Is this an oxymoron?
No! You need a good safety school, so that when you don't get into Harvard you still have somewhere with a nice dining hall and a hot student body to go. Carelessly pick safety schools you don't really want can leave you in a sorry state around April-May of your senior year in high school.
Here's the list:
1) Rutgers- Ahh Rutgers, located in the Garden State of New Jersey. Their new students have average 2100 on the SAT, and sadly that means nothing when you get to college. Rutgers has outstanding programs in areas of medicine and bio-medical engineering, and their three separate campus make it easy to get over to the Shore.
2) JMU - Almost 20k students, 109 degree programs, and a very reasonable out-of-state tuition (around $10k) make this an attractive university to attend. We hear they have an overly large percentage of good-looking females. Good work James.
3) University of Michigan - They're good at football, or were, or whatever we don't watch football. Trojans? Nice. U Mich has an excellent hospitality program, as well as thousands of other areas of study. It's a big school because people enjoying coming back.
4) Skidmore - They seem to have a thing for horses, which we don't mind. Senate majority leader Joseph L. Bruno, Glee character Zach Weinstein, and members of electronic group RATATAT all went here. Very chill school.
5) Bucknell - Seeking to become a legit "nell", this one boasts beautiful architecture and season changes, but not the prettiest study body. Their graduation ceremony looked a bit empty...
6) Arizona State - It'll be hot, but if you're from Minnesota and need a change then go become a Sun Devil. They offer a degree in "Sustainability", pretty cutting edge we dare say.
7) Bard - Strong in liberal arts and sciences, Bard chills out in the Hudson Valley just a stones throw from New York City. 2% more females than males in among their roughly 1600 students, and more rapping talent than your average liberal arts school.
8) American University - Located in Washington D.C, they have a great women's basketball team and passionate programs for community service. Is it a coincidence their school colors are red, blue, and white?
9) Northeastern University - Known for savvy internship programs, this one might not even be a backup at all. Boston all the way, go here and be part of a booming social scene. But Harvard still won't hang out with you.
10) Tufts University - They mention GPA cutoffs for applicants on the campus tour, not exactly a plus. You'd be better off going to BU.
What are your thoughts? Lets hear it in the comments.
Greg Narayan got an Economics degree from Cornell University in 2010 and loves playing ping-pong. He's really good. Check out more of his writing on selecting good safety schools at his own blog, Honest College.