Ah, College. As the happy/sad, wonderful/ horrible years of high school start drawing to a close, many students are beginning to contemplate their lives outside these “hallowed halls”, as Ms. Darbus (The one from High School Musical) would say.
When students were asked what the first thing they thought of when they heard the word “college”, they responded with “Hard,” Brooke Mellema (12); “Exciting” Taylor Slager (11); and “Expensive” Lyric Muraoka (10).
Here’s the lowdown of some of the most well-ranked, popular and respected schools in Michigan. Hopefully some of this information will promote more happy vibes and eradicate the fears that college seems to be synonymous.
Hope College- Email: [email protected]
Mid Range ACT Scores: 24-29
Most popular majors: Business, General English and Literature, General Psychology
Fun Facts: Hope College is centered around a more religious college experience, so wild parties and drinking are very minimal. It’s counterpart, the city of Holland, is filled with charm, and students can easily move from the campus to the downtown area. Hope College also has movie screenings, concerts, stand- up comedy and improv group performances on campus. But honestly, the cherry on top of the sundae? They have a Quidditch team. Oh, yeah. It really does exist.
Kalamazoo College- Email- [email protected]
Mid Range ACT Scores: 25-30
Tuition: $41, 061
Most popular majors: Economics, English Language and Literature, Psychology
Fun Facts: Kalamazoo College is a very highly respected school in Michigan, but its impressive qualities also lie beyond the classroom. Students at K College strongly recommend taking advantage of the study abroad program before graduating; it’s one of the school’s most recognized features. There is also a movie theater near the campus called The Rave that sells $5 movie tickets. Another thing current students suggest is to bring your own car, since public transportation is few and far between.
Michigan State University- [email protected] (can take up to four weeks for response)
Mid Range ACT scores: 23-28
Most popular majors: Advertising, Finance, Education
Fun Facts: MSU features over 200 programs of study and an endless selection of extracurriculars. Academically, MSU is one of the top in the nation, but the Spartans also know how to have a good time. Greek life is extremely dominant on campus, but not unavoidable if that’s not what you’re into. Another popular activity on campus is “Spartan Idol”, a singing competition that is MSU’s answer to American Idol.
University of Michigan- Email- [email protected]
Mid Range ACT Scores: 28-32
Most popular majors: Experimental Psychology, Engineering, Business
Fun Facts: Studies and culture are two very prevalent parts of the U of M culture. Most students spend their time in Ann Arbor, although Detroit is only about an hour away, because the town is considered the “quintessential college town, with a wide range of cultural opportunities and ways for students to get involved.” (Fiske Guide to Colleges) By far the most highly- revered activity is tailgating. Football is obviously, a large part of most colleges, but at Michigan, it’s a way of life.
Central Michigan University: Email- [email protected]
Mid Range ACT Scores: 20-24
Most popular majors: Business, Pre- Med, Broadcasting and Cinematic Arts
Fun Facts: “We offer a variety of experiences that students are looking for in their college of choice: sporting events, concerts, Study Abroad, 200 registered student groups, Greek Life… Our campus is about a 20 minute walk, end to end. We are a very welcoming campus and are normally characterized as friendly!” said CMU Admissions Counselor Crystal Sattelburg.
Grand Valley State University: Email- [email protected]
Mid Range ACT scores: 21-26
83 % Accepted
Most popular majors: Accounting, Advertising, Criminal Justice
Fun Facts: At GVSU, in order to be eligible for the Presidential Merit Scholarship, there is a competition, in which all students with a 3.8 and a 32 composite ACT score can take part in. The average class size is 27, and all classes are taught by certified professors, no student aids or grad students. Grand Valley is located near Grand Rapids, which gives students the perfect opportunity to spend a weekend out at the many museums or zoos.
What makes certain applicants stand out?
Sattelburg also says that a “consistent or growing” GPA is one of the biggest factors to setting yourself apart from other applicants. “Our merit awards are based on student’s GPA and ACT/SAT scores,” she continues.
Salvador Lopez, GVSU’s admissions counselor said that “essays, letters of recommendation… difficulty of class schedule,” are all factors that make certain applicants rise above the rest.
What advice would you give to incoming freshmen?
Lopez of GVSU said, “I would advise incoming freshmen to manage their time and use the resources available to them. GVSU has a lot of resources such as free tutoring, writing labs, math labs, and a library that offers research assistants and presentation rooms. These are all great resources to use.”
“I would say to be open minded. College is about learning, not just in the classroom but learning who you are and what you are going to contribute to society. Take on the opportunities offered to you…Go beyond your areas of comfort,” said Sattelburg
Resources: The Insider’s Guide to the Colleges- compiled by the Yale Daily News
Fiske Guide to Colleges (2015) by Edward B. Fiske
America’s Best Colleges (2013) by Gen and Kelly Tanabe
Alaina Taylor’s wonderful, fabulous, well-thought out, took more than 3 minutes……
Students From Last Years Graduating Class:
CMU- 5 students
GVSU- 10 students (including our 2013-14 opinion editor Jon Crowell and staff writer Sami Melvin)
Kalamazoo College- 3 students
Hope College- 3 students (including our 2013-14 feature editor, Hannah Winegar)
MSU- 26 students
U of M- 16 students (Including our 2013-14 editor in chief, Dianne Ro)