I have a student, an aspiring mechanical engineer, who was accepted to several top ranked programs, one of which was Virginia Tech. Of his choices, Virginia will probably offer him the best overall experience for his interests, disposition and academic motivation, yet he has his heart set on another institution, albeit prestigious, but not nearly as strong in his field of choice. In all my time working with him, the Virginia Tech shootings never came up with him or his parents, but the other day, I found myself telling a friend, “I would never send my kid to Virginia Tech”.
That of course is a very naive remark. Though Virginia has been made headlines for the tragic events on campus, if I’m honest, shootings really can happen anywhere. (Take Oikos Unversity, just recently – even a small, Christian university isn’t exempt). So the question for college bound students really is, to what extent do you consider factors, like school shootings or other safety issues, when your child is choosing a college?