We try to stay in touch with our former students so they can tell us about their lives in college. Their responses always remind me of three things:
1. The vast majority of college students are happy where they are.
2. College guidebooks will never be able to capture a college like
the students who actually go there can.
3. A lot of what makes college wonderful can't be measured or
predicted. You have to get there and discover it for yourself.
Thanks to the following former Collegewise students for giving us permission to share their stories.
College is great!! I have been involved in the Appalachia program
since the beginning of the year, which is a community service program
that takes students from Boston College to the Appalachia region during
spring break. I will be spending my spring break in South Carolina
building houses, and getting involved with the community. It is a great
way to give back, and meet other freshman students from Boston
College. Football is big at Boston College and everyone is really into
supporting the football team. Weekends at Boston College during the
fall are all about football. Go BC!!!!!!!
Boston College, Class of 2012
College is the most thrilling experience of my life. There are days I never sleep, it requires a lot of work (but once you start taking classes in your major, you find a newfound energy to succeed), and I've met people I will never forget. Weekend afternoons are spent doing homework, or sitting in my friends' rooms listening to blues and jazz stations, as we sip black coffee over political discussions. The city is great and full of things to do. On Halloween, walk down Massachusetts Ave. to Dupont Circle and trick or treat at the embassies. You'll probably step onto the grounds of 20 countries if you're lucky.
American University, Class of 2012
College has been so much fun! My classes are SO great, even organic chemistry! I'm taking a psychology class too and I love it so much, I think it may be my major. All the professors are so smart and so helpful, each one of them is more than willing to help out in any way that they can. Holy Cross is such a tight community that I felt so welcome the moment I stepped on campus. We decorate for Christmas, we have small personal retreats throughout the year, you get a handwritten card from your class dean on your birthday. Things like that make me feel at home here. I feel like at any other school I wouldn't have had nearly the same, personal experience as I have had at Holy Cross.
College of the Holy Cross, Class of 2012
Cal Poly is an awesome, small townish, safe school. I mean safe as in I've walked around at 10:30 at night and not felt the least bit uncomfortable. It's really mellow here. Everyone is laid back but hard working. If you're looking for an engineering school, this is your best bet!
Cal Poly SLO, Class of 2012
College has been the most amazing experience of my life so far. I joined a sorority, started writing for the school newspaper, and even spent this last year studying abroad in London and Athens. I really feel like I have grown up in college, but the responsibility isn't something that weighs me down; it’s what I love about it. I couldn't wait to get out of high school, but I never want college to end!
Pepperdine, Class of 2010
Life at TCU is AMAZING! You get all the amenities of a large campus, like class options, big time sports, etc., with all the advantages to a small private school, like the intimate class sizes, personal attention and close-knit community. I cannot tell you how much of an effect small classes have on your overall academic experience. Every single professor I have not only knows my name, but truly cares about my education and encourages me to come visit them during office hours. If you are the student who wants to be involved, whether you’re interested in student government, Greek life, athletics, or clubs/organizations, this is the place for you.
TCU, Class of 2012
College is so much better than I imagined. Compared to other schools I visited and applied to, PLU has definitely been the most “home” feeling. I've even called it home when I was at my real house in CA. The group of students that attend are all interested in everything under the sun and my eyes have been opened to so many new life views and experiences. I don't think I would have gotten that at a really big school or a smaller one than this. The courses that PLU offers are very intense and challenging, but the things you get out of them and are able to apply to your everyday life is surprising, in agreat way. I'm glad I chose to come here instead of other schools – nothing against them. 🙂
Pacific Lutheran U., Class of 2011
Life at the University of Denver is always lively; there's a ton of activities to do on the weekends right on campus including things like movie nights and just finding different things people are doing in their dorms…there's always SOMETHING going on. Off of campus you have a huge amount of great places to eat right next to campus and also places such as Blockbuster and Safeway. Still, if you're looking for more to do, you can head downtown with the light rail which is located across the street from the north side of campus, which takes about 15 minutes to get downtown. 16th street has great places to eat and a great movie theater. I'm practically never bored here.
University of Denver, Class of 2012
College is amazing! I was expecting a huge school to make it difficult to meet friends but I have joined a sorority and a couple other organizations and have made the best group of friends! There is more spirit in the school then you could ever imagine! Every student I have come across is so ecstatic and grateful to be a longhorn. Everyone wears burnt orange and attends all the athletic events. I am so grateful for where I ended up. I could not have picked a better school and would encourage anyone looking for a big, fun, spirited school to apply here!
University of Texas at Austin
Class of 2013
College is amazing! My classes are so interesting and, for the most part, I'm learning things I'm actually interested in. I've joined the College Republicans club and absolutely love it. My favorite part of Notre Dame though is the football games. The whole campus is insane over football weekends. Even though college is a lot of hard work, it is so much fun and so far, the most amazing experience of my life. Notre Dame is so amazing and I couldn't have asked for a better college experience. I have made some great friends and am loving every minute of it here!
University of Notre Dame
Class of 2013
College is fantastic. I've taken awesome classes that are both engaging and intellectually stimulating, like Japanese Art History, Sports Business, and International Relations. I recently applied for an internship with the athletic department to work with the football program and am waiting anxiously to hear back from the school. My roommate and fellow hall mates are cool cats and they have made the experience all the better. Sports are a big deal up here. We are very committed to our basketball and football teams. It can be a bit cold, so dress accordingly. People up here are nice and social.
University of Oregon, Class of 2011
College is so much fun! There is never a dull moment at Seattle U. especially when you’re right in downtown Seattle, one of the coolest cities I've ever been to. Whether you’re downtown with all your friends going to see a play, getting dinner, exploring the city and shops, or you’re just on campus at the magic show or movie night, you're never bored! Another aspect of Seattle U that I really enjoy is the small class sizes and the professors. The largest class size you will every have will probably be 30 students. It is so much better when it's smaller, the professors pay closer attention to your needs and you will get to know everyone in your class. The professors here will bend over backwards to help you with anything you need. It is really easy to be successful at Seattle U.
Seattle University, Class of 2012
College life so far is amazing! I am constantly meeting new people who I know will be friends for the rest of my life. I joined a sorority on campus which really helped me organize my time and meet people in Greek life. I have yet to take a class that I don't like. The professors that I have had so far all wanted the students to succeed and made a point of getting around to emails that I sent them to help me with my problems. The University of Arizona is a great and welcoming place to go to school!
University of Arizona, Class of 2012
Life in college is very good so far. I play D1 soccer at GWU, which makes life quite busy with practices and games, but I am loving every second of my busy schedule. School is fun, and I love my classes and my professors. It is really cold right now (nothing like what I'm used to), but it didn't take long for me to adjust. Life outside of school is fun too! And what a great time to be in the nation's capital!! I could not imagine going to school in some other city than DC. Running or walking around the monuments is one of the coolest things ever!
George Washington, Class of 2012
College life is unbelievable!!! I am so thrilled to be a college student and enjoying all of the new experiences! Classes are difficult but I love being able to decide what classes I want to take. San Diego is the greatest city to go to college in because it offers so many great activities that are perfect for college students. The beach is extremely close to campus and my friends and I often go to the beach after class to study and get a nice tan! Downtown San Diego is wonderful and full of fun clubs and great restaurants! I absolutely LOVE being at USD and being involved in so many different ways! I totally encourage everyone to come to this amazing school, but be prepared to be outgoing.
Univ. of San Diego, Class of 2012
I love being a Bruin, but it's definitely not a school for someone who wants to coast through college. Classes are competitive and challenging, but the people and opportunities here make that all worth it. Just because a lot of people here do care about grades doesn't mean we can't have fun though. We work hard so we can play hard! UCLA is HUGE, absolutely overwhelmingly enormous (and everyone knows that) but it's not hard to make your own niche and feel right at home! Walking down Bruin Walk, through the dorms or at parties you always seem to see familiar faces.
UCLA, Class of 2010
College is amazing. I truly believe all the people who tell me that these are the best four years of your life! In regards to my educational experience, I love being able to set up my class schedule to my liking (no more 7 AM classes), taking courses that spark my intellectual curiosity, attending on-campus concerts and seminars and having professors that are truly experts in their field. While I feel that anyone can find their niche at USC because we have such a diverse student body, I would say that most students here are very outgoing and motivated, which can be intimidating for people who are more quiet or reserved.
USC, Class of 2012
College is amazing! Boston University has provided everything I could want from college. It's become my home away from home and I have truly fallen madly in love with this school. I'm having such a fun time in and out of the classrooms. The professors here are entertaining and love to be teaching. I just pledged for a sorority on campus and have met some amazing girls. At any given point in time there's an infinite amount of things to do ranging from just going on a walk down Newbury Street or to the Boston Commons, or staying on campus and watching a band perform at BU Central. There's never a dull moment at BU.
Boston University, Class of 2012
I love Villanova. It's definitely an East Coast experience. The people, the surroundings, and the culture are much different from California. I've learned a lot about the world around me, disciplines (like philosophy and sociology) that I have never studied or would have planned on studying, and I've grown a lot as an individual being away from home in a new environment. My favorite thing about Villanova is the amazing school spirit. The basketball games are so much fun, and our school pride really unites us as the Nova Nation. It's great because the 'Nova community feels like one big family.
Villanova University, Class of 2012