Transferred to Brooklyn College
December 8, 2010 5:21 PM   Subscribe

I've transferred to Brooklyn College from College of Staten Island. I'm in the Computer Science major. I'm wondering if there is anything to keep in mind when studying there.

I'm curious as to whether the college is better in the Computer Science department than College of Staten Island (which seems to me to do poorly in this regard).

I'm also curious as to what other ways Brooklyn College is better or worse than College of Staten Island. I'm mostly concerned with the better aspects.
posted by antgly to Education (6 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I don't know anything about either of these departments so, perhaps, I shouldn't be responding to this question.

However, as someone who worries to no end about the superiority or inferiority of one life decision over another, I'm going to suggest you not worry about these things too much. From what I know, Brooklyn College is a great place... a fine school! Try to focus instead on enjoying your time there, learning as much as possible, and doing as well as you can.
posted by faeuboulanger at 7:37 PM on December 8, 2010

Griphus has mentioned in the past that he's a Brooklyn College student or alum or suchlike.
posted by Sara C. at 7:39 PM on December 8, 2010

Okay, considering me officially alerted to this AskMe. I'll try to answer it at work today. I also have an old friend who graduated as a CS major around '06, so I'll see if I can get in touch with him - MeMail me your email address.
posted by griphus at 4:33 AM on December 9, 2010

Brooklyn College's reputation within CUNY is that it is a better School than CSI. I have no facts or data to support this, but as a CUNY employee (not at either campus) this is what we "know".
posted by Pineapplicious at 7:26 AM on December 9, 2010

Okay. I might say some things here that may offend, but I do not wish to and I -- and my fellow MeFites -- can assure you I am not an individual who says dickish things under the guise of "telling it like it is."

Staten Island, as you may or may not be aware of, is practically a mostly-white, middle class, conservative suburb of New York City. There's a line to be walked and if you do not walk this line you are ostracized. This extends to CSI itself; there's a bit of variation in the student body, but not a whole lot. Brooklyn College, on the other hand, seems to have an official motto along the lines of "we don't give a shit." That is, you can be whoever you want to be and no one really cares. This goes for both the social realm and inside the classroom. You're entering a place that is diverse to an extent that CSI cannot be simply from its context. And with that diversity come tolerance and understanding and all that fun stuff. I've never heard of anyone getting shit for being who they are and I spent my time there hanging out with people who would be getting shit if there were shit to get. It's not perfect, things will happen but on the whole there's a lot more acceptance of just about anything simply because every other person lives a life very different than your own.

If you want to have fun, look outside of your major. I was a CS major once, and I hunt out with other CS/engineering/hard science majors. Unfortunately, as a whole, these are not fun-loving people. There was a lot of sitting in the dark watching movies and anime. And that's about it. Generally -- although not always -- they are not the sort of people who want to go out and do exciting things. There is also a lot of social awkwardness that can be mistaken as hostility, and that goes in a vicious circle and everyone ends up going home and sitting on forums and IRC. That doesn't mean don't make friends with people in your major, of course. You'll need study buddies and just people with whom to shoot the shit about your college experience

The people you want to make friends with, if you intend on having fun, going to parties, getting laid, all that stuff, are the people who you'll see on MetaFilter derided as "hipsters," and who you will not find at CSI. They're all over the school, but usually hanging outside of Boylan Hall, the liberal arts building, which is directly opposite of Ingersoll Hall where you will probably be taking the majority of your classes.) These people are nice, usually out-of-towners and looking to make friends, and generally pretty accepting of anyone. Talking to random to people is completely socially accepted. Very few times have I ever been given or seen anyone given the "why are you talking to us" eye. Read this website and practice what you read and you should be okay. Before you know it, you'll be going out and having fun.

Other than that, prepare for bureaucracy on a level you have never seen before. BC is, unfortunately, infamous in that regard, although I assume it extends to the rest of CUNY. Get really familiar with Brooklyn College Portal (not to be confused with CUNY Portal which you will also need.) There's a "Degree Progress" section in there that will help you pick the right classes to take. Also get familiar with WebSIMS. If you want to avoid lines, do all your class registration through it; you'll get emails when it is time to register, and you should do so ASAP. In fact, you should pick your classes the moment you get the email about the new semester's schedules being available so that when it is time to register, all you need to do is plunk in the numbers.

Go to at least one advisement session a semester with a counselor and ask them anything you are not sure about, that's what they are there for. If you took the Regents in High School, talk to them about getting the Foreign Language exemption. Get your Speech Exemption; it's literally a ten minute conversation and you're good. Take the CUNY Proficiency Exam (CPE) as soon as you can; you don't need to study, it's easy as hell. Talk to the adviser about these three things, don't wait until you are about to graduate.
If you get a really bad grade in a Core Class that you know you can't do any better in but still pass, get a Retroactive Pass instead of taking it over.

If you have a class which uses Blackboard, keep in mind there is a class roster list within Blackboard -- it's a bit of a pain to get to and involves doing a search for 'all students' within your class. This will help when you need someone to contact for any reason; just get their name from the roster and drop it into Facebook. Don't be shy about it.

This is all I can think of that you should know about BC. Let me know if you have specific questions.
posted by griphus at 1:38 PM on December 9, 2010

Oh believe me... I know what Staten Italy is like... Thank God I don't live there anymore...
posted by antgly at 5:50 PM on December 9, 2010

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