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| Not a school for people interested in Japanese culture, language, anime, etc. People are intolerant of the whole "wapanese" thing, and there are literally no classes to take on asian culture. |
|Apr 24 2011|| Male --
Class 2000 |
| I have a very mixed review of my experience at Goucher College. I appreciate that I had professors who offered the time and resources to work one-on-one - without holding your hand - to really improve the quality of your academic work. But Goucher really has some major cracks in its social life and resources. |
Honestly, I attended Goucher because my mother attended Vassar, and she always valued her education. My father, on the other hand, attended Columbia U. and Yale U., and he was able to see Goucher for what it was: a gimmick. Goucher promotes cross-culture education, and it is well-known in the academic community, but it's really not a good place to explore and EXPERIENCE your field of study, as Goucher has very little resources to offer depending on your major. The few research positions available with a handfull of professors fill up very quickly, leaving you to find research assistantships/internships on your own. During my last year, they finally figured out that they had to advertise the professors' individual research to prospective students. But if you're really looking for a substantial research assistantship, you have to look at Johns Hopkins University or University of Maryland, which are already really competitive for research positions. Goucher does have some very strong positive points to promote: it is the first school in the country to have a study abroad policy as a part of every students' course of study, and it does send graduates to every level of graduate education (from the ivy leagues, to Oxford, to state univerisities). However, many of the other reviews that mention Goucher's drug culture and difficult-to-navigate social scene are correct. It's almost a past time to do drugs in the woods, or steal stuff from the cafeteria. And like someone stated, Goucher promotes individuality but does not practice it. The student body was also a little too mixed for my taste. There were a handful of really gifted students, but you also had some not-so-bright kids that made the campus atmosphere seem almost grundgy. Keep in mind, I graduated from Goucher before the Athenaeum was built, and I hear that the campus life has improved dramatically since its completion, so my view of the campus might also seem outdated.
One of my biggest issues was with campus security. When I took the issue to security, they told me that it wasn't a priority. The dean of students also offered me a casual rejection. At that time I realized that the political correctness of the campus was a gimmick policy. The social activism on campus is an advertising ploy to gain naive idealist students. I begged my mom to let me transfer to Rutgers, but she told me that I needed to stay at a school with the prestige, connections and support of Goucher. So far, I haven't seen those connections work for me.
Now that I am a graduate of two years, I am still unemployed and living at my parent's home. I applied to 300 jobs, heard back from four, hired by none. The volunteer research assistantship that I recently found was something I had to make happen on my own with career counseling from a different organization. Of course everyone has to pursue their own jobs, but if I had the resources and connections of a large state university or a larger private university, I would not still be unemployed. The Career Development Office still has a lot of developmening to do (three people work for fifteen hundred students).
A couple reviews did not rate Goucher's academia very highly, and I would like to say that for the most part that's inaccurate. I had very challenging professors in every department I studied in, especially the Biology department and the Psychology Department. The Biology department is full of some very well educated staff, and the premedical postbac program is one of the top in the country. I have also seen their literature and politics department send their students to very prestigious universities, such as Gerogetown and Oxford. Each professor has a unique set of accomplishments and backgrounds to offer to their students. And the small classroom size makes for excellent lecture conversations. I have only had one professor who I felt was not a serious academic, to my parents' standards or anyone else's standards. I was in only one class where I felt that if I had taken the course at a community college, I would have been in a more serious academic course. Also, I would highly recommend taking a course (or courses) at another university through Goucher's affiliate program. The affiliate program allows you to take courses at Johns Hopkins University, University of Maryland, Towson University and University of Baltimore. They also offer a ton of study abroad options, including a program with Oxford University.
As for the campus itself, everything's within an arm's reach, and the campus is a place to feel safe and nurtured. The center of town (with supermarkets, shopping, bars, etc.) is the place most of the students from other univerisities go for their needs. I do remember being able to exercise on campus at any hour of the day or night and feeling completely safe.
Overall, I would say that Goucher has some very strong points, but I would consider looking at a school with many more resources and a better-known name. I felt that I was supported by the faculty and staff, especially my advisor (who still sends out letters of recommendation two years after I graduated), and the environment at Goucher was very nurturing.
|Feb 22 2011|| 4th Year Female --
Class 2009 |
| Let me say that for the record, I am very grateful for the education I received at Goucher College. The 18 students to one classroom is the best feature of the entire school. You have far more opportunities to communicate with you professors one-on-one, and you give your professors to learn about you as a student. This is a rare feature that you will never find at a bigger state school.|
Another great feature about the faculty/staff is how they encourage classroom discussion. Although the professors love a good discussion, but if your political viewpoints leans more towards the right, be prepared to met with unnecessary animosity from your classmates. If there is a particular subject that you want to learn, there are classes for that, and the staff are always so open. I think this environment is why I succeeded so well academically. It is very cool that you are in such a small school, but the student body is very arrogant. I'm slightly more conservative than the average Goucher student, and I am very anti-drug, which did leave me a feeling of isolation from the social scene. Goucher is very good at promoting individuality, but doesn't practice it. It certainly doesn't help that the school president is just as pretentious.
The poorest feature of Goucher, is the fact that you go into the real world unprepared. Unless you choose a science major, you will find it extremely difficult to get a job in your major. I graduated last year, and I am STILL unemployed. I chose a Communications major, something a little more practical than some of the other programs. I sent over 200 resumes across the country from volunteer to full-time work. Of those resumes, only 3 places called me up for an interview, none of which hired me. In what is partially an act of desperation, I decided to go to grad school in a completely different field. I should have know something was up, when Peace Studies became one of the more popular majors, and the alum from that program usually end up in the same boat as I am right now.
I really did want a job upon completing my undergraduate studies, but in hindsight, I wish I would have known a degree from a liberal arts college would be nothing more than a diploma hanging on my bedroom wall in my parents house. I am two weeks shy of my 24th birthday and am sorely disappointed as to where my degree has landed. Fortunately I do enjoy my grad school career path, and cannot wait to further advance those studies.
If you are somebody who is very-career minded-make sure you have a plan as to where you want to go after your undergraduate. Even if you are an incoming freshman, plan on grad school. Having such a good relationship with your professors is a real treat, so take that up.As far as the social scene goes, if you don't care about politics, or if you don't do drugs, it will be very difficult to fit in--I will be brutally honest with you. But Baltimore/Towson is a great town to explore, though unfortunately, Goucher students prefer to stay on campus and not explore the vast possibilities the city has to awful. So if you come here, take some time to explore the area.
|Nov 18 2010|| Alumnus Male --
Class 2000 |