Stop Two, Day One: Union College, a small liberal arts school on the green edge of urban Schenectady, NY, is beyond any category : you have to experience it yourself.
Famed for its Engineering Program and rated #5 for top STEM programs for women by USA Today and College Guide, Union believes in the power of a liberal arts education to create intuitive graduates with the wider focus necessary to tackle tomorrow's questions. US News places it in the top 40 of National Liberal Arts Colleges, Money Magazine ranks it in the top 20 for earning the most in LACS, Payscale ranks it the 10th best college value, and Princeton Review ranks it #17 for Best Alumni Network.
Union runs on a trimester schedule (https://www.union.edu/admissions/trimesters/about/) Trimesters allow more time off between Thanksgiving and New Year's than a traditional schedule, and classes end in early June. This allows students to do more, try more, and double major more (75% do).
The Arts and Sciences truly intersect at Union. Classes such as The Illustrated Organism (studio fine arts and biology), and facilities such as the Phasor Lab, a professional-grade engineering and music studio, integrate the two. No audition is required to participate in theatre, and students can enjoy a miniterm in Paris or a full term in Florence. Three floors of Visual Arts in the Feigenbaum Center and an in-depth program at the Taylor Music Center offers World Music and Arts as well as Music Technology and other standard music disciplines. Students can minor in Dance, coupled with diverse majors.
The robust Engineering Program features Biomedical, Computer, Electrical, Environmental, and Mechanical Engineering. Our presentation was so effective that I finally understood what students learn and do with each of these disciplines after college!
Students at Union connect and socialize with their professors as well as enjoy Greek life-40% go Greek and participate in over 100 clubs. Union may be small, but it's never boring. Some travel to Australia and New Zealand to do research, and many take part in Princeton Review's #6-ranked most popular Study Abroad program.
The students I met were very social, comfortable with each other and adults. At dinner, we were treated to an a capela performance of "Riptide" smart conversation, and laughs. Union students are hard workers who appreciate an academic/social balance-they are proof that knowledge is the product of a logic and creativity.