Friday, April 24, 2009
UF versus FSU
Let me preempt this post to disclaim that it is not written to incite a riot among my friends, so keep the comments nice! : ) Our family spent Easter on the road, touring Taryn's top two college choices... University of Florida and Florida State University. Technically, UF is her number one choice, for the following reasons: 3 hours from home, extremely competitive acceptance rate, and highly regarded medical school. Before our trip, it was her only choice. We insisted on the tours so she could decide on a back up plan. Why, you ask? At the tour, UF admissions reported that 27,000 students applied in 08, and only 10,000 were accepted! UF's new nickname, "Harvard of the South."
Our first tour was FSU, home of the Seminoles and garnet & gold. The downside: 6 hours from home. The upside: the campus is gorgeous and more condensed than UF, with 450+ acres to UF's 2000 acres. Brick buildings, sprawling lawns, beautiful landscaping, rolling hills. Our tour guide, whom we fondly termed "gazelle", sprinted across the entire campus in 1.5 hours, describing every single building and the statistics, history and contents of each. Post campus tour, our visit to the Gamma chapter of Chi Omega (my sorority from Syracuse) was lovely. Our new friends, Shawnti (FSU cheerleader and recruitment chair), Anna and Brittney, chatted it up with Taryn. She even had a few moments of inspiration from a pre-med student, giving her the low down. The trip was complete with dinner and a cold one (for me and Gene) at Po Boys, in downtown Tally, where we enjoyed cajun gumbo and some very loud live music. College town.
Our first night at UF was spent with one of our favorite Gainesville girls, Alyse. This is our second trip to the campus and our second meal with the daughter of my good friend Karen. Alyse took us to a pretty little mall, where we had yummy bar food (nachos, wings, etc) at Gator Something (it'll come to me). It was pouring when we woke, but alas, campus tour guides handed out Gator ponchos. Luckily, the rain paused and we took a wonderfully entertaining tour around a small section of the campus (can't do the whole thing in 1.5 hours). The campus is immense and very beautiful with large shade trees dripping with moss. Our favorite parts: the humor of the 3 college student guides, the relaxed pace of the tour, and the FLATness. Again, we repeated a visit to the Eta Delta chapter of Chi Omega, and spent a long lunch with Susan the house mother. A lovely, vibrant lady who the girls lovingly refer to as, "Mom." This chapter house is a big one, housing 47 girls! We met Tara and a couple other Chi O's as well, and Taryn was sure she would love to be a Chi Omega.
The long and short... a great time was had by all. And, we now have 2 wonderful choices for Taryn's undergraduate education. Which do I like better? It's a toss up. UF reminds me more of a quaint town, like Wellesley Mass, whereas FSU is more college campus, like Syracuse. If I had to choose... it'd be UF. 2 Reasons: 1) Orange & Blue are the same colors I had in college, and 2) Momma only wants to drive 3 hours!