College is Family Affair for Incoming Triplets

David, Samantha and Matthew Rosenblatt

David, Samantha and Matthew Rosenblatt, triplets from Ringwood, New Jersey, decided last year to make the 2,100-mile trip together to attend the University of Arizona.

Chris Richards/University of Arizona

Making a cross-country trip to attend college for the first time can be daunting. But there are at least three students in the University of Arizona's newest – and largest – class who brought a built-in support system with them on their 2,100-mile journey to Tucson.

David, Matthew and Samantha Rosenblatt are triplets from Ringwood, New Jersey. They all decided last year to attend the University of Arizona together, and they started classes this week.

The Rosenblatts have seen a lot of each other since June 3, 2003, when David was born about a minute before Matthew, who is two minutes older than Samantha. So, in many ways, embarking on another life chapter together came naturally.

"We don't do it on purpose, but we've always somehow managed to stay together," said Matthew, an honors student and architecture major in the College of Architecture, Planning and Landscape Architecture.

The triplets' parents encouraged them to attend any college they wanted, and they all chose UArizona. When asked what motivated the three of them to come to Tucson, Matthew is quick to mention one of Southern Arizona's biggest draws.

"We all hate the cold; we're sick of it," he said. After several years of family vacations near Scottsdale, he added, sunny Arizona was an obvious place to start the college search process.

Southern Arizona's climate has always been a draw for students from areas with tough winters, and it's a strength university recruiters often leverage, said Kasey Urquídez, vice president for enrollment management and dean of undergraduate admissions.

"We make sure that everything we're sending to students showcases the beauty of our campus – the number of days of sunshine, our mountains, the outdoor experiences one can have here, our sunsets and our downtown life," Urquídez said.

The university has recruiters living across the country, including in New Jersey, and the number of new first-year students from the East Coast continues to grow each year. A 28% increase is expected this year over last, with more than 460 first-year students from the East Coast enrolled this fall.

For the Rosenblatts, warm weather and proximity to one another aren't the only benefits of attending UArizona. They're also looking forward to diving into their academic programs. David and Samantha, who will both enter the Eller College of Management as pre-business majors, said Eller's connections to businesses internships were a major factor in their decision to attend UArizona.

"Those connections Eller has were a really big thing," Samantha said. "I was also told so many times that it was one of the top business schools."

Eller is ranked No. 21 among public undergraduate business programs by U.S. News & World Report, and No. 6 among online public undergraduate business programs.

Matthew said he was drawn to the School of Architecture's five-year Bachelor of Architecture degree program, which – unlike four-year undergraduate architectural programs – allows students to pursue professional registrations without further academic study. Matthew has his sights set on working in an architectural firm, and eventually starting one of his own.

When researching UArizona, the triplets relied on online resources such as the virtual campus tour, virtual dorm tours, the campus map and their colleges' websites.

"Those were perfect," said David, an honors student, adding that the tours were the next-best thing to visiting in person. "It was exactly what I needed (in order) to know where I'm going before I'm there."

The Rosenblatts visited campus together in May after making the final decision to attend the university and finalizing their on-campus housing arrangements.

Having spent so much of their junior and senior years of high school learning virtually, all three of them said they are most excited about learning in person at UArizona. And while they each plan to have their own college experiences and make plenty of new friends, sticking together from time to time will remain part of the plan.

"It feels nice to know there's going to be someone there that I already know and am comfortable with," Matthew said.


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