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Bard College Simon's Rock

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Simon's Rock has a lot of things right.Quite BrightPsychology
Simon's Rock has a lot of things right. One of my favorite things is that students can do activism on campus to change what they don't like. The administration makes it easy to bring up concerns. The faculty are great, the classes are great, the students are great. The dorms are okay, the food isn't the best.
1st Year Female -- Class 1921
Innovation: A+, Campus Maintenance: B
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Simon's Rock is different than other schools becauseQuite Bright
Simon's Rock is different than other schools because everybody actually wants to be here. It's not the "logical next step" to drop out of high school and come to college, so the students who are here actively want to be here. Also, Simon's Rock makes it really easy to transfer if you want to, so if you arrive and discover that this isn't the right place for you, they help you find where you should be, so throughout the four years, students who are here really do want to be here. Professors also are very passionate about their subjects and clearly very excited to be teaching students who are so engaged and willing to work hard. It creates this really great atmosphere where everyone is excited about learning, excited about the opportunity to attend college, must less such a great college, and aware that this is a privilege that most people don't get.
4th Year Male -- Class 2018
Education Quality: A+, Surrounding City: C-
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First off, Simon's Rock is a school fullBrightEngineering Department
First off, Simon's Rock is a school full of passionate and driven students.
So, let's start with Writing and Thinking workshop. It will be one of the most challenging weeks of your entire stay at Simon's Rock, both emotionally and academically. You'll have two types of students, the ones who finish their work dead early, or the ones who sit in the lounge all night until 3 writing an essay for the next day. Groups start almost immediately and it will feel like summer camp. Most groups are formed with 1) Workshop groups and 2) Roommates. In fact, most of the groups that are together for the first semester are from the same writing and thinking workshop. After the week is over, everything will start to seem fine, but then the rest of the Simon's Rock students will come. That's when the process of meeting new people starts again. The Dining hall with explode with the amount of people crammed in. Don't be scared though, most of the students at Simon's Rock are welcoming and friendly, just remember to be open. Like every school you do have those douchebags and snoots, but the students at Simon's Rock are really accepting. Warning for those who are not prepared or aware, this is an EXTREMELY liberal school, so if you know that you will not get along or contradict with some of the ideals of a liberal, then I would recommend not coming here. The school prides itself on being accepting and for the most part it is. The campus is fully of diversity, but there is a lot of animosity as well. If you are religious (I found this mainly for christians), you and your religion will be challenged if you are open about it. Prepare for (possibly insulting) comments in class that disregard religion. If you are wealthy or have money you will be encountered with people who aren't as well off as you. Those people will badger you about how much money that you have and they don't (even though most of the campus is EXTREMELY wealthy). If you are white, expect to be called out on a number of occasions. Bottom line: If you don't fit into to the social environment of SR, then you'll be isolated AND if you have morals or ideals that are different from SR then you should seriously reconsider coming here.

Along with the social life, there comes safety. There are a lot of minors here with no parents, so be wary of what you do and who you do it with. Drugs are big problem on campus. You will smell weed EVERYWHERE. When you walk to class, in class, in your dorms, etc. There are a lot of incidents with SR, drugs, and the hospital. So be safe kids. There will be a point in the year that at least one person will go to the ER every weekend. They're not all because of drugs, but for a school of only 400, that's a lot of ambulances. Drinking isn't that big of a problem here. Next issue: the birds and the bees. Make sure you know who's with who or else things will get messy. Don't be too impulsive either because if something does wrong, you're bound to hear or see that person the next week even if you actively try to avoid them. There are a lot of rape cases with Simon's Rock as well. Most people know about them, but everybody pretends not to.

Health services provides a lot of emotional support and counseling and the disabilities center is very understanding. Health services closes at 5 and when you need them the most, they've already gone home. They aren't open on the weekends either so don't get hurt. If you want real support though, you'll have an academic advisor who might as well be your therapist. They check on your academics and emotional health (if you get a good one). Make sure you click with your advisor and if you don't, DO NOT HESITATE to change them. It'll help you in the long run. If you find a professor that you end up loving, make sure you change your advisor fast because if they're pretty popular, other students will probably want them too.

Most students transfer after the 2 years and their AA. SR is so tiny that it doesn't have the materials or the classes that most of the students here need. The professors are amazing, but because of the few professors they have, the classes can be exclusive, the classes you need with clash with one another, or they are only offered every 2-3 years. So choose wisely. Be prepared to write a lot, even in your math classes and be prepared to be constantly put on the spot. You'll eventually have to teach a lesson in at least one of your classes and SR is big on taking initiative and deep thinking. If you miss one assignment you WILL fall behind and your grades WILL suffer. Because of the intimacy of the classes as well, if you fail to do an assignment, you will be embarrassed and people will notice that you didn't do your work. So come prepared. SERIOUSLY. I loved Simon's Rock. I made friends that I'll keep for a lifetime and an education that prepared me for the future. The education that you get at Simon's Rock is like no other. In the moment you look at what you're doing as ridiculous (Seminar), but once you leave Simon's Rock, you'll notice how much you've grown both academically and personally. Don't come here because you only want to leave high school. Don't come here because you want to get away from your personal problems at home. The people who do it solely for those reasons don't last here. You can have a combo of these, but the main reason should be here is because you want to be challenged. I'm not degrading SR or trying to lure people away from this college. I'm just warning those who are debating whether or not to come here. If you look at my comments and decide to come. Great! But if you look at my comments and decide it's not the place for you, then look at your other options. I know people who loved Simon's Rock and I know people who hated Simon's Rock. It all depends on who you are and what you want to do. I wish you luck, whether it's at Simon's Rock or not :)

1st Year Male -- Class 2017
Faculty Accessibility: A+, Social Life: D
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