Menu
Jump to content

What's with the ads?

Riverland

University of Alabama in Huntsville

Recommended Posts

In the class acceptance thread, there was a request for a UAH thread. Since my son is graduating from there this May with an Electrical Engineering degree, I figured I would go ahead and answer some of the questions.

 

I was unaware of this school until this year when I saw so much talk here and at CollegeConfidential.  Now that my son has been admitted with free tuition, he is curious about it.  If you ever have time to share, please consider starting a thread to tell us about the place.  Are many of the students living at home?  Is it a suitcase school?  How do you find the culture there, if your family is not from the South?

 

My son is friends with several local students, but none of them live at home. Up until last year they lived in the dorms, but now most of them live off-campus in apartments because the school ran out of dorm space due to its growth. I believe a new dorm will be finished by next fall. 

 

When we were looking at schools, he was not at all concerned that it was supposed to be a suitcase school. However, that has definitely not been the case. It wouldn't even be possible in his friend group. They are from all over the United States, including Alaska, Washington, California, Maryland, Illinois ... I suspect many of them were drawn there for the same reasons as my son. They initially looked at UA because of their scholarships and didn't like it. 

 

The culture question is a little bit harder for me because that's not really the type of thing my son talks about. I do know that many of his friends are involved in Christian groups on campus, but that's the type of friends he had in high school too. Politically, my guess is it's probably middle of the road. We are not from the south. I think the school is a great place.

 

The opportunities he's had are phenomenal. I would say that he is a big fish in a small pond, because he has the scores, intelligence and drive to succeed at any top school, but there are a lot of students at UAH that fit that description. We chose it for the great merit aid and engineering opportunities in Huntsville, as did his entire friend group.

 

Since he started his freshman year with two full years of dual enrollment, he only needed 3 years at UAH. In that time he has been a Teaching Assistant for an engineering class for a year and a Research Assistant for a year. He had a great internship in town his first summer and an REU his second summer. He has batted away many other offers of internships, both local, and across the country because he couldn't possibly do them all. 

 

Along the way he decided that he wanted to get his PhD directly after his bachelors and has been admitted to several top 10 electrical engineering programs. He is now deciding which one he wants. 

 

We have not had a single bad interaction with that school. It is full of wonderful, caring administrators and professors. Perhaps that plays into the culture question. Of course some professors are better than others, but you'll have that anywhere. My son is a bit different in that generally he likes the hardest professors best because he likes to be challenged, so RMP wasn't that accurate for him. I've also been impressed at how good they are with scheduling. If a class is full - they open another section or move rooms around in order to fit everyone.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Like 11

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Shh!!! I'm afraid they will become so popular that they will reduce their awesome scholarships by the time my STEM kid is ready for college.

 

Just kidding, mostly ;) I am looking forward to checking UAH out with my next kid.

  • Like 9

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We toured last week - precisely for the same reasons you mentioned. It's not dd's number 1, but it's definitely on the list. The tour guide mentioned 30% of the students were engineering majors, and 20% science. I think their policy of cherry picking smart kids with great scholarships is super smart and it'll be interesting to see where it lands them in 15 years.

  • Like 6

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We toured last week - precisely for the same reasons you mentioned. It's not dd's number 1, but it's definitely on the list. The tour guide mentioned 30% of the students were engineering majors, and 20% science. I think their policy of cherry picking smart kids with great scholarships is super smart and it'll be interesting to see where it lands them in 15 years.

It wasn't initially ds's number one either. He and his dad flew in to visit UA and decided that they might as well see UAH too. They both hated UA but loved UAH. UA rolled out the red carpet, but UAH had a lot more substance. At that point they didn't even bother to visit the other schools on his list, especially since none of them were local to us.

 

I better add - I know lots of people have found UA to be a great fit for them and with plenty of substance and opportunities! No disrespect intended. This was their impressions from their tour and personal meetings.

Edited by NotEnoughTime
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Shh!!! I'm afraid they will become so popular that they will reduce their awesome scholarships by the time my STEM kid is ready for college.

 

Just kidding, mostly ;) I am looking forward to checking UAH out with my next kid.

I know, right!  UA reduced theirs, so it is certainly possible UAH will too. Here's hoping they don't!

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I love Huntsville. When we visited the university, Dd loved the size and all of the opportunities for internships. For a family seeking merit $$, it is absolutely a school I would pursue if they offer the major your student wants.

 

ETA: fwiw, this Dd also strongly disliked UA. But, UA has been an absolutely wonderful school for her brother and has offered him ample opportunities. He is graduating in May with their Distinguishing Undergraduate Scholar designation. He loves UA. Every student has their own ideas about what they want in a school. He equally disliked Auburn. ;)

Edited by 8FillTheHeart
  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

DS#2 is a freshman electrical engineering major.  One of the big draws for my son was the individual rooms within a suite of 4 rooms, with common living space.  Coming from a big family where he had never not shared a room, this was huge!  Of his 3 suitemates, one is fairly local, the second is from Alabama but not close to Huntsville, and the third is from Memphis.  DS has made friends with people from all over, however.  I have heard from friends we have in Huntsville that around 10 years ago (I think it was?), the school started making a big push to not just be a commuter school.  It doesn't have a commuter school feel to my son, anyway, and he has found plenty of things to do (and people to do them with!) on the weekends, so definitely not everyone is heading home.

 

As far as the culture goes, we are comfortable there.  We were given an assignment to Huntsville back in 2004 that we ended up turning down to come to northern VA, and we had looked at the area and liked it a lot.  To me, it doesn't feel as "southern" as maybe Montgomery.  There are a TON of military there, both active duty and retired, so I think that gives a different feel to the city.  We have several friends who are retired (military) that live there, which has been nice for us, since we know there are people close by for DS if he ever needed them, since we definitely are not!  DS is involved in Reformed University Fellowship and has found a church he likes (because someone struck up a conversation with him at a meal, and it turns out this guy had also been homeschooled and was from a larger family, and he offered to give DS a ride to his church each week--DS doesn't have a car, so he had been limited to just trying bigger churches that sent a van each week, but he really wanted a smaller church).  But he has many friends who do not go to church or do anything religious as well.

 

There are a lot of great extra-curricular opportunities.  Ds has gotten involved with the Space Hardware Club, and he is having a lot of fun with that (and putting in some serious time--he pulled his first all-nighter preparing a rocket for launch last semester!)  He is very excited about all the internship/fellowship/co-op opportunities nearby.  He didn't apply for anything this summer, because he wants to work at a military Christian conference/retreat center, but he definitely plans to next year.

 

It's been a really great fit for DS.  He did not want to be at what he termed a "pretentious" school (UVa, etc.)--and he also did not want to follow his brother to VA Tech to be in the Corps, on an ROTC scholarship, also as an electrical engineering major.  He wanted to forge his own path.  His classes have been challenging enough, but he's done well so far and enjoyed them.  And we could afford it, so yay!   :laugh:

 

 

  • Like 5

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My dd is in her second year there, NOT for engineering, lol (majors in my signature). If you are an engineering major, you will have plenty of opportunities for jobs and internships. 

 

Definitely there are a fair number of commuters, but plenty in residence also. They just built a new dorm, which I think has some shared rooms as well as the singles. She loves having her own room but they are tiny, a lot of the space goes to the common area. It's been fine, but she's glad to be moving into a studio next semester.

 

There is always plenty to do on campus - they have a nice cinema where students can see a free (recent) movie every week, interesting speakers, lots of clubs and organizations. 

 

The campus is not diverse. It's about 75% white and 25% everything else, including international students. It was immediately noticeable to dd, who is white but comes from a diverse city where  we're used to seeing different customs, hearing various languages, and so on. She hasn't seen any racial prejudice, it's just . . . very white, lol. And very Christian. dd had a few bumps in the road with new friends being shocked that she didn't share the same beliefs or lifestyle, but it smoothed over eventually. 

 

Super friendly, super polite campus. We find that true for the city as well. 

 

No cheap or direct flights for us, and the train station is an hour and a half away, so that's a pain. 

 

UA is also an excellent school, but dd went to summer honors academy there, and said, "If I hear Roll Tide! one more time . . . "

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I went to UAH (but didn’t graduate from there). I live in Huntsville and would be happy to answer any City related questions.

 

It’s a city of mainly transplants. Upon meeting someone, it’s customary to ask where they are from, because almost no one is from around here. I was actually born here, but my parents are from Silicon Valley. They moved here because my father was a rocket scientist before he retired.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I went to UAH (but didn’t graduate from there). I live in Huntsville and would be happy to answer any City related questions.

 

It’s a city of mainly transplants. Upon meeting someone, it’s customary to ask where they are from, because almost no one is from around here. I was actually born here, but my parents are from Silicon Valley. They moved here because my father was a rocket scientist before he retired.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What is the GPA requirement for retaining the big merit scholarship?

 

https://www.uah.edu/admissions/undergraduate/financial-aid/scholarships/merit-tuition-scholarships

 

Renewal Criteria. Merit tuition scholarships are renewable for up to three additional consecutive years, for a total award of up to eight semesters. Renewal is contingent upon meeting the following requirements:
 
Maintain a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 3.0;
Earn a minimum of 24 credit hours per academic year;
Enroll full-time each consecutive fall and spring term and;
Be enrolled at the undergraduate level
Renewal eligibility will be evaluated at the end of each Spring term.
  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am so grateful to this board and you all for posting this! Ds's application was filled out the day after you recommended it and I was just able to mail out his transcript and have his test scores sent. I had never heard of this college and he said it looks great! Fingers crossed!!!


  • Like 14

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Heather, we heard by email from UAH just a few days after sending our documents.  We had sent scores a while before.

My son is hoping to be admitted by a dream school but is really intrigued by Huntsville and wants to check it out.

 

Thank you, NotEnoughTime, for starting this thread.

 

 

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×
×
  • Create New...