North Georgia compared to VMI/Norwich

Discussion in 'Publicly and Privately Funded Military Colleges' started by tonk002, Oct 10, 2010.

  1. tonk002

    tonk002 Member

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    Hi all. I am new to the forum. I am a junior in high school, and am interested in both USMA as well as Norwich, VMI and North Georgia. I am starting the ROTC scholarship process, and hope to get a AROTC scholarship.
    I have been to both Norwich and VMI, and really loved them both. However, I have never been to North Georgia, and could not find much about it on the forum. It looks like a great school, but before any research, I had never heard about it. The lack of name recognition was a draw-back for my parents, so I'd like to learn more about it. How does it compare to VMI and Norwich, both academically and in terms of ROTC training? I want to commission in the Army and know that North Georgia is only AROTC, but again, I know nothing about it. If it helps in answering the academic question, I'd like to major in Political Science.
    Also, I am a very competitive road cyclist racer, and I'd love to go to college and be able to race. Does anyone know if any of the schools (VMI, Norwich, N.Georgia) offer cycling clubs/teams?
    Thanks for your help.
     
  2. SF49ers

    SF49ers Member

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    When I was looking at colleges I visited both North Georgia and The Citadel. North Georgia is more along the lines of Norwich, with both civilian students and cadets on campus. The Citadel and VMI, in contrast, only have cadets. North Georgia is located in Dahlonega, which is a decent-sized town in the mountains of northern Georgia. The city and campus are very beautiful. I honestly, don't know much about academics at VMI and Norwich, so I couldn't really compare. I personally preferred the Citadel to North Georgia, because it was a more rigorous system and a stronger sense of unity amongst the cadets. But then again, the first week at North Georgia isn't a walk in the park either, and I didn't really get a good look at the military side of things when I visited. As for cycling, I don't know about any clubs at any of those schools for the sport, but I would be surprised if North Georgia didn't have a cycling club since the Tour de Georgia is a major cycling event. The best thing to do for any college, though, is to visit it.
     
  3. tonk002

    tonk002 Member

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    Thanks for the info. After looking at the website, I really need to go visit the campus. Just to ask anyone with experience with any of the SMC's (except for Texas A&M and VT - too big for me!) How do these schools compare to USMA? After visiting both SMC's and USMA, I'm trying to figure out what I should focus on applying for this spring (a congressional nomination or ROTC Scholarship, or both!)
    Many thanks.
     
  4. goldfarb1

    goldfarb1 Candidate

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    Fellow cyclist here.

    Anyways North GA is really in the middle of nowhere. Doesn't matter too much since you won't get out at all. I guess in your upper years when you can get out...you could head to Atlanta and run through the typical tourist attractions (Coca Cola Museum, etc.) and maybe catch a Braves/Falcons game. Nightlife in Atlanta would be pretty weak. GA State which is in the city, is mainly a commuter school. And Tech has something like a 10 to 3 male to female ratio. Athens (where UGA is) is about an hour and a half from North GA if you wanted to party. Cycling in North GA is absolutely amazing. Killer climbs and no traffic. Not sure if they still do the Tour de Georgia, thought they lost funding...but never kept up to date on that. I've gone up to North GA once to cycle. They do have a cycling club btw. If you like to fish, this is the place to do it. The rivers are well stocked, and the streams are never crowded.

    North GA gives out tons of ROTC scholarships. And even if you don't get one you can go through with the National Guard and they'll pick up the tab. I took the ASVAB and had a recruiter calling me from the GA National Guard telling me that it's super easy to get a scholarship through National Guard for North GA. Don't know the legitamcy of the claim, but I'd imagine it's relatively true.

    North GA is known for it's history program. A lot of civilians will go just for that program. There political science program (fellow future poly sci major as well) focuses on American politics and International politics....they've also got criminal justice if this is something you are interested in. Keep in mind VMI doesn't offer a major in political science, but they do offer it as a minor. History is the closest thing they have. Norwich takes a pretty whole hearted perspective in political science and focuses on American politics, IR, comp, and political philosophy.
     
  5. bruno

    bruno Retired Staff Member

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    I don't believe that what Goldfarb has posted is correct. According to the VMI web site VMI does indeed offer Political Science as a Major:

    http://www.vmi.edu/Academics.aspx?id=64&ekmensel=fb5d653b_14_0_64_3
    How do they compare? Well, none of the SMC's are as selective as the Service Academies. Some of them are however pretty highly ranked colleges in their own right. For example - since you have visited both VMI and Norwich: VMI was ranked the#3 public Liberal Arts College behind USMA and USNA by USNews and #62 overall and the Engineering program was ranked #20- and similarly was ranked by Forbes as #60 in their rankings of "Best Colleges". As your parents pointed out it has a lot of national Name Recognition as a result of its academic programs, small class sizes, record of Rhodes and Marshall Scholars as well as the record of its graduates in the military and civilian life. You are from New Hampshire- Norwich is a pretty well recognized name in New England and the Northeast as well as in the Army- and I know that there is a strong and active alumni network throughout NE (disclosure my two younger brothers went to Norwich long ago). Both schools are stuck out in the country pretty much in the middle of nowhere (though Norwich is pretty close to some really good skiing in the winter). Similarly - Citadel has a lot of name recognition in the military especially the Army and USMC and a strong alumni connection in and out of the military, and especially throughout the SouthEast. All of these schools feel different from each other- some of them significantly so. VMI is 100% military and Citadel (pretty much all undergrads are Cadets) I believe resemble each other the most, Norwich is about 50/50 Cadet to Civilian and the Corps at Texas A&M has a disproportionate impact on the school relative to its size - (It's a big corps but it's on a huge campus but it feels bigger than it is- they got a lot of clout there:thumb:) At North Georgia- the Corps is about 600 out of 5500- about 12% of the Student population. One of the best soldiers and leaders I have ever met, MG (Ret) Dave Grange Jr. is a North Georgia Graduate. However, as your parents have noted - it's not that well known outside of Georgia.

    Focusing on either a Congressional Nomination or an ROTC scholarship is not IMO the right approach- If you are interested in going into the Army you should be trying both for an ROTC Scholarship as well as an Appointment to USMA. If your principal career goal is to be a professional Army officer- you should strive to get into USMA as a first choice- but go after both routes because both are very difficult to achieve and neither is guaranteed no matter how strong you feel you are.
     
  6. goldfarb1

    goldfarb1 Candidate

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    I could be completely wrong. I'm definetly not an authority on the subject. When I went to one of the VMI recruiting events, the brochure had only listed political science as a minor. So I was just making an inference.

    If you click on the International Studies and Political Science degree link....it leads to this:
    http://www.vmi.edu/show.aspx?tid=37045&id=98&ekmensel=8f9c37c3_128_0_98_2

    It lists international studies as the major with options in Political Science and Security as minors. I guess that they just lump IS with political science, but just branch it under IS.
     
  7. mom3boys

    mom3boys Parent

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    I have a neighbor whose dad was a faculty member at USMA in the early
    80's. My neighbor wanted to attend, but didn't get in. As he states: "So I attended the second best commissioning source in the US: North Georgia."

    While Dahlonega (pronounced "da-lon-u-guh") is tucked away in the mountains and is a far piece from Atlanta, you will meet other students for whom Atlanta is home, so going down for the weekend is no big deal. There are plenty of places to find "night life," if you are so inclined. Many do head over to Athens for the weekend, as there is always a party at UGA.
     
  8. tonk002

    tonk002 Member

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    Thanks, Bruno and all, for the help regarding this. Im starting to understand how long the process is going to be, no matter what route I end up going. I have one more question, if you all don't mind: Because I am a junior, there are some summer events at some school that I can attend. West Point has one, but it may interfere with Boys State. Do VMI, N.Georgia or the Citadel offer these?

    SF49ers- I sent you a PM.
     
  9. bruno

    bruno Retired Staff Member

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    VMI does not- Norwich does hold a 2 week summer leadership camp and I know at least one current Cadet at Norwich who attended a couple of years ago and came away very pumped about the experience. I don't think that the Citadel does -but I could be wrong, and I really don't know about North Georgia.
     
  10. hawk

    hawk ButterBar Dad

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    I'll put it another way- the Dahlonega/Helen area is where many Atlantan's go for recreation. Mountain cabins, big woods, if you are into outdoor recreation (biking, whitewater, hiking, camping, etc) it's very centrally located to many opportunities.

    Yet just drop down highway 400 and you are in Atlanta, or several major suburbs between the two.

    While GT may have bad male/female ratio, you would drive past a dozen colleges & universities to get there that have plenty of females.

    We've had multiple friend's kids & scouts go to N GA, and all have girlfriends, so that apparently is not a problem!
     
  11. sprog

    sprog Member

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    I have a BA in International Studies from VMI. It's a comprehensive, interdisciplinary major with focus on history, political science, economics, and foreign language (six semesters). You take courses in all of the major areas of pol. science (comparative politics, American Government, international relations, and political theory). I think that they now require some study abroad as well. It was optional for me, and I did a summer at the University of Oxford in the UK, at St. Anne's College (I was an English minor, so this fit both academic interests for me). The IS Department teach all the political science classes, which form the bulk of the major.
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2010
  12. tonk002

    tonk002 Member

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    That sounds great. I am a Model UN student teacher, and hope to focus on International Affairs/Political Science. Study Abroad is something that I have enjoyed in the past- Ive gone to Brazil and Qatar, a small country near Saudi Arabia, for Model UN. All of the schools so far seem to offer Model UN and international affairs as options. Thanks all for your help.
     
  13. havana brown

    havana brown Member

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    I believe at VMI freshmen aren't allowed off campus until Thanksgiving. At NGC they have one closed weekend a month for drilling, but other than that the cadets are allowed off campus any time. Freshmen cadets (first semester) and cadets who have below a 2.5 are put on quarters for the semester. That means from Sunday-Thursday 8 p.m.-midnight they are required to be in their barracks. This allows them time to study and do homework until they bring their grades up. I love this system as it gives the freshman a good starting point in college. :smile:

    As for cycling, I was suprised to see how much there is. I was there for Parent's Weekend in September and there was some big bike race the same weekend. It's supposed to be a good place for cycling and biking.
     
  14. tonk002

    tonk002 Member

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    Thanks for the information. What is your connection to N.Georgia?
     
  15. havana brown

    havana brown Member

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  16. tonk002

    tonk002 Member

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    Thanks so much! Havana Brown - I sent you a PM.
     

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