Dr. Helen

Colleges That Change Lives

I am reading a terrific book by Loren Pope & Hilary Masell Oswarld entitled Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About Colleges. From the description:

Choosing the right college has never been more important—or more difficult. For the latest edition of this classic college guide, Hilary Masell Oswald conducted her own tours of top schools and in-depth interviews, building on Loren Pope’s original to create a totally updated, more expansive work. Organized by geographic region, every profile includes a wealth of vital information, including admissions standards, distinguishing facts about the curriculum, extracurricular activities, and what faculty say about their jobs. Masell Oswald also offers a new chapter on how students with learning disabilities can find schools that fit their needs. For every prospective college student searching for more than football and frat parties, Colleges That Change Lives will prove indispensable.

Fully revised and updated by education journalist Hilary Oswald, Colleges That Change Lives remains the definite guide for high school students (and their parents) who are looking for more in their college education than football, frat parties, and giant lectures. Building on the foundation of landmark author Loren Pope, Oswald spent more than a year visiting 40 colleges, speaking with students, faculty, and alumni to create these vivid and concise portraits.

The book has been out with various updates since 1996 and it a good read to give your son or daughter when they are thinking about schools other than large state ones or the Ivy League. The book focuses on why it is important to get the right fit for college rather than looking only at status and how a school ranks.

One thing about the book I found rather amusing is that it said most undergrads are ignored and just left to their own devices or if they were the Ivy League, they just made you feel good and didn’t challenge students much. Given the current political climate of our universities these days, that sounded good to me.