2012-13 Edition First Impressions: Fordham University

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2012-13 EditionFirst Impressions:Fordham UniversityEducated Quest.com

Background1Introduction to FordhamUniversity

BackgroundFordham University was originally founded as St. John’s College in 1841, the first Catholic institution of higher education inthe Northeastern U.S. The college was renamed Fordham University in 1907. The name Fordham is derived from the AngloSaxon words “ford” and “ham,” meaning a wading place or fordby a settlement, according to the University’s history. The University’s Bronx campus, also known as Rose Hill, is located in aneighborhood that was once known as Fordham Village. Fordham is one of 28 Jesuit colleges and universities in the U.S andone of 11 in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states. Fordham isalso the only Jesuit college or university to have more than onefully functioning campus for undergraduate, graduate and professional students. It was also the first Jesuit university to begranted a chapter of Phi Beta Kappa, the national academichonor society.Fordham has approximately 7,200 undergraduates. About5,700 are enrolled on the main campus at Rose Hill; the remainder are students at the Lincoln Center campus in Manhattan.Fordham students may take classes at either campus, althoughthey must take 60 percent of their classes at the one wherethey are enrolled. Among Jesuit universities in the Northeastand Mid-Atlantic states only Boston College has more undergraduates than Fordham. Fordham has a larger undergraduatestudent population than Georgetown, Loyola University of Mary2

land and St. Joseph’s University (PA), which also Jesuit institutions.Studies will be offered at Lincoln Center as will new majors inHumanitarian Studies and Integrative Neuroscience.Until this year Fordham has been divided into three schools, theliberal arts schools on each campus (each called Fordham College) as well as the Gabelli School of Business on the Rose HillCampus. The University’s honors program is also available onboth campuses. This year the business school will offer newprograms in Manhattan. More than a quarter of Fordham undergraduates major in a business discipline. The Manhattan campus offers a highly competitive talent-based Dance major in partnership with the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater and will offer a highly competitive Theatre major this year.Unlike larger public and private universities, Fordham makes iteasy for students to carry double majors in a business discipline and the liberal arts or to carry a major within one schooland a minor in the other.Unlike other Jesuit schools in the Northeast and MidAtlantic region as Catholic universities such as Villanova, Fordham doesnot offer undergraduate programs in areas such as Engineering, Education and Nursing. The University has, however,added unique majors within its undergraduate schools includingInternational Political Economy on the Rose Hill campus andNew Media and Digital Design on the Lincoln Center campus.Within the business school there are four options within Accounting alone as well as primary concentrations in Digital Media and Technology, Global Finance and Business Economics,Management/Health Care and Marketing/Consumer Insight, alloffered at Lincoln Center. This year a new minor in FashionAlthough Fordham markets itself as “New York’s Jesuit University,” less than 40 percent of the undergraduate student bodycomes from New York State while less than half of these students come from the Big Apple. More than half of the undergraduates at Rose Hill live on campus; an additional 400 bedswill be available at Lincoln Center for the coming school year.Notable Fordham alumni include legendary football coachVince Lombardi; authors Mary Higgins Clark and Don DeLillo;John Mara, President, COO and co-owner of the NFL NewYork Giants; Ann Mulcahy, retired chairwoman and CEO ofXerox, and actor Alan Alda, among many others.3

Competition2What does it take to get in?Who decides to go?What other schools doapplicants consider?

CompetitionApplications for a place in the freshman class at Fordham have skyrocketed from approximately 4,000 during the 1980’s to more than 36,000 for the class that entered in2013. Fordham uses a holistic review to consider each applicant that includes theacademic record and rigor of the courses s/he has attempted (especially if they relate to a student’s intended major), intellectual curiosity, an understanding of their surroundings (aka: their world,), leadership experience, perseverance and ethical behavior. A freshman class will typically have 2,000 students. Admissions to Fordham are“need blind.” Financial need is not considered in admissions decisions, except forstudents who are on the wait list.Math scores from the ACT and SAT are considered more seriously for prospectivebusiness and science majors, critical reading and writing skills are considered moreseriously for liberal arts majors. Fordham is one of the few schools that will lookclosely at the Writing scores on the ACT or SAT. The admissions staff will take thehighest scores from each section of the test.The range for the middle 50 percent of SAT scores among admitted students wasbetween 1830 (average of 610 per section for Critical Reading, Math and Writing)and 2040 (average of 680 per section). The range is lower than for schools such asBoston College, Georgetown and Villanova, among the religiously-affiliated schoolsthat applicants consider most often. It is also lower than the range for NYU and Columbia as well as Boston University and Northeastern University. Public institutionsfrequently cross-shopped with Fordham include Binghamton University, Penn Stateand Rutgers University-New Brunswick.Fordham does not offer early decision, but it does offer non-binding admissionsthrough Early Action as well as Prior Performance Admission for Dance and Theatremajors. The deadline for both is November 1st. Deadline for regular admission is December 1st. Those who qualify for the larger merit awards would be wise to applyearly.5

Costs3Tuition and FeesScholarshipsDebt

CostsA Fordham education is not cheap. Tuition and fees for 2014-15will be approximately 45,500; room and board charges willrange between around 16,000 and 16,700, depending on thecampus, housing and meal plan selected. The University estimates that the Total Cost of Attendance will be between 65,200 and 65,900 for a student living on campus, includingbooks, transportation, clothing and entertainment; it’s likely tobe higher given the attractions of New York City for college students. Fordham requires the FAFSA and CSS Profile for consideration for financial aid. Students with superior academic records as well as a serious interest in Fordham would be wise toapply early action to be considered for the larger scholarshipawards.Students in the top one-to-two percent of the entering class receive full-tuition awards either for being National Merit, NationalAchievement or National Hispanic Recognition ScholarshipSemi-Finalists or by being selected by the University as Presidential Scholars. The Presidential Scholarship also includesfree housing for four years. Fordham also offers athletic scholarships; the University competes in 23 Division I sports, includingfootball. Air Force, Army and Navy ROTC are also available oncampus. The University also awards Dean’s Scholarships to students within the first tenth of the class that begin at 10,000;the awards increase on the basis of demonstrated financial7

need. Commuting New Yorkers are eligible for Metro Grants valued at 6,000 per year.Student indebtedness information was not available from theProject on Student Debt nor Big Future, the College Board’ssearch site. But it is fair to state that scholarship awards will notreduce the costs of a Fordham education for most students tothe in-state or out-of-state costs for students at schools such asBinghamton, Penn State or Rutgers. However, the student whois in the top ten percent of the class may fare better cost-wisethan their peers at Boston College, Boston University, Georgetown, Northeastern, NYU or Villanova, all of which charge moreand none of which admit that they will meet the full financialneed for all of their students.versity and NYU; classes are smaller, there is less reliance ondoctoral students to teach, even in the introductory classes. Academic programs are more accessible to those who performwell, but enter undecided on a major. But Fordham also sharesthe advantage of connections into a city with a diverse and dynamic economy with these schools. The very best students atFordham appear to get more for less --as long as the social fitis also there.As of June 30, 2013, Fordham had an endowment of 592 million, according to the National Association of College and University Business Officers, larger than Villanova ( 419 million),but considerably smaller than Boston College ( 1.8 billion), Boston University ( 1.4 billion), Georgetown ( 1.3 billion), Northeastern ( 617 million) and NYU ( 2.9 billion). The endowmentsof these considered schools are much larger, in part, becausethey operate medical and/or dental schools as well as undergraduate and graduate programs in fields such as engineeringand nursing that not offered by Fordham.Fordham offers proven value relative to state-supportedschools and the larger research universities such as Boston Uni8

Comforts4On-Campus HousingLocal Housing Market

ComfortsFordham guarantees housing for four years to all students, as long asthey started living in on-campus housing during their freshman year.Commuters can change their status to on-campus as space becomesavailable. Eighty percent of Fordham undergraduates will live on campusor in an off-campus building affiliated with the University for all fouryears. All students have the option of living on campus during the summer.Fordham has five freshman residence halls at Rose Hill, a sixth, Loyola,a former residence for Jesuit priests, will open this year as an IntegratedLearning Community. All of the freshman halls, excluding Loyola, areclustered together. Three are air conditioned, the others are not. Laundryis included in the room charge; there’s no need to use a student ID norhave quarters. While there are no single-sex freshman halls, the firstfloors are all-male, second floors are all female while the higher floorsare have all-male and all-female wings. Freshman halls are corridorstyle; several double (and sometimes triple) rooms share a commonbathroom and showers. Loyola Hall will have no triple rooms.Students assigned to triples at Rose Hill at the start of the school yearcan request to de-triple as space becomes available. They will receive areduction on their housing bill based on the number of days they weretripled. One consideration: living in a triple room can reduce housingcosts by approximately 2,500 to 2,700 a year, depending on the hallselected.Fordham offers a choice of Unlimited, Block Plus and Block Meal Plansat Rose Hill. Block Plus and Block plans are priced around blocks of 150,175 and 200 meals per semester at the dining hall as well as decliningbalances for cafes and grab-and-go locations on campus. Block and10

Block Plus plans cost will cost approximately 5,000 for the comingschool year. Unlimited plans will cost around 6,000 or 6,100 depending on the declining balance selected. Students who live in residencehalls on the Rose Hill campus: Alumni Court South, Loschert Hall,Hughes Hall, Queen’s Court, Tierney, Martyr’s Court, Finlay, and O’HareHall, are required to purchase a meal plan, although they may chooseany plan they want.Upper-class students at Rose Hill have an impressive choice of corridorstyle, suite-style and apartment living options. The best value isapartment-style living; the meal plan is not required while its easy toshop for food in the surrounding neighborhood. Students at Rose Hillwho live off campus in unaffiliated housing typically live within five blockswalking distance of campus. Two-bedroom apartments will rent foraround 1,500 a month, plus security deposit, brokers fee and utilities.The university-affiliated housing is a better deal; you don’t pay the deposit or the fees. Fordham has no fraternities or sororities.New Hall and McMahon Hall, the residence for upper-class, graduateand law students are located in a very posh section of Manhattan; rentals for one-bedroom apartments in the surrounding area can easily surpass 3,000 a month. It is easy to say that on-campus living is the bettervalue for Fordham students at Lincoln Center.Since there is overlap among most majors at Fordham and living costsdo not vary by much, it is wise to consider which campus to enroll, Lincoln Center or Rose Hill, when you have the option to live at either one.Rose Hill will offer more of the campus life that a student might expect tofind at a more suburban residential college Lincoln Center offers students the opportunity to live and study within one of the grandest urbanresidential centers in the world with even smaller classes than they arelikely to find at Rose Hill. But if you’re enrolled at one campus there areplenty of opportunities to spend time at the other one.At Rose Hill Fordham is unique in that there are more Integrated Learning Communities for sophomores than there are for freshmen. There arethree freshmen learning communities, each requiring their own application for membership, while there are five for sophomores.Freshman at the Lincoln Center campus will reside in New Hall, a new400-bed residence; they may be assigned to double or triple rooms at acost of approximately 11,600 for the year, excluding the meal plan. Students have a smaller choice of Block and Unlimited meal plans than theydo at Rose Hill, at prices of 5,350 to 6,250 for the school year. However, they are given a 175-meal block plan if they do not select a plan ontheir own. Freshman are also assigned into one of six learning communities.11

Community5CampusEnvironsSchool Spirit

CommunityFordham is as much “New York” as Columbia or NYU; the Lincoln Center and Rose campuses have access to buses and subways that can get students anywhere in the city, just as theseother schools do. The Rose Hill campus opens onto Arthur Avenue, the Little Italy of the Bronx, as well as Fordham Road,where buses, subways and trains stop near campus. FordhamRoad has plenty of shopping opportunities, though most servethe neighborhood more than the college. The Bronx Zoo andthe New York Botanical Gardens are also close by.Fordham might have a slight edge on mobility over Columbia orNYU. The Rose Hill campus is also served by the Metro Northcommuter railroad. The university provides Ram Van service between the two campuses that is free for students who haveclasses on both or are working in an unpaid internship. There isso much for college students to do in New York; it is simply impossible to write all of the cultural and social opportunities downhere.The Rose Hill campus is compact, only 85 acres, but it feelslarger because it has plenty of greenery. The Gothic-style architecture of the older buildings is similar to what one would findat Princeton or Yale. Given the location and small campus, Fordham has not had the luxury of knocking down older buildings; ithas had to renovate and reuse them. Hughes Hall, named forthe first President of Fordham was successfully adapted into amodern business school building. It was once the location of13

Fordham Prep, an all-male Jesuit middle school that is unaffiliated with the University. A former Jesuit priest residence hasbeen redesigned to be the newest freshman residence hall. St.John's Hall, within the Queens Court Residential College forfirst-year students, was originally constructed in 1844 as theseminary of the Archdiocese of New York. With the exception ofthe McKinley Center, which appears “dated,” and the newerapartments and residence halls, campus buildings on Rose Hillare excellent examples of either renovation or historic preservation.Like most colleges and universities, the most-reported criminalincidents at Fordham are drug and alcohol-related violations.Both went on the downswing at the Lincoln Center and RoseHill campuses from 2012 to 2012 according to the University’sClery Report. Further, virtually all of the violations were disciplinary actions; there were only eight arrests for drug and alcoholrelated crimes at Rose Hill in 2012, down from 40 two years before. There were none at the Lincoln Center campus. However,the number of disciplinary referrals for liquor violations in theresidence halls is still high; there were over 500 at Rose Hill in2012, high considering that fewer than 4,000 students live oncampus. There was also an average of 25 reported burglariesper year at Rose Hill, and eight per year at Lincoln Center.There was an average of seven reported forcible sex offensesat Rose Hill, and one per year at Lincoln Center.Unlike NYU and Columbia Fordham competes in scholarshipathletics. The Rams compete in the Patriot League in football,the Atlantic 10 in all other sports. The University competes in 23varsity sports. It has produced 56 Major League Baseball players, an impressive total for a cold-weather school. The women’ssoftball program has won three of the past four Atlantic 10championships (2011, 2013, and 2014) and earning an NCAAchampionship berths in four of the past five years (2010, 2011,2013, and 2014).According to the Pro Football Hall of Fame, the NFL’s St. LouisRams, located in Cleveland at their founding in 1937, werenamed for the Fordham Rams, the favorite college team of theirgeneral manager. Legendary football coach Vince Lombardiwas a member of those teams. The Rams of 1939 participatedin the first televised college football game. The 2013 edition ofthe Fordham Rams went 12-2 with wins over a Football BowlSeries Temple team as well as Villanova and Lehigh teams, advancing to the Quarterfinals of the Football Championship Series Playoffs. According to NCAA the Rams averaged approximately 6,300 fans per home game last season, about 90 percent of their stadium’s capacity. It is fair to argue that Fordhamis “New York’s College Football Team,” because Fordham is theonly New York City school that awards athletic scholarships forfootball. Winning helps, too.14

Curriculum6AcademicsHonors ProgramsExperiential Learning

CurriculumWhile Fordham is classified as a National Research University, it is morelike a liberal arts college, even for students enrolled in the businessschool on either campus.Fordham College students are required to complete a 17-course liberalarts core with introductory classes in these subjects: !!English !!Philosophy !!Theology !!Mathematics !!History !!Natural Sciences !!Social Sciences !!Fine & Performing Arts !!Modern & Classical LanguagesIn addition, outside of the major and the introductory courses, there areDistribution Requirements in three areas: Elouquentia Perfecta seminars(four required), Globalism and Pluralism as well as an optional ServiceLearning course. All students must also take one class in PhilosophicalEthics, another in Scared Traditions. There are also two Capstonecourses, one is an Interdisciplinary Seminar in Literature, Arts and SocialScience, the other is a Senior Values seminar. While there are more liberal arts requirements than most colleges or universities, it is possible tofulfill more than one requirement with some courses. This helps students who might want to carry a double major or more than one minor.But given that Fordham is a religiously affiliated school, albeit one that16

welcomes students of all faiths, it is important for them to be prepared todiscuss, if not consider, their religious identity.Within Fordham College on both campuses Biology and Communications are the most popular majors followed by Psychology, Political Science, Economics, English and History. Fordham also makes it easy forstudents to complete a business minor within a liberal arts education.While Fordham does not offer Engineering degrees, students may opt fora four-year program in Engineering Physics or a 3-2 liberal arts and engineering program with either Columbia University or Case Western Reserve University (OH). Fordham has a 3-3 Bachelors-JD program with itsown law school as well as 3-2 Bachelors-Masters programs in Businessand Education.The Gabelli School of Business requires four fewer liberal arts courses inits core requirements. There are no foreign language or natural sciencesrequirements. Economics and Statistics courses are taken in place of aSocial Sciences requirement. Being an accredited business school, Gabelli requires all students to complete core courses in Accounting, Finance, Marketing, Organizational Behavior and Production Managementas well as some unique courses: a “Ground Floor” introduction to business in the freshman year which includes a team-based project to develop a business plan for a start-up venture; a team-based analysis of aFortune 500 company during the sophomore year where students present a solution to a vexing business problem; a career-focused individualresearch project, also completed during the sophomore year; an advanced business modeling project during the junior year as well as theoption to study in London; and a computer simulation-based leadershipproject in the senior year.The more traditional business concentrations such as Accounting, Finance and Marketing are offered on the Rose Hill campus, which alsooffers programs in Business Economics and Entrepreneurship. The Lincoln Center campus offers these concentrations which are reflective ofNew York City as a global business center: Digital Media and Technology Global Finance and Business Economics Management, with a Focus on Health Care Marketing, with a Focus on Consumer InsightStudents enrolled on either campus have several options for secondaryconcentrations as well as minors inside and outside the business school.Among the more unique secondary concentrations within Gabelli are Alternative Investments, Communications and Media Management andValue Investing. The Lincoln Center campus also offers a unique Fashion Studies minor.Fordham makes it fairly easy, compared to larger schools, for studentsuncertain between business or the liberal arts to enter undecided on amajor and still graduate within four years. The best course of action for afirst-year student in this situation is to complete Economics and Calculusduring the freshman year along with the Ground Floor business course,while addressing the English requirements and either the Philosophy orTheology requirements.17

Connections7Alumni RelationsCareer Services

ConnectionsFordham has more than 150,000 alumni, including those whoearned degrees from its graduate programs and law school.Nearly 80,000 live in New York, more than 20,000 in New Jersey. Connecticut, Florida and California have the next largestconcentrations of Rams. Among the more than 57,000 Fordhamalumni registered on LinkedIn.com, nearly 6,000 work in Education, nearly 4,300 in Communications and Media and over3,700 in Finance. Networking is easy within the New York areafor students and alumni, especially given the accessibility of thetwo campuses.Undergraduate career services are organized around a fourpart plan called Fordham Futures with activities, services andworkshops for each semester that a student is pursuing theireducation. Students must also complete a series of CareerLinkworkshops in order to participate in on-campus recruiting. Thisfall the career center will also run an Accounting and FinanceCareer Fair, a Careers for The Common Good Job and Internship Fair. The Spring Career Fair takes place in mid-February, aResearch Symposium in April.19

Conclusions8Summing up

ConclusionsFordham offers a great academic and social experience forNew Yorkers and non-New Yorkers alike, as well as a greenercampus and a higher level of school spirit and alumni loyaltythan prospective students might find at NYU. It’s fairly easy fora very good student to switch between business and the liberalarts; the two schools are not silos as they are at larger universities. Course requirements fulfilled for one school can usually beplugged into electives for the other. It’s also fairly easy for students to have a liberal arts major and a business-related minor,and vice versa.While Fordham is a Jesuit institution, the religious affiliationdoes not come tied to mandatory chapel services. Fordham, infact, is quite welcoming to students of all faiths and is quite diverse for a private, religiously-affiliated university. This might bebecause of the location or the efforts of the admissions office.However, some of the housing rules--no members of the opposite sex may stay in a room overnight--will not be for everyone.Success at Fordham depends not only on academics, but howwell a student can handle life in the big city and how easily s/hecan cover the costs. There are generous merit awards for theFordham student who might fall into the middle or top of the applicant pool at Boston College, Georgetown or NYU as well asathletic scholarships and ROTC, but little more for students whofall further down in the pool. In addition, the Bronx will not beevery non-New Yorkers idea of a college town while Manhattan21

life is quite expensive on a student budget. Some serious financial planning is in order for the four-year sojourn, especially ifthere are plans for further education.The student who is most likely to succeed at Fordham needs, atthe very least, to work hard, have a high degree of curiosityabout city life, and be willing to consider their religious identity.That student would need the same qualities to succeed at similar schools such as Boston College, Georgetown and Villanova.However, Fordham offers one advantage these schools don’t:it’s connections into the cultural, economic and social pulses ofthe Big Apple.Ed Quest’s Report CardFordham UniversityFour-Year/Six-YearGrad ulumConnectionsA/AB CB AAAStrengthsWeaknessesCan’t beat the location if you want to be in NewYork, and you have two great locations tochoose fromThe experience is very expensive if you don’thave a merit scholarshipD-1 sports for the smart athlete, all threebranches of ROTC as well to help finance theexperienceIf you’re not used to city life or want a Greekrow, look elsewhereRose Hill campus is quite green, as in grass andlandscaping, for a city schoolMerit awards outside of the Presidential don’tcover much of the tuitionWell invested in business, communications andpre-law, becoming better invested in dance,theater and the sciencesOther Jesuit schools such as BC, Georgetown,Scranton and Villanova offer more options inSTEM and health sciencesProbably as good an education as you wouldget at NYU, but smaller classes are a bonusFreshman housing is nothing to get excitedabout, though upper-class halls and apartmentsare very niceMore diversity than you might expect to find at aprivate religiously-affiliated universityStudent center, dining hall, look dated comparedto the rest of the Rose Hill campus, although thefitness center is newStrong alumni base in the New York City metroareaAlumni base drops off quite a bit outside of theNew York area.22

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campus, housing and meal plan selected. The University esti-mates that the Total Cost of Attendance will be between 65,200 and 65,900 for a student living on campus, including books, transportation, clothing and entertain