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Middlebury vs. Carnegie Mellon: A Comprehensive Look 

By Eric Eng

By Eric Eng

Group of student working on a table.

Middlebury vs. Carnegie Mellon: A Comprehensive Look

Choosing the right university can be a daunting task, especially when deciding between two top-tier institutions like Middlebury and Carnegie Mellon. In this article, we will take a comprehensive look at Middlebury vs. Carnegie Mellon, comparing and contrasting various aspects to determine which university is the better choice.

Academic Programs: A Detailed Comparison of Middlebury and Carnegie Mellon

Middlebury College is a liberal arts college located in Middlebury, Vermont. The college has a strong academic reputation, and its graduates are highly valued in the job market. Middlebury offers undergraduate degrees in a variety of fields, ranging from political science and economics to environmental studies and languages.

Group of student working on a table.

When it comes to academic programs, there is a stark difference between Middlebury and Carnegie Mellon. While Middlebury is primarily a liberal arts college, Carnegie Mellon is known for its strong STEM programs. Carnegie Mellon offers undergraduate degrees in computer science, electrical engineering, computer engineering, robotics, and many other engineering fields. In addition, Carnegie Mellon has a highly regarded business school, the Tepper School of Business, which offers undergraduate and graduate programs in business and economics.

Despite the differences in their academic programs, both Middlebury and Carnegie Mellon offer a wide range of extracurricular activities for their students. Middlebury has a strong focus on outdoor activities, with opportunities for hiking, skiing, and other outdoor sports.

The college also has a vibrant arts scene, with a theater program and a museum of art. Carnegie Mellon, on the other hand, has a strong focus on technology and innovation, with many student organizations dedicated to robotics, coding, and entrepreneurship. The university also has a thriving performing arts scene, with a theater program and a school of music.

Another difference between Middlebury and Carnegie Mellon is their approach to research. Middlebury is primarily an undergraduate institution, and while it does have some research opportunities for students, research is not a major focus of the college.

Carnegie Mellon, on the other hand, is a major research university, with a strong emphasis on cutting-edge research in science, engineering, and technology. The university has many research centers and institutes, and undergraduate students have the opportunity to work on research projects with faculty members.

Student Life at Middlebury vs. Carnegie Mellon: Which is Better?

Student life is an essential aspect of the college experience, and both Middlebury and Carnegie Mellon have a lot to offer in this regard. Middlebury has a small campus and a close-knit community, which allows students to form strong connections with their peers and professors. There are many student-run organizations on campus, ranging from political clubs to a capella groups, and Middlebury has a thriving arts scene that showcases the talents of its students.

Carnegie Mellon, on the other hand, has a larger campus and a more diverse student body. The university has a strong focus on extracurricular activities, and there are over 250 student organizations on campus. Carnegie Mellon is also known for its strong athletics programs, with many of its sports teams competing at the Division III level. Furthermore, Carnegie Mellon has a robust arts community, with top-notch facilities for dance, music, and theater.

Another notable aspect of student life at Middlebury is the college’s commitment to sustainability. Middlebury has a long-standing reputation as a leader in environmental stewardship, and students are encouraged to get involved in sustainability initiatives on campus.

The college has a number of sustainability-focused clubs and organizations, and there are many opportunities for students to participate in sustainability-related research and projects. Middlebury also has a number of green buildings on campus, including the LEED Platinum-certified Franklin Environmental Center, which serves as a hub for sustainability education and outreach.

Admission Requirements: A Comparative Analysis of Middlebury and Carnegie Mellon

Admission to both Middlebury and Carnegie Mellon is highly competitive, and both have rigorous admission requirements. Students applying to Middlebury must submit their SAT or ACT scores, high school transcript, and essays. In addition, Middlebury offers optional interviews for applicants who wish to further showcase their skills and accomplishments.

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Carnegie Mellon also requires SAT or ACT scores, high school transcript, essays, and letters of recommendation. However, Carnegie Mellon also offers an optional creative portfolio submission for students interested in the School of Drama, School of Music, or School of Design.

It is important to note that both Middlebury and Carnegie Mellon have holistic admission processes, meaning that they consider a variety of factors beyond just test scores and grades. Both value extracurricular activities, community involvement, and leadership experience.

Additionally, Middlebury has a test-optional policy for applicants who feel that their standardized test scores do not accurately reflect their academic abilities. Carnegie Mellon also offers an early decision application option for students who are certain that they want to attend the university.

Faculty and Staff Comparison: Middlebury vs. Carnegie Mellon

Both Middlebury and Carnegie Mellon have world-class faculty and staff who are experts in their respective fields. Middlebury has a student-to-faculty ratio of 8:1, and 75% of its faculty members hold a Ph.D. or equivalent degree. Middlebury also offers personalized attention and support to its students, with faculty members serving as academic advisors and mentors.

Carnegie Mellon also has a highly qualified faculty, with over 1,450 full-time and part-time faculty members. The student-to-faculty ratio at Carnegie Mellon is 10:1, and the university has a strong emphasis on research. Carnegie Mellon faculty members are actively engaged in cutting-edge research and frequently collaborate with industry and government partners.

One of the unique features of Middlebury’s faculty is their commitment to sustainability and environmentalism. Many faculty members are involved in research and initiatives related to sustainability, and the college has a strong focus on environmental studies. Additionally, Middlebury has a robust language program, with faculty members who are experts in a wide range of languages and cultures.

Carnegie Mellon is known for its interdisciplinary approach to education, with faculty members who are experts in fields ranging from computer science to drama. The university also has a strong commitment to diversity and inclusion, with initiatives and programs aimed at promoting equity and access for all students and faculty members.

Research Opportunities: A Comprehensive Look at Middlebury vs. Carnegie Mellon

Research opportunities are crucial for students who wish to pursue graduate or professional studies. Middlebury College’s research opportunities primarily focus on undergraduate research, and the college offers a variety of programs and resources to support students in their research endeavors. Middlebury has a dedicated Office of Undergraduate Research, as well as several research centers and programs, such as the Middlebury Institute of International Studies and the Environmental Studies Program.

Carnegie Mellon offers extensive research opportunities for both undergraduate and graduate students. The university is home to several research centers and institutes, including the Robotics Institute, the Software Engineering Institute, and the Carnegie Mellon CyLab. Carnegie Mellon also has a strong emphasis on interdisciplinary research, with many research projects spanning multiple fields and departments.

2 female students studying inside a library

Both Middlebury and Carnegie Mellon offer students the opportunity to work closely with faculty members on research projects. Middlebury’s faculty members are actively engaged in research and often involve students in their work. Carnegie Mellon’s faculty members are leaders in their respective fields and are involved in cutting-edge research projects. Additionally, both institutions offer funding opportunities for students to pursue their research interests, including grants, fellowships, and scholarships.

Cost of Attendance: A Financial Comparison of Middlebury vs. Carnegie Mellon

Attending a top-tier university can come with a hefty price tag, and both Middlebury and Carnegie Mellon are no exception. Middlebury’s tuition and fees for the 2021-2022 academic year are approximately $73,000, and the total cost of attendance, including room and board, books, supplies, and personal expenses, is estimated to be around $98,000.

Carnegie Mellon’s tuition and fees for the same academic year are approximately $58,000, and the estimated total cost of attendance is around $80,000. However, it’s important to note that tuition costs can vary based on the program and degree level, and financial aid and scholarships are available at both Middlebury and Carnegie Mellon.

It’s also worth considering the potential return on investment when comparing the cost of attendance at Middlebury and Carnegie Mellon. According to PayScale’s 2021 College ROI Report, Carnegie Mellon ranks #4 in the nation for best return on investment, with a 20-year net ROI of $1,057,000. Middlebury, on the other hand, ranks #47 with a 20-year net ROI of $719,000. While cost is an important factor to consider when choosing a university, it’s also important to weigh the potential long-term benefits of your investment.

Student Outcomes: Which Produces Better Graduates?

Ultimately, the value of a university education lies in its ability to prepare students for successful careers and meaningful lives. Both Middlebury and Carnegie Mellon have a strong track record of producing successful graduates.

According to the Middlebury College Outcomes Survey, 96% of Middlebury graduates are employed, in graduate school, or pursuing other activities within six months of graduation. Similarly, the Carnegie Mellon Career and Professional Development Center reports that 95% of Carnegie Mellon graduates secured employment or were admitted to graduate school within six months of graduation.

However, it is important to note that success can be measured in different ways. While employment and graduate school admission rates are important indicators of success, they do not necessarily reflect the full range of outcomes that a university education can provide. For example, Middlebury College emphasizes the importance of community engagement and social responsibility, and many Middlebury graduates go on to work in non-profit organizations or pursue careers in public service.

On the other hand, Carnegie Mellon is known for its strong focus on innovation and entrepreneurship, and many graduates go on to start their own businesses or work in the tech industry. In fact, according to a recent survey by PayScale, Carnegie Mellon graduates have the highest mid-career salary of any university in the United States.

Extracurricular Activities: A Comparison of the Student Organizations at Middlebury and Carnegie Mellon

Extracurricular activities can provide valuable opportunities for students to pursue their interests and develop their skills. Middlebury has over 150 student-run organizations, ranging from political clubs to a capella groups, and the college has a thriving arts scene that showcases the talents of its students.

Carnegie Mellon has over 250 student organizations on campus, and the university has a strong focus on extracurricular activities. Carnegie Mellon is also known for its strong athletics programs, with many of its sports teams competing at the Division III level. Furthermore, Carnegie Mellon has a robust arts community, with top-notch facilities for dance, music, and theater.

One notable difference between the extracurricular activities at Middlebury and Carnegie Mellon is the emphasis on entrepreneurship. Carnegie Mellon has a number of student organizations dedicated to entrepreneurship, such as the VentureBridge Entrepreneurship Club and the Carnegie Mellon Entrepreneurship Association. These organizations provide students with resources and support to start their own businesses and pursue their entrepreneurial goals.

Another difference is the availability of research opportunities. Carnegie Mellon is a research-focused university, and many of its student organizations are involved in research projects. Students have the opportunity to work with faculty members on cutting-edge research in fields such as computer science, engineering, and psychology. Middlebury also has research opportunities available, but they may not be as extensive as those at Carnegie Mellon.

Career Services: Which Offers Better Support for Students’ Professional Goals?

Both Middlebury and Carnegie Mellon offer comprehensive career services to their students, with resources ranging from resume workshops to networking events and job fairs. Middlebury’s Career Services Center offers one-on-one advising and counseling, as well as internship and job search tools and resources. Similarly, Carnegie Mellon’s Career and Professional Development Center provides career counseling and coaching, employer connections and customized resources.

A woman talking in front of a group of people.

However, there are some differences between the two institution’s career services. Middlebury’s Career Services Center has a strong focus on helping students find opportunities in the non-profit and public service sectors, with specialized advising and resources for these fields.

On the other hand, Carnegie Mellon’s Career and Professional Development Center has a strong emphasis on technology and innovation, with resources and connections to help students pursue careers in fields such as computer science and engineering.

Additionally, Middlebury’s Career Services Center offers a variety of career-related events throughout the year, including career fairs, employer information sessions, and alumni networking events. Carnegie Mellon’s Career and Professional Development Center also hosts similar events, but places a particular emphasis on connecting students with employers in the tech industry through events such as the annual Tech Expo.

Diversity & Inclusion: How does Middlebury vs. Carnegie Mellon Compare in Terms of Representation?

Diversity and inclusion are critical components of the university experience, and both Middlebury and Carnegie Mellon are committed to fostering a welcoming and inclusive environment for all students. Middlebury has made significant progress in recent years in increasing the diversity of its student body and faculty.

It has also implemented numerous initiatives to promote inclusivity and social justice on campus, including the Social Entrepreneurship Program, the Queer Studies Program, and the Office of Institutional Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (IDEI).

Carnegie Mellon has a strong commitment to diversity and inclusion, and the university has numerous programs and initiatives dedicated to promoting multiculturalism and inclusivity. The Office of Diversity and Inclusion at Carnegie Mellon offers a wide range of resources and support for underrepresented groups, such as the Black Graduate Student Association, the Women@SCS Program, and the LGBTQ+ at CMU group.

Despite the efforts of both, there is still work to be done in terms of representation. Middlebury has acknowledged that it needs to do more to increase the number of students and faculty from underrepresented groups, particularly in STEM fields.

To address this, the university has launched the MiddAction program, which provides funding and support for students from diverse backgrounds who are interested in pursuing careers in science, technology, engineering, and math.

Carnegie Mellon has also recognized the need to improve representation in STEM fields, and has implemented several initiatives to address this issue. The university has established the Women@SCS Scholarship, which provides financial support for women pursuing degrees in computer science, and has also launched the Diversity and Inclusion in Artificial Intelligence (DIAI) program, which aims to increase diversity in the field of AI.

Alumni Network & Connections: A Look into the Impact of Graduating from Middlebury or Carnegie Mellon

Alumni networks are essential for students who are looking to build strong connections and advance their careers. Middlebury College has a strong and active alumni network, with over 31,000 alumni living around the world. Middlebury alumni have gone on to pursue successful careers in a variety of fields, including business, law, medicine, and the arts.

Two woman talking in a table.

Carnegie Mellon has a large and active alumni network, with over 120,000 alumni living in more than 140 countries. Carnegie Mellon alumni have made significant contributions to the fields of science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics. Many Carnegie Mellon alumni are leaders in their industries and have founded successful startups and organizations.

Both Middlebury and Carnegie Mellon offer various resources and opportunities for their alumni to stay connected and engaged with their respective communities. Middlebury’s alumni network provides career services, mentorship programs, and networking events to help alumni connect with each other and with current students. Carnegie Mellon’s alumni network offers similar resources, as well as opportunities for alumni to give back to the university through volunteering and philanthropy.

Rankings & Reputation: A Comparison Between Middlebury vs. Carnegie Mellon

Both Middlebury and Carnegie Mellon are highly regarded institutions with impressive rankings and reputations. Middlebury is consistently ranked among the top liberal arts colleges in the country by US News and World Report, while Carnegie Mellon is ranked among the top research universities in the world.

In addition, both Middlebury and Carnegie Mellon have a strong reputation for academic excellence, innovation, and social impact. Graduating from either university can open many doors and provide students with countless opportunities for personal and professional growth.

However, there are some notable differences between the two. Middlebury has a smaller student body and a more intimate campus setting, which allows for closer relationships between students and faculty. On the other hand, Carnegie Mellon has a larger and more diverse student body, with a wider range of academic programs and research opportunities.

Final Verdict between Middlebury vs. Carnegie Mellon

After a comprehensive comparison of Middlebury and Carnegie Mellon, it’s clear that both have a lot to offer in terms of academics, student life, career services, diversity and inclusion, alumni networks, and reputation. Ultimately, the choice between Middlebury and Carnegie Mellon comes down to personal preferences and priorities.

Students who are interested in pursuing a liberal arts education and prefer a small, close-knit community may find Middlebury to be the better choice. On the other hand, students who are interested in STEM fields and prefer a larger, more diverse campus may find Carnegie Mellon to be a better fit.

Regardless of which university students choose, they can be sure that they will receive a world-class education and be well-prepared for success in their respective fields.

It’s worth noting that both Middlebury and Carnegie Mellon have strong extracurricular programs that offer students a variety of opportunities to get involved on campus and in the community. Middlebury has a thriving arts scene, with numerous student-run theater productions, music ensembles, and art exhibitions throughout the year. Carnegie Mellon, on the other hand, is known for its strong athletics program, with competitive teams in a variety of sports.

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