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    Hey guys not sure how many of you are interested in applying to the US from the UK, but have you heard anything about the parties? Obviously the parties in movies such as The Social Network seem pretty vibrant but that's not a very reliable source!
    As well as working hard, like many others, I want to experience some good parties and I'm not sure whether I would be missing out on a lot by not going to a British uni! Thanks for reading
    (Also I am aware they're all going to be like normal students who enjoy having a good time, but I do still want to know a bit more)


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    I Lived in the US for 6 years and some of the friends I made are in Ivy League schools now (Princeton and Yale). And I'm sorry to tell you it's not like what you see in the movies. First of all, the drinking age is 21 and states in the north-east take this very seriously so you can indeed be kicked out of uni for drinking. Second, From my experience in the States I can tell you parties actually suck (on a general basis compared to England) because America has no where near the free spirits that England does, Except in certain areas like: San Fransisco, Boston and Miami.

    And lastly, One of my Pals goes to the University of Georgia which was ranked #1 American party school by Playboy magazine. And he said the parties there are nothing like what you see on American Pie so not even the stateside's finest can live up to the illusion that these silly movies have given the world.

    Nonetheless, the partying may be lamer but that doesn't mean you wont have as much, if not more fun in an American school. For example, American schools are crazy about sports so if your keen, you can make it into a NCAA team which will have its games shown on TV! Also, Car insurance and Fuel is a lot cheaper so if you have that dream of driving while in uni then the US is the place to be.


    In my opinion; none of the benefactors can outweigh the cost of American universities which is easily up to $40,000 per year which is around £25,000 and paying off loans after uni in America is actually a struggle whereas loans in the UK are like pocket change.
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    Thank you so much for your reply. I actually have been so set on going to the US and I have been preparing the SATs and extra-curriculars for a long time now. It sounds really pathetic but I'm put off now, which sounds very shallow of me... but I suppose it's because, at the moment I'm in secondary school and I've not been going to parties or anything so I can work hard and get into a top Ivy League school. My aim was to get into a good college and THEN go party. Oh dear....what a shame, I really thought it would be a bit more wild! Although I do realise what counts is my education. Hmmm.


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    I've chosen to work hard during secondary school so I can party during university but am I going to be let down if I go to America? I've heard SO many different things. This does seen quite a trivial question, but why not... Thanks for any replies!


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    (Original post by a_malik)
    I've chosen to work hard during secondary school so I can party during university but am I going to be let down if I go to America? I've heard SO many different things. This does seen quite a trivial question, but why not... Thanks for any replies!


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    First you have to be deemed worthy of joining a fraternity by carrying a chicken around with you.
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    Not as good as the UK! Bear in mind that drinking when you are under 21 is a criminal offence, for which you can be expelled and deported.

    You could try asking on College Confidential (US version of TSR) but of course any opinions will be from Americans who can't compare it to the UK. This is a country that has colleges where students aren't allowed to socialise in mixed groups, listen to certain types of music, kiss someone or watch a movie (Pensacola Christian College, amongst others)
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    I was U21 for a while when I was at uni in the US and I still drank like a fish.

    You can't go to bars very easily, but you can get older people to buy you beer and drink at home, or get to know someone in a frat and go to their frat parties - which ARE very much like the stuff you see on American Pie. At least the ones I went to were.

    If the UK is a 10/10 in terms of partying, I would give the US between 5/10 and 7/10 depending on where you go.
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    So for the parties where everyone just gets together and drinks? The red cups?! My dreams are crumbling!! Noooo!!
    Ah well.. Reconsidering (if my mum will allow me to do so). Also, what exactly is a 'frat'? I know it's some sort of group of students but any more than that?
    And thanks for your replies!


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    I've just finished my US applications, and I accept that the party scene will be pretty crap. They can't drink! Well, I mean they can but... Do you remember the parties you went to when you were 15? There was alcohol, but not much of it, people thought they were badass for drinking because try never had before, everyone was paranoid because they thougt they would get busted for it. I envisage it being something like that. Lucky for me, I'm on a gap year right now an have had plenty of partying here (managed to sneak into a few freshers events in September...) so I don't think I'll miss it much. Have as much fun as you can now OP, then you won't miss it later! If I do get a place though, I fully intend to party hard in my holidays back in the UK!
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    (Original post by a_malik)
    So for the parties where everyone just gets together and drinks? The red cups?! My dreams are crumbling!! Noooo!!
    Ah well.. Reconsidering (if my mum will allow me to do so). Also, what exactly is a 'frat'? I know it's some sort of group of students but any more than that?
    And thanks for your replies!


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    well the red cup drinking parties do exist but they're more common in grad students or juniors (3rd year) freshmen drink as well but not realy as often as it is infact illegal.

    Also, frat (fraternity) refers to a brotherhood of students in the same class (ie. class of 2015 or class of 2017). They ussually always party together and have a greek name, this name is commonly just the name of a greek letter (delta, sigma, gamma). In more historical schools such as the Ivy league, Fraternities are held in high regard by the dean and administrators as they have initiation tests that require all members to know a LOT about the history of their university, like when it was made, who founded it and so on.

    A common stereotype of a frat boy is someone who drives a senslessly big truck, talks really loud and thinks they're on top of the world. but in better universities, frat boys are well mannered, smart and social.

    You have probably also heard of sororities. these are the exact female equivilant.

    Sororities and Fraternities usually occur at a university for many generations, so it's common to see a guy at a fraternity in which his father, grandfather and father before him also were a part of.
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    (Original post by Lumos)
    I've just finished my US applications, and I accept that the party scene will be pretty crap. They can't drink!
    That depends entirely on where you go. Some campuses in the US are completely dry, and some enforce underage drinking laws. Others? As long as you're responsible, they really don't care how old you are or what you're drinking. My alma mater had free beer on tap during major campus events.

    Plenty of students at Penn, Dartmouth, and Duke (not an ivy) drink like fish. Dartmouth's unofficial mascot is a beer keg.

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    Columbia and Harvard are the most subdued of the Ivies. Cornell, Yale, Princeton, and Brown fall between the two pairs, with Brown definitely the most partyish of the four (look up SexPowerGod).


    As gijops said, though, even the "party schools" among the top American universities aren't as crazy as universities like Ohio U or WVU. Students at Ivies will go out Thursday and Friday nights, maybe a Saturday night sometimes. Party schools...they'll go out any night of the week.
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    (Original post by a_malik)
    So for the parties where everyone just gets together and drinks? The red cups?! My dreams are crumbling!! Noooo!!
    Ah well.. Reconsidering (if my mum will allow me to do so). Also, what exactly is a 'frat'? I know it's some sort of group of students but any more than that?
    And thanks for your replies!


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    OP why don't you go to a UK university that has an exchange program with a US university? This way you get to experience both lifestyles and it costs just the small matter of £100,000 less.
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    (Original post by py0alb)
    OP why don't you go to a UK university that has an exchange program with a US university? This way you get to experience both lifestyles and it costs just the small matter of £100,000 less.
    Many colleges offer financial aid to international students. Some are needs blind (Harvard, Yale, MIT, Princeton, Dartmouth, Amherst). The average financial aid package at Yale, for example, is $38,000. If your family income is $65,000 or less, you pay nothing. Not so bad.
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    (Original post by Lumos)
    Many colleges offer financial aid to international students. Some are needs blind (Harvard, Yale, MIT, Princeton, Dartmouth, Amherst). The average financial aid package at Yale, for example, is $38,000. If your family income is $65,000 or less, you pay nothing. Not so bad.
    Will still cost you a lot, especially when you consider that university in the UK is free at POS, and you get a fat grant, and you get a better degree.
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    (Original post by py0alb)
    Will still cost you a lot, especially when you consider that university in the UK is free at POS, and you get a fat grant, and you get a better degree.
    Well, suppose your family does earn £45k a year. In the UK that is the cut of point, you will receive no grants, ending up with a total debt of 50,000 for a three year course including living costs. However, in the US, if your family earns 45k a year, you pay no tuition fees. Consider also, that living costs, textbooks and food are included in the price of American universities. You would graduate after 4 years with no debt. Even if you only receive the average financial grant from a US university, it still works out cheaper.
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    (Original post by Lumos)
    Well, suppose your family does earn £45k a year. In the UK that is the cut of point, you will receive no grants, ending up with a total debt of 50,000 for a three year course including living costs. However, in the US, if your family earns 45k a year, you pay no tuition fees. Consider also, that living costs, textbooks and food are included in the price of American universities. You would graduate after 4 years with no debt. Even if you only receive the average financial grant from a US university, it still works out cheaper.
    a) its not debt, why can't people understand this.

    b) food, books and living costs are quite distinctly NOT included in the cost.

    I went to an American University.

    Most American Universities do not offer financial aid to overseas students.
    See here for the university I attended:
    http://www.virginia.edu/financialaid/eligible.php

    You're looking at dropping $60k a year. Thats £150k of real, actual debt, not paltry student fee payments that eventually get written off, real debt.

    http://www.virginia.edu/financialaid/estimated.php
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    (Original post by py0alb)
    a) its not debt, why can't people understand this.

    b) food, books and living costs are quite distinctly NOT included in the cost.

    I went to an American University.

    Most American Universities do not offer financial aid to overseas students.
    See here for the university I attended:
    http://www.virginia.edu/financialaid/eligible.php

    You're looking at dropping $60k a year. Thats £150k of real, actual debt, not paltry student fee payments that eventually get written off, real debt.

    http://www.virginia.edu/financialaid/estimated.php
    Sure, but I'm not applying to any universities that DON'T offer financial aid to international students. To do so would frankly be idiotic as I know how expensive tuition can be. From Yale's website:

    55% of students receive financial aid

    The average financial aid package for 2012 was $41,000

    The total cost of attendance at Yale in 2012-2013 is $58,600, which includes tuition ($42,300), room ($7,150), board ($5,850), and books and personal expenses ($3,300). Total cost of attendance (not just tuition) is used to calculate a student's need-based financial aid award.

    The majority of students pay $20,000 or less per year, equivalent to £14,000. That is less than I would pay to live and study in London per year (9000 tuition + 8000 living costs)

    I know the way the loans work, but if I earn over £21000 per year before I'm 30, and I hope I will, I WILL have to pay it back.
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    (Original post by Lumos)
    Sure, but I'm not applying to any universities that DON'T offer financial aid to international students. To do so would frankly be idiotic as I know how expensive tuition can be. From Yale's website:

    55% of students receive financial aid

    The average financial aid package for 2012 was $41,000

    The total cost of attendance at Yale in 2012-2013 is $58,600, which includes tuition ($42,300), room ($7,150), board ($5,850), and books and personal expenses ($3,300). Total cost of attendance (not just tuition) is used to calculate a student's need-based financial aid award.

    The majority of students pay $20,000 or less per year, equivalent to £14,000. That is less than I would pay to live and study in London per year (9000 tuition + 8000 living costs)

    I know the way the loans work, but if I earn over £21000 per year before I'm 30, and I hope I will, I WILL have to pay it back.
    You have to pay your student loan back at such a tiny rate you won't even notice.

    Do you know how to calculate the PV of a 30 year loan? According to the government website and some simple financial mathematics, here's the answer:

    Living in London your non means tested maintenance loan will be £4,898.

    That means you will be paying £3,102 per year over 4 years, plus the PV of the loan works out as £15k, so that makes a total net expenditure of £27k for 4 years at university.

    compared to £56k to go to the US.

    Still think its the better option?
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    (Original post by py0alb)
    You have to pay your student loan back at such a tiny rate you won't even notice.

    Do you know how to calculate the PV of a 30 year loan? According to the government website and some simple financial mathematics, here's the answer:

    Living in London your non means tested maintenance loan will be £4,898.

    That means you will be paying £3,102 per year over 4 years, plus the PV of the loan works out as £15k, so that makes a total net expenditure of £27k for 4 years at university.

    compared to £56k to go to the US.

    Still think its the better option?
    it doesn't matter how slowly I have to pay it back, I still have to pay it back! I don't know where you're getting 27k from? for 4 years with living costs of 8k/year it would work out to 32k on those costs alone.

    in total it's still £68000 to attend a london uni for 4 years, no matter how slowly you pay it back.
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    (Original post by Lumos)
    it doesn't matter how slowly I have to pay it back, I still have to pay it back! I don't know where you're getting 27k from? for 4 years with living costs of 8k/year it would work out to 32k on those costs alone.

    in total it's still £68000 to attend a london uni for 4 years, no matter how slowly you pay it back.
    Ah no, its £8,000 - the £4,898 maintenance loan = £3,102 per year, which is £12,408 in total for 4 years.

    You then have to pay back the loan once you start earning, but the Present Value of the entire sum you will have to pay back is £15,000.

    So the total amount it will cost you in today's money is £27k
 
 
 
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