger engineering schools have a limited selection of programs other than engineering, so his options will be limited if he wants to switch majors.
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Old 09-29-2010, 01:58 PM
 
26,947 posts, read 20,051,738 times
Reputation: 24189
Quote:
Originally Posted by AAVC View Post
Hi,

My son just started 10th grade and is talking about going into engineering, and thinking about an engineering college. He is part of the Robotics Club at his high school and loves it. However, he also loves Civics, History, Law, and I am not sure if he will really end up as an engineer... He likes the idea of teaching as well. He is very bright, yet sensitive and a bit shy. He is also ADD. I am sharing all this with you because I am trying to determine which college we should look into... Ideally, it should be easy enough for him to come home over the weekend if he chooses to. Also, I want a nurturing environment, not strict and cold, as he will shut down. He does best with smart, good people. He is attending one of the best public high schools in central NJ, and his grades are not perfect, but pretty good, showing good progress in moving up levels. He plans to go to graduate school as well. Cost is not an issue for us, however, lower cost is preferable (of course).

Thank you in advance for any tips you can give me.
Look at Stevens Institute in Hoboken, NJ.

Stevens Institute of Technology: Hoboken, New Jersey, USA

And the New Jersey Institute of Technology.

NJIT: New Jersey's Science & Technology University

I work with engineers, many of whom attended those two schools.

Some others are graduates of Manhattan College in the Bronx.

Welcome to Manhattan College
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Old 09-29-2010, 02:31 PM
 
Location: New Jersey
4,086 posts, read 4,869,727 times
Reputation: 2516
Quote:
Originally Posted by AAVC View Post
Thank you. College is for him, no question about it. He is very, very bright. He placed in the most advanced category in Math at the state level... He wants to get a PhD, so an AA degree is not the goal... We want a four year college with an excellent reputation, that will prepare/position him well for an advanced degree, so that's what the question is...
Earlier you said you hoped his grades would improve as they were "not perfect" and mentioned his ADD which means you clearly believe that is an issue regarding his learning. Now you're saying he is advanced in Math... Could it be Asperger's, perhaps? I'm just finding it difficult to understand what your question is since you wanted to make clear his grades are not great and he has ADD. I figure if it were as simple as he is a very good student you'd have just said that much. Since you mentioned other issues I figure that these are areas of concern. You also said he needs "nurturing" lest he "shut down"...this does not to me sound like someone who should at this point be thinking ahead to PhD when the immediate concern is for nurturing to prevent shutting down (and in most undergrad but definitely in ANY graduate level, even Master's, there is no "nurturing" - it is expected for people to be self-sufficient and do all the work themselves).

Anyway, I'm not sure I understand why an AA is not in the picture - I never said it was the goal, I said it was something he could and would attain on the way to a 4-year degree, and from the 4-year degree he can clearly go on to a Master's and PhD. There are many who started in community college and went on to excellent schools for higher degrees. I had a friend at Columbia who started at Bergen Community, went on to Rutgers, and after that Columbia and from there he went to Stanford for a PhD.

Anyway, if your son is so above community college and you want prestige then I highly recommend Princeton, Cornell, Columbia, Penn, and Yale - hopefully those are more in line with what you wanted to hear. But really I think you should consider where you are where you want to go and that the route may not be the "traditional" one of a "prestigious" 4-year college and on to graduate level. I hope your son has all the success in the world, I really do; I just also hope that you set him up for success given the concerns that you yourself are aware of and think are important enough to mention as you ask us total strangers for advice. I see no reason why he can't go from an AA to a good school like Rutgers and then on to any number of great schools for graduate study.

Last edited by BergenCountyJohnny; 09-29-2010 at 02:41 PM..
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Old 09-29-2010, 02:48 PM
 
49 posts, read 77,823 times
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I'm not sure why people look down on an AA (or the idea of going to a community college). The goal is to go beyond that. One of the issues with bigger universities (most schools that offer engineering are fairly big) is that many kids are going to fail out of engineering. A lot of kids go into it but cannot hack it so professors aren't going to spend a lot of time with students in the freshman classes; it's left up to TAs to help them when they look for help. I went to Penn State and found the main campus overwhelming. I switched to a smaller campus and loved it. I did my graduate work at Rutgers and found it to be even less personal. I took classes at a community college (after Penn State and RU) and loved it!

My cousin went to Drexel for engineering. He is super smart though his grades did not always reflect that. He's a very successful engineer today and really like Drexel. He graduated 20 years ago though.
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Old 09-29-2010, 02:54 PM
 
Location: New Jersey
4,086 posts, read 4,869,727 times
Reputation: 2516
Quote:
Originally Posted by BobKovacs View Post
As BCJ said, a 2-year college may be a good place for him to start (wow- I agreed with Johnny....lol).
All I know is that Venus, Mars, Mercury, and Jupiter are all in perfect alignment tonight...

Quote:
Originally Posted by BobKovacs View Post
Engineering programs are not "nurturing environments"- they've typically got very large class sizes, with many lower-level classes taught by grad students who could care less about your son's ADD or "nurturing" him. There's a good chance that if he starts off in such a program, he'll hate it and end up dropping out (I know, because I did it myself).

I started at NJIT straight out of high school, and it was a night and day difference- no guidance counselors to check in on you, no homeroom to make sure you were there, no teachers asking you about that assignment you missed, etc. After a year of trying to deal with that (and not doing too well), I transfered to Middlesex County College and got my AAS degree. The classes were smaller, the professors actually took an interest in their students, and the program was more managable. I transfered back to NJIT after MCC, and graduated with a 3.97 out of 4.0, which would have never happened otherwise.

The other advantage to starting at the 2-year school is that he'll have other options to explore if engineering turns out not to be his thing. Many of the bigger engineering schools have a limited selection of programs other than engineering, so his options will be limited if he wants to switch majors.
You give a great example of how community college can be a great thing for some. I experienced a mini-version of your story... After having straight A's in high school (mostly effortlessly) I skated into Rutgers and first semester wound up with all C's and a D. Second semester was some improvement but not much, still C's and B's. In the summer, I went to Bergen to make up for the D and took another course. It was the perfect blend of college and hand-holding that I needed to get up to the next level. I went back to Rutgers and finished the next 3 years with mostly A's and B's and salvaged my GPA to a large extent. Also, I learned better and was able to find direction in my educational path. I attribute it to Bergen Community College (where I have returned throughout the years for further professional and personal development). Oh, and I was accepted into Columbia for a Master's degree despite having gone to community college.

And as someone else mentioned, nowadays the cost consideration is important. When I was at Rutgers it was around $7,000 a year, including room and board - community college wouldn't have saved much, not to mention I barely paid any of the $7,000 due to scholarships. But today the savings of 10's of thousands for doing two years at community college is well worth it. Someone's Rutgers or NJIT or Montclair diploma is no more valuable for having gone all 4 years there than the diploma of the person who did 2 years at community college and then 2 at the 4-year school; there's no asterisk on the diploma or anything like that, it's as valid as any other from that school.
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Old 09-29-2010, 06:37 PM
 
Location: New Jersey
908 posts, read 921,539 times
Reputation: 432
Rowan University

College of Engineering - Rowan University
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Old 09-29-2010, 06:39 PM
 
Location: NJ
96 posts, read 182,710 times
Reputation: 89
Stevens, Lafayette and Lehigh are all very, very good.
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