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Wesleyan University

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Wesleyan's professors make theHistory/Histories (art history/etc.)
Wesleyan's professors make the school. These instructors are passionate, knowledgeable and more than happy to interact outside of class or school hours. Take advantage of the opportunity to work with these experts!
Alumnus Male -- Class 2000
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I will admit that I knew very littleQuite BrightBiology
I will admit that I knew very little about Wesleyan when I decided to commit-- I was mostly persuaded by the VERY large scholarship they offered me. But making that blind decision to come here was the best thing I ever did for myself. Without a doubt.

The academics: I thought that I would be in the minority being a pre-med student at a liberal arts college but that really isn't the case. The science courses are rigorous but not very competitive. Having taken 7 AP courses and being valedictorian at my school, I thought that my intro/principles courses would be a breeze but I must say that I have been challenged here, which isn't necessarily a bad thing. I can say that I think about the things I learned in biology and social psychology on a daily basis, and I also can apply the concepts I learned to real life.

The students: First off, I have to say that Wes has a pretty small student body. Every place you go, no matter where/when you go, you WILL run into someone you know, and sometimes it will feel like you see the same people all the time. Though this gives the campus a feeling of familiarity, sometimes I wish there more students here. Nearly everyone is friendly and interesting (also I was surprised at just how attractive both the male and female students are), I was amazed at how fast everyone fell into their own groups within the first month. It isn't really cliquey but everyone just has their go-to friends. I am lucky to say that I found 3 amazing best friends within the first week, but I can see how it might feel isolating if I wasn't so fortunate to find my group. I love how everyone I'm acquainted with are from all around the country (even the world) and that they all seem to have different majors. Though there are some stuck-up, pretentious, exclusive students here, they do not impact my social life at all. Everyone here is intelligent in their own respect. There are some people in my classes who I can already tell will eventually change the world.

Social life: the weekends can be hit or miss, but when they're hit, they are crazy good. At the beginning of the semester I would generally hop around to 3-4 different parties A NIGHT. Alcohol is very abundant, so is weed. I know people do coke here but I haven't encountered it. There's also a fair amount of people that don't drink or smoke at all and they have just as much fun. We have dorm parties, pre-games, big "frat" parties (usually at program houses), house parties, block parties, you name it. Lots of dancing, lots of small, student run concerts which I find really unique. Hook up culture is there if you want it. One thing to note regarding the small student body size is that if you decide to hook up, there is a 100% chance that you will run into them a few times during the week just because the school isn't that big! (I guess this can be both a good and bad thing haha)

Random comments: food is really great, but gets old after awhile. One day they actually served lobster tails haha. The campus is really beautiful, and rather spread out even though we have a relatively small student body. Many clubs to be a part of, but I found that I had trouble balancing my academics with extracurriculars just because the workload is so rigorous. Teachers are great, they are intelligent and genuinely care about their students. I NEVER went to the gym in high school but I actually go about 4-5 times a week now. Olin library is absolutely stunning, I spend a looot of time there studying, which is absolutely necessary to get average grades.

I always hear things about how "weird" wes is, but my overall impression is that it's just a laid back, fun, intellectually stimulating place.Overall, come to Wesleyan. I miss this place immensely when I'm on break, and I wake up in my dorm everyday with a sense of belonging and purpose. I've never felt that way before. I get an overwhelming feeling of "home" every time I return to campus. Coming here has changed my outlook on the world and in my life. I am so happy to say that after only one semester here I have really began to find myself and my place in the world.

1st Year Female -- Class 1921
Faculty Accessibility: A, Surrounding City: C+
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Wesleyan is, without a doubt, a fantastic placeBrightPsychology
Wesleyan is, without a doubt, a fantastic place to be an undergraduate. I left a smaller, much more highly ranked liberal arts school (think top-three) because I felt stifled by both the academic and social options, and I think it was one of the best decisions I've ever made. Wesleyan, to me, is so unique because of it's brilliant, unique, artistic, laid-back, open-minded, kind, off-beat and one-of-a-kind student body. This is a campus where people really give a damn and really take initiative, and because of that the social and extracurricular lives here thrive. Obviously, there are a good number of not-too-friendly hipsters and a contingent of stereotypical "jocks," but they do NOT dominate the social scene or define Wesleyan in any meaningful way. Furthermore, the vast, vast majority of people I've met--regardless of what label I might apply to them, which is a silly and closeminded practice anyway--seem to have intellectual integrity and sincere passions, which comes across in the lion's share of the courses I've taken.

Professors by-and-large are wonderful as well, and it's unusually easy to get involved with research early on in your undergraduate years. By the beginning of my junior year, I had second authorship on a psychology publication in a major research journal, which will be an asset when grad school app season rolls around. What's more, most professors are kind, accessible, truly interested in their students and doing interesting work, and this--combined with the unique spirit of the student body--keeps intellectualism alive and well at Wes.

Perhaps the best thing about the intellectual life, though, is how casual it often feels. I feel like I can easily have conversations about ideas, theories, news, etc. while still discussing "stupid," or silly, or otherwise non-intellectual topics and everything just bleeds together. There are certainly people here who probably come across as pretentious ivory-tower types, but they are few and far between, and I'm not close friends with any of them. I'm lucky enough to have friends who are simultaneously brilliant (in a non-intimidating way), laid-back, creative, kind, sincere, adventurous, open-minded and world-expanding--something I expected at my previous alma mater, but found MUCH more of here.

Other great things: beautiful on-campus movie theater that plays everything from obscure art films to new Hollwood blockbusters ($5 2 nights/wk; free the other two); great concerts and art of all sorts; cafeteria food is very high-quality for a college...FOR A COLLEGE...and there's always something at least palatable, plus the meal plan includes plenty of points for the great on-campus grocery store; relatively diverse and international student body; woods and streams and waterfalls within walking/biking/running distance; Middletown is a sweet little community with plenty of social problems to explore and address; if you're curious in exploring the psychedelic world, or at least the clouds, that's easy and accepted; fairly attractive student body; Foss Hill is BEAUTIFUL on a nice day; program and senior housing system can be awesome).Not-so-great things: wealth and white privilege; so-so administration that can make problematic decisions at times; cost of tuition; potential administrative attempts to take the weird out of Wes and make it another Williams/Amherst (manifested by things like anti-chalking rules), though I don't really think this is going to happen; portion of the student body that is loud, smashes bottles on the sidewalks, things like that, but they're at every school, and not a big portion of Wes; hmmm struggling to think of other things)

3rd Year Male -- Class 2015
Social Life: A+, Faculty Accessibility: A-
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