A Big 10 Rivalry: University of Minnesota – Twin Cities vs University of Wisconsin – Madison

Elisa Guo, Spread Editor

National College Decision Day is fast approaching, and many seniors are focused on making important decisions regarding their post-secondary education pathway. Most students opt for a traditional, four-year college plan. As Minnesotans, many Mounds View students decide to settle at the University of Minnesota or University of Wisconsin-Madison, two universities close to home. Several factors go into students’ decision choosing between these two similar schools. 


Urvi Athalye, 12, ended up choosing the University of Minnesota over the University of Wisconsin-Madison because of its student demographics and campus. “I picked the U of M over Madison [because] it had a more diverse student population, which is really important,” Athalye said. “I also liked that the U of M was less of a collegetown. Though the campus is technically separate [from the city], it wouldn’t be considered an isolated college area.”


However, other students enjoy University of Wisconsin-Madison’s campus location and geography more. “I applied to UW-Madison for its Big Ten campus feel and prime location,” said Charlie Brody, 12. “I really like that there is a quiet lakeshore side and a bustling urban side to the same college campus.” Additionally, given that UW-Madison is located farther from home than the University of Minnesota, students can feel more independent. “I chose UW-Madison because I felt like it was the perfect balance of being close to home, and being far enough away to experience full independence,” Brody said. 


College can also be notoriously expensive for students, so cost is another factor when considering colleges. “Cost was my biggest factor, [and] given [the University of Minnesota] was a decent public university which was in state, the tuition would be relatively low,” said Ashwin Wariar, 12. Moreover, Wariar was already set on what he wanted to study for his undergraduate degree. Wariar, who is studying computer science, said,“I didn’t apply to UW Madison because I already had a very clear idea for a while of where I wanted to get my undergraduate degree—the University of Minnesota.”

Regardless of where seniors will be attending college after they graduate, they are excited to begin a new chapter in their lives. “I’m really pumped to explore the city more, meet lots of new people, and go to fun parties and campus events,” Athalye said. “The people I’ve met so far through social media who will be in my class are all so awesome. I’m also really looking forward to being more independent and having my own routine where I get to live with people my age.”