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Old 02-12-2010, 05:49 AM
 
270 posts, read 436,764 times
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Hi, I'm from Mobile (pron. Moe-beel) Alabama. I kind of want a change of scenery. Although the university here has low in-state tuition, cultural diversity, wonderful challenging teachers, fun warm college communities, and insightful community service projects, I still think I would have a blast at a college in New York. I would need to find a way there, though, without having to pay out-of-state tuition. I would also likely be entering as a graduate student. Does anyone have any advice? I've heard getting into NYU is like getting into Harvard, so I might need to attend a community college first. Does anyone have a plan? I want to explore a little. I've been out of the country, but I've never been to the North. I've heard so much about NYC. Do you think I would really enjoy it if I went there?

Last edited by surburbangirlie; 02-12-2010 at 05:58 AM..
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Old 02-12-2010, 07:19 AM
 
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Are you currently attending a community college in Ala.? If so I would stay put, pay the low tuition and strive to graduate with a highly competitve gpa(>3.5). NYU is a private school so you will be charged the same price whether you were a resident of NY or Ala.NYU's undergrad school is not Harvard but it is very popular and highly competitive. What do you plan to study?

Also NY especially the NYU area is the complete opposite of Mobile.No one can tell you if you'd enjoy it so I would advise you to take a trip up to NYC and explore if you can handle the fast paced lifestyle,culture and vibrancy that makes NYC the best city in America albeit the most expensive.
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Old 02-12-2010, 07:36 AM
 
Location: New York, NY
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First of all, graduate school is very different from undergrad. You have a lot more responsibilities and are generally expected to work a lot harder. This means less partying and having fun (although this varies from student to student).

As for actually studying in NYC, grad programs are extremely competitive because everyone wants to come and live here. NYU is not nearly as hard to get into as Harvard (or Columbia or Barnard, the Ivy/Seven Sister in NYC). If you don't think you're good enough to get into NYU, I would proceed with caution. Most grad school funding is in the sciences- I remember from other threads that you are interested in English/Education. If you pursue either of those, there's a good chance you'll have to take out loans since you may not be competitive enough for scholarships. NYU is insanely expensive, and tack on another $20-30,000 a year for living expenses (and that's for a very modest lifestyle in an outer boro, no Sex and the City life for you). Do you really want to get $80,000 a year in debt for an English degree? Even if you go to a CUNY, you'll still be paying out of state tuition and still need to take out a lot of living expenses loans. If you are coming for a grad degree, you can't go to community college.

If you want to come to NYC, try to come and work for a year. It's a great city, but it's a tough one. Once you've been living and working here for a year, you qualify for in-state tuition at the CUNYs, which is a great bargain. They are pretty good schools and you can get a good education in either of your fields for a fraction of the cost. You could also look at doing Teach for America or the NYC Teaching fellows, which gives you your teaching credential and places you in a school, but those are very tough programs to get into.

Whatever you do, finish your BA in Alabama, especially if you like your school.
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Old 02-12-2010, 07:53 AM
 
270 posts, read 436,764 times
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I think working in NYC is a better option. Teach for America or the NYC Teaching fellows may be very hard to get into, but I would still like to try it. I would also like to know of similar opportunities that would allow me to teach in the city on a volunteer basis. One of my main reasons for wanting to come to NYC is because I've heard they have some of the best teaching methods in the U.S. I would like to sample the curriculum and learn first hand some the tricks for reaching disadvantaged students. I want to do my job well.
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Old 02-12-2010, 09:42 AM
 
Location: New York, NY
917 posts, read 2,618,396 times
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Several of my friends are teachers here and the city may have the best intentions, but they also have some of the worst students, and those are the ones you will interact with. If you want to learn how to be a good teacher, don't do Teach for America or NYC Teaching Fellows. You get three months of cramming and then they throw you into the worst schools in NYC (I know, I have several friends who went through the program). These programs have very high burn-out rates because the teachers often feel unprepared.

If you are serious about wanting to learn to be a good teacher, bust your buns until you graduate and apply to Teacher's College at Columbia. It's an Ivy, so competition is fierce, but the program is great. My college roommate went through it and is now a teacher in NYC. She is definitely having a better experience than my TFA friends.
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Old 02-12-2010, 11:28 AM
 
270 posts, read 436,764 times
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Teacher's College sounds like a good idea, too. Well, I would need a lot more information and a plan to get in. It's not impossible, and I have a fairly good GPA. I just don't think it can compete with some of the others who may apply, though. I need to make my application stand out somehow. I also need to develop good networking skills. Does anyone have any suggestions as to how I could get into an Ivy League graduate school from an average university?

I still think I may try TFA or maybe even the Peace Corps, if my other plans don't work out. I've just heard so much about it. Before I jump in, is there a site where I can find more personal stories from those who participated in TFA?

Last edited by surburbangirlie; 02-12-2010 at 11:47 AM..
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Old 02-12-2010, 11:49 AM
 
270 posts, read 436,764 times
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I would still like to check out New York, though. I've heard so much about the city. Studying in New York would be quite an opportunity, in my opinion.
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Old 02-12-2010, 12:16 PM
 
479 posts, read 792,017 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by collegestudentfromalabama View Post
Teacher's College sounds like a good idea, too. Well, I would need a lot more information and a plan to get in. It's not impossible, and I have a fairly good GPA. I just don't think it can compete with some of the others who may apply, though. I need to make my application stand out somehow. I also need to develop good networking skills. Does anyone have any suggestions as to how I could get into an Ivy League graduate school from an average university?

I still think I may try TFA or maybe even the Peace Corps, if my other plans don't work out. I've just heard so much about it. Before I jump in, is there a site where I can find more personal stories from those who participated in TFA?
High GPA+High GRE score+killer letter of rec. will open doors for you.Do you participate in any extra curriculars at school?If not then I would seek some orgs/clubs to join.Being from Ala. would definitely be a plus to a Columbia/NYU who actively seek diverse student bodies.
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Old 02-12-2010, 12:46 PM
 
270 posts, read 436,764 times
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Currently, my GPA is below a 4.0. I may not do so well on the math part of the GRE, because math is my weakest subject. As far as a letter of recommendation, I don't really know how to network. I know it would be a useful, perhaps even necessary, skill, but I may not be sure how to start.
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Old 02-12-2010, 06:15 PM
 
8,056 posts, read 8,576,960 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by collegestudentfromalabama View Post
I think working in NYC is a better option. Teach for America or the NYC Teaching fellows may be very hard to get into, but I would still like to try it. I would also like to know of similar opportunities that would allow me to teach in the city on a volunteer basis. One of my main reasons for wanting to come to NYC is because I've heard they have some of the best teaching methods in the U.S. I would like to sample the curriculum and learn first hand some the tricks for reaching disadvantaged students. I want to do my job well.

Some of the best teaching methods in the US? If a fight in the classroom doesn't break out for a whole day, then the teacher has been a success.

But seriously . . . the best way to be a good teacher is not through coursework but from experience. Get a student teaching position with the best master teacher that you can. Another avenue is to be a substitute teacher. Yes, the kids will treat you like crap, but you will make mistakes and learn from them. You will get to see how other teachers operate and experience so many varieties of teaching styles. If you can stomach substitute teaching for a year, you will learn a lot.
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