I have been here for a year and I have been nothing, but miserable the whole time here. The campus is very easy to get around, but they don't care at all about safety. When it snows and the roads are all slippery, they don't care. Not only do they make you come to school, but they also do not clear the snow or ice at all. Some of the majors are excellent (Math/Science/Computer/Engineering, Theatre, Communications and others) are great, some are bad (like the Art Program). There is good student life, you just need to check it out. The food is also really delicious here. But, that doesn't make up for the school. I had great teachers, who are fun and knowledgable and horrible teachers, who are a joke & waste of time and money or even tell you to leave your major because you aren't good enough. The students are either extremely weird, really nice, or snooty. The advisors are a huge joke. They literally don't help you pick out the classes. They just go with the flow and have you pick them up, not caring what happens to you. The Counseling department (Personal) is horrible and they are extremely rude! The only good thing about the school is the Career Counselors. If I didn't had one more year of school left and could transfer to Stevenson or Towson, believe me I would. I only chose this school because I'm local and I got a good scholarship. UMBC makes me want to drop out of school altogether, it's THAT bad. This school is terrible and emotionally draining. Oh, BTW: Have fun, waiting a whole month of your final grades!
When I tell people that I'm going to umbc, I usually get the response of "Wow, that's a great school!" I believe it to be true based on my experiences so far. The professors that I've talked to are so friendly and willing to help answer any of my questions. Also, the students I've met are kind, upbeat, and willing to talk. When I am on campus, I find that the campus and facilities are beautiful (especially during the spring when the flowers around campus are blooming). The price of umbc is also affordable, especially if you are a high-achieving student, as there are many opportunities for merit scholarships (institutional ones are primarily based on standardized test scores and gpa, but also look into merit scholarships attached to the various scholars programs- it is very worthwhile to apply!) Basically, you are obtaining a stellar education for a reasonable price (umbc has been consistently ranked as one of the top 150 "Best Value" colleges. I have a lot of friends who turned down places like Johns Hopkins, Lehigh, and Virginia Tech to go here. Aside from that, president Freeman Hrabowski is an amazing man, a fantastic speaker, and he really connects to the students. He has really helped the relatively new school to take off, as recently there have been record numbers of applicants and rankings have soared (and they will likely continue to do so). Also, in part thanks to him, the school has obtained much funding for scientific research (through NIH, etc.) and these opportunities are very available to students, as the school is very undergraduate-oriented. A few complaints that are often heard are that umbc is mostly "a commuter school" and that there is "no social life" or "nothing to do around campus." Just to refute these claims, new dorms have been built to allow students to live on campus, and as a result, around 70% of students do now (which is quite average compared to other campuses). Also, there are many clubs and extracurriculars to get involved in if you want to meet people and make friends! As for the party scene, while parties are harder to find, they are there if you look for them. This campus tends to be academic though, so if you plan on getting wasted every night, I advise you to look into umd instead. Finally, there are plenty of off-campus things to do- the school provides shuttles to surrounding areas like Catonsville and Baltimore, but it also helps to find friends with a car. It's Baltimore people!! There's a ton of things to do, go explore!! In sum, this school is way underrated, almost like a hidden secret- if you want a good deal, a supportive college environment (without a sink or swim attitude) and a well-rounded college experience, consider looking at umbc!