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Williams College

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I would rate my experience thus far atQuite BrightHistory/Histories (art history/etc.)
I would rate my experience thus far at Williams as extremely positive and it seems to me that most of the students responding to this site represent a small minority on campus who are for whatever reason dissatisfied, whether they come from a huge city and expected lots of nightlife or were unprepared for the huge workload. Williams gives its students fantastic flexibility and allows for a lot of creativity in your fields as well. The faculty here are so approachable. I have truly enjoyed my time here getting to know faculty and staff beyond our time in the classroom. Grading here is pretty fair, but WARNING: you have to work very hard. The workload is greater than at Harvard and other Ivy schools where the prevailing philosophy is, "once you are in, you must be smart, so we'll give you a good grade." Lots of extracurricular activities, especially if you love the outdoors.

I highly recommend visiting the school!

2nd Year Male -- Class 2011
Education Quality: A+, Surrounding City: B+
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I fell in love with Williams College asBrightPolitical Science
I fell in love with Williams College as soon as I visited it. I've been here for two semesters now, and I can honestly say it has surpassed all of my expectations.

Academics: I am challenged in my work, and pushed to do well. I don't feel like I am working the system or doing busy work. At the same time, the attitude here is about working hard in the areas you are motivated to do so. If you want to learn a subject, you will. There won't be any busy work or bullshit (at least in my experience). What I especially like about the college is that the administration goes out of their way to make sure you're not overstressed. They'll have huge stress-busting events during finals, and they organize these little fairs and festivals at random intervals. Plus, there's free psych counseling if you need a little more help. Professors are extremely open to extensions and letting slip ups slide--they seem really sympathetic to students with loaded schedules.

Administration: I remember when I was applying that I read Williams was ranked as one of the top schools in which everything "ran like butter." I wholeheartedly concur. Everything just seems to work properly. The administration is very good at handling situations, and they're very open to student suggestion. The professors themselves are all exactly what you'd want from professors. They're intelligent, prestigious, and absolutely in love with their jobs and the college. They're helpful and understanding.

Social Life: I come from a rural area, so it wasn't a big challenge for me to adopt to the quiet of Williamstown, although I'm sure some city-folk would have difficulties. Despite it being in the middle of the Berkshires, things are never dull here. There are always parties (they're not great parties, admittedly, but you'll have fun), and loads of events all over campus. If you need a break from the usual scene, several small cities are within driving distance, and there are always plays, movies, art galleries, and other things to do there.

As far as alcohol is concerned, drinkers and nondrinkers are fine here. I did not want to drink much in college when I was applying, and I would have been fine if I continued that philosophy. Because of the entry system (freshmen live in groups of 20 or so with two JA's (junior advisers)), you will have access to alcohol through your JA's and a group to go party with from the start. Aside from that, the people here are some of the best people I've ever met. I'm learning a lot about other people's cultures, I'm meeting people from all over the world, and I'm chilling with people who are very different than me. Everyone here is so friendly, the students, professors, faculty, the janitors even... everyone seems to love being here and, for the most part, are really happy, motivated, enthusiastic people.

1st Year Female -- Class 2012
Faculty Accessibility: A+, Education Quality: A
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After visiting other schools, I cannot think ofQuite BrightPolitical Science
After visiting other schools, I cannot think of a better place to spend for years. Outstanding, committed faculty; small, challenging classes; an enormous endowment spend on students; brand new facilities; a scenic mountain valley; and warm, interesting, and brilliant students. The Williams experience is perhaps best captured by Henry David Thoreau's most famous quote about Williams: “It would be no small advantage if every college were thus located at the base of a mountain, as good at least as one well-endowed professorship ... Some will remember, no doubt, not only that they went to the college, but that they went to the mountain.”
4th Year Male -- Class 2004
Education Quality: A+, Innovation: A-
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