Team Sank is off on a new adventure these days; the placement of our oldest heir in an accredited institution of higher learning. I could wax on for a long time about “where did the time go” and ” seems like just yesterday…” Which it does seem like just the other day that the Jock came walking down the jet way when we first moved to Minnesota, 4 years old and pushing his brothers stroller with Mom.
yeah. Now were off looking at schools… I’m actually not all that melancholy to be honest, we do have two more on deck and don’t officially enter the empty nest phase for another 7 years or so. Next year we’ll still have one in elementary school after all, we do have a bit of a way to go.
So the boy is off to the big world of college. As parents, we do get to make some decisions for the lad, since ultimately the finances flow through us.. and so far we’ve only put in a few.
1) Thou shall not attend any school within 100 miles of thy parents house. This rules out the University of Minnesota. Not a bad thing frankly. Mrs S and I both feel pretty strongly that the college experience includes leaving home and living on your own. The “U” would not afford that. The lad hates the Gophers hockey team so this wasn’t much of an issue anyway except with a few or neighbors who can’t believe we would eliminate such a grand institution.
2) Thou shall not attend any public university, college, trade school or vocational institute funded by the State of Minnesota. In other words no Mankato State, no U of M Duluth, Moorehead and Morris we can negotiate but no St. Cloud etc. In our research, corroborated with our friends and other parents also shopping schools.. not where we want the lad to go.
Seems to be the general consensus that Minnesota has OK state schools and some really great private schools. Wisconsin has some really great state school and, other than a few high profile (sports) schools like Marquette, smaller less known private schools.
We’re lucky, the dude can be picky at least a little. He should be coming out of high school with about a 3.8 GPA, not the best but good enough to select from several options, and hes got strong ACT scores. He’s also the Eagle Scout, the Varsity Letter in sports, the French club geek and so forth.
3) Thou shall not go to any school sponsored or run by a fundamentalist religious institution. This won’t be a problem, but no school with “bible college” in the name.
That’s it. Three easy criteria.
There was a 4th but Mrs S and Grandpa struck it from the list against my wishes. If thou decideist to pursue a major in business, finance, accounting, or management, and if thou thinkist that thou wants to get an MBA.. I ain’t paying for it.. no business majors..
Bitter Dad syndrome but after 20 years in this gig.. do something rewarding.
Among the schools that are “good”, most of the State Universities in Wisconsin where we get reciprocity. Schools like UW Eau Claire and UW Lacrosse have really good academic reputations, fine faculty and small classes that make them comparable to many of the outstanding private schools in Minnesota.
So for those of you interested in making book on the lads decision, here’s the front runners…
1st of all know that they lad has sort of decided that he wants to go into geology. After listening to his father talk about his career (sic) in the world of business, he wants none of it. He’s decided the wants something where he can be out doors. A good choice for him.
So in his school search, here’s what we’ve come up with.
As of July 1, 2008 the front runner is..
The Colorado School of Mines.
Funny, 30 years ago I was in Colorado with my high school. We went to Golden to see the mountains and Coors and there on the hill was a sign for Mines. “School of Mines” I thought, “Who would go to a school of mines..” Well.. turns out it’s a top notch institution. Good luck getting in dude. One down note on my side.. I’m not sure I could get excited about being an “Oredigger” to be honest.
Close second… Michigan Tech
Houghten Michigan is a great environment for this kid and I’m hopeful for this one. While both schools are small, which I believe he needs, and both are in outdoor wonderlands, which this kid loves, and both are excellent, especially in his field of choice, Tech has a the ski hill on campus and is an 8 hour drive, not insurmountable. Go for Tech… BTW a Husky is much more approachable than an Oredigger.
The long shot school.. Cornell.
I’m not sure he has the grades or the activities for Cornell, but if should get in there how can you tell him no. He’s never visited the school so we’ll have to figure out that one..
Last on the current active list… Missouri School of Science and Technology. Formally known as Missouri School of Mines in Rolla Missouri. This one is comparable to Tech and Mines, only in Missouri. I’m not sure rural Missouri is where this kid would want to be.. but who knows. It is a good school and small and has all the other good things Tech and Mines have.. except it’s in… Missouri. No skiing, no mountains.. Ozarks? Who knows, we’re visiting in 4 weeks.
Other thoughts.. he believes he wants to live in Seattle for some reason. He’s never been there for heavens sake.. he likes rain and thinks that’s the bomb. Washington has come up as an option as well, but a loong shot as I think his other choices are better and his reasoning on that school isn’t so sound.
That’s it. The Future Sweepstakes for this kid are just getting started. You’ll be seeing more about this in this very space as the year goes on.