So what are we going to do at ASW to let others know we are LSDers? Maybe everyone who is from LSD can wear pink pants with their screen name on the back pocket?
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Well, were you admitted to CU? Because in the end all of this could be for nothing. The decision could ultimately be made for you.
Coming from out of state... I'd probably go to CU over DU. I have yet to be offered a scholarship from DU, and I don't expect to be offered one (if by some chance I am, that'd change my whole view on things) As it is it's hard enough to seriously going to Denver over one of my own state universities, both of which are at least 20 spots higher in the rankings.
Once you live in Colorado for a year, you're able to pay in-state tuition for the second and third years at CU. The DU scholarship has a 3.0 requirement, as you said. Now, I think that'd be great motivation to work hard and not allow yourself to slip (not you in particular, but anyone) But there's definitely more security in the CU in-state tuition for second and third years.
Beyond that... CU's class is much smaller than DU's... I'm assuming that being ranked 36 over 77 entails that the school does enjoy some deal of greater prestige. That's not to say DU is a bad school, it may mean DU is a great school but CU is just better.
DU looks awesome. So does CU. You have to worry about a wife and kids, so you may have to choose the cheapest option (which would be DU, if you can keep the scholarship) plus wherever you would deem a better place for your family to live for the next three years. I don't know much about Denver or Boulder (besides the fact that I wouldn't mind living in either city) but I'd assume that, being a huge city, Denver would have greater options for your family.
Anyway, as I said, this could all be a moot point. It's all pending on your acceptance to CU. I hope I, too, have to make such a decision. Best of luck!
Just to add one more opinion, I'm a CO native, went to CU for undergrad, loved it. I applied to CU and DU and got rejected at both, but I wanted CU much more. In state tuition is impossible for me to pass up. I am still seriously considering trying to transfer to CU for 2L depending on where I end up for 1L.
consider arkansas, either little rock (where i am) or fayetteville. in-state tuition scholly for ALL out of state acceptees.
i did 2 years here and will do the visiting student thing at denver for 3L. that is, if they ever confirm it.
For the ranking between those I don't think it is worth it to pay more for one or the other.
As mentioned, the real debate is maintaining 3.0 vs the instate. Lose the 3.0 and the price jumps accordingly. Don't get instate and you are paying (possibly) alot more.