Is Illinois really a bad school? I had them ranked fairly high on my personal list. UNSWR says they're #27, which is very respectable. Also, my thought was that if I didn't get into Northwestern, Illinois would be a good bet because I could see myself living and working in Chicago after graduation. If I get into Illinois with a big scholarship and get no money from Northwestern, I thought I would have an interesting choice to make. Are you saying that Illinois isn't worth that much consideration at all?You'd have to pay me to go there. The campus is as bad as it gets, IMO. I would never live there. Location almost never plays a role in my decisions, but it would here. Just a horrible, horrible place. Not all people think so, but most do. If you want to party, it's not bad. But if you want somewhat of a social life outside the realm of what UG's do, then you're out of luck. Go to NU. You'll LOVE spending 3 years in Chicago.
How uncanny is this: After not hearing a word from Illinois since my app went complete, my acceptance was waiting in the mail today when I got home from work. And they offered me $10,000 a year to boot. Excuse me, I have to go respond to Texas and Penn ding threads with questions about their cities and cost/benefit analysis
Despite my recent postings, it is a good school and a good letter to get. Congratulations.