After a short visit to the Jewish Theological Seminary, my decision was made: I'm going to JTS! I was leaning heavily towards them before visiting just because they gave me so much financial aid, but I wanted to make sure they'd be a good fit. I knew the instant I walked through those doors.
The area of Manhattan is just perfect: produce markets, coffee shops, falafel places, and green green green. The Manhattan School of Music and Columbia University are withing walking distance, and so is Central Park. Not to mention, I was told, it is the safest area of NYC. The campus is intimate and cozy with a tiny enrollment size (there are only 55 undergrads graduating this weekend!). I felt so comfortable and was warmly welcomed by everyone I met, and they were all so willing to go out of their way to help me get to where I needed to be or what I needed to know. AND there is housing a-plenty for me to live on-campus! The lady I met in financial aid even told me to make sure I put in for "entertainment expenses" when I anticipate how much of a loan to get! haha. Everyone had something wonderful to say about the area and the great things that are provided for students and anyone working at the school. I was told that I'd know every student by the end of my first semester.
I think I've made the right decision. :) Now to do the paperwork and formally notify them of my decision!