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Waco-Baylor University: What is Waco really like?

Waco-Baylor University: What is Waco really like?

Old Jan 20th, 2007, 11:52 AM
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Waco-Baylor University: What is Waco really like?

Silly question, I know, because I already see from several posts that there is not much to Waco.

But my daughter is interviewing at Baylor for their graduate program. They will probably offer her a tuition-free program with a residential stipend, which is a good deal and a great reward for all her hard work.

I'm trying to be delicate with my question and I certainly don't mean to stir up controversy. Please remember that I have never lived in Texas and the only thing I know of Waco is the Davidian fiasco.

So, my daughter is 1/2 hispanic with a hispanic surname. The young man she lives with is also hispanic. They are both well-educated and mature. But is there a racial/ethnic problem in that area of Texas?

I am not picking on Texas. They are currently in Berkeley, No.Cal., and have already run into quite a bit of racial profiling, especially from the Berkeley police. They were quite surprised and disappointed in this and it soured them completely on staying in the area for her 6 years of graduate work.

That being said, it is obvious that the "reputation" of an area is not always deserved (since Berkeley's rep is quite liberal). Hence the question, what about Waco?

Long post, but I appreciate any input.
Linda
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Old Jan 20th, 2007, 12:27 PM
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If you don't get any answers to your questions here, I would try posting them on this Texas forum:

http://www.city-data.com/forum/texas/
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Old Jan 20th, 2007, 12:35 PM
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I have a co-worker and her daughter attneds Baylor. No, there isn't a whole lot to the city itself, but it seems like a university that students attend because of campus life. Extra activities like sororities, music, sports (attending football and basketball games) etc. I guess what I am trying to say is the life of the student revolves around the school in Waco. I would guess that the people would be somewhat conservative, but I am not sure about ethncially diverse. I will say that Baylor has a very good reputation in Texas and it would be worth a visit if your daughter is getting free tuition in graduate school. It sounds like a great deal.
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Old Jan 20th, 2007, 12:37 PM
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Also don't let that whole David Koresh scandal freak you out. It was an isolated incident and cults do not seem to be the norm in Waco.
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Old Jan 20th, 2007, 12:41 PM
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It typically has good gasoline prices on the drive from Dallas to Austin.
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Old Jan 20th, 2007, 12:44 PM
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ilovetulips-
Yes, it will be a good deal, and that along with the reputation of their department for her major is why she is considering it. They are paying all her expenses to go there and interview next month.

The interview will give her the opportunity to get a feel for the campus, etc. There are just some things you don't find out until you actually live there, hence this post.

AustinTraveler -
Thank you for that link. I will check it out.
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Old Jan 20th, 2007, 12:45 PM
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mikemo -
Yes, that seems to be about the best people say about Waco
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Old Jan 20th, 2007, 12:57 PM
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In regards to gas, just remember that Waco isn't too terribly far from Austin which is very liberal and racially diverse. Dallas isn't too far away either and it is very cosmopolitan. I know that may not help "like" Waco any more, but it gives some weekend alternatives.
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Old Jan 20th, 2007, 01:00 PM
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Plus, both Dallas and Austin have direct service from here by Southwest Airlines
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Old Jan 20th, 2007, 01:45 PM
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Isn't Baylor the school that finally allowed dancing on campus a couple of years ago? If so, conservative is a mild term for its social stance. Whatever Berkeley's faults, your daughter may be in for culture shock without going to a foreign country.
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Old Jan 20th, 2007, 02:01 PM
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"The young man she lives with. . ." This won't go over well at Baylor. It is a Southern Baptist school, more liberal than most SB schools, but still VERY conservative.
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Old Jan 20th, 2007, 03:02 PM
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On my last trip to Austin, we stopped in Waco at a What-A-Burger. I was kinda shocked at how redneck it was. It will be very different from liberal Berkley.
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Old Jan 20th, 2007, 03:23 PM
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Michael, happy tourist and pepper -

This is just the kind of information I was looking for in order to give her a heads-up. The University is not going to tell her this sort of thing. Very interesting that it is life-style, rather than ethnicity, that may be the problem.

Thanks very much.
Linda
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Old Jan 20th, 2007, 03:52 PM
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While Baylor is undoubtedly conservative, it is not a Southern Baptist school. It is affiliated with the Texas Baptist Convention. The campus administration and many faculty members are conservative Christians. However, don't mistake Baylor for a small fundamentalist college. Any school with 13,000 students will have a variety of life styles. Any life style/party style found at other schools will also be found at Baylor, perhaps not in as great a number. The University has a number of Hispanic students, so that is not a real issue on campus. The real jolt is leaving the campus. Waco is very spread out; the area is definitely not cosmopolitan. Flights are American Eagle to Dallas and sometimes Continental to Houston.
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Old Jan 20th, 2007, 05:36 PM
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Just a FYI, Waco is pronounced "wake-o." My brother-in-law lived there for a few years, and he called it "whack-o." The town itself is pretty typical of Central Texas. The average population outside of the college is mostly uneducated and low income. Baylor is the main industry there, and most of the other employers are blue-collar.

Happy Tourist is very correct that her living arrangements will likely not be met with enthusiasm.
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Old Jan 20th, 2007, 09:25 PM
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I know several people who went to graduate school at Baylor. The "living situation" might have been an issue in the 1980s, but it won't be now, especially for graduate students. Central Texas is racially diverse and that won't be an issue either. The Davidian thing happened 20 miles outside of Waco and friends who lived there said the only reason they knew it was going on was the media reports from the remote rural site at the time . However, "culture shock" is a real possibility, although Dallas and Austin offer a lot of it just two hours away in either direction.
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Old Jan 21st, 2007, 02:08 PM
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Thank you all for your reponses. I really appreciate them.

Fortunately, my daughter has several offers on the table for graduate school and has a lot to evaluate. She will be visiting Baylor in February and I'll let you know what she thinks of Waco.

Thanks again,
Linda
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