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Carleton College

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I looked at this site religiously in highBrightHistory/Histories (art history/etc.)
I looked at this site religiously in high school, and I ended up coming to Carleton in part because of what people said here. I agree with many of their positive comments! Students are so warm and friendly, and it seems like everyone is able to find their place. Because Carleton is so small, people often know what is going on with one another, but the comfort of a tight-knit social community has been invaluable. I also cannot speak highly enough about my professors and the quality of Carleton's academics. Especially during COVID-19, profs have been so understanding and helpful, making the predicament of zoom classes significantly less miserable. Courses are most often fun and interesting, and the workload has actually been more manageable than I initially expected, especially with the level of support that is available on campus.
2nd Year Male -- Class 1923
Faculty Accessibility: A+, Extracurricular Activities: B
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Carleton is excellent bothQuite BrightGeography and Geosciences
Carleton is excellent both academically and socially. You have endless opportunities to try new things, meet incredible people, and learn continuously in and out of the classroom.
4th Year Female -- Class 2015
Education Quality: A+, Surrounding City: A
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Though most reviews of Carleton will tell youQuite BrightUndecided
Though most reviews of Carleton will tell you this, it's true that Carleton is a very unique place. The faculty is beyond helpful and accessible. They do perform original research, and lots of it, but their primary purpose on campus is the teaching of undergraduates. Some professors will even tell this to their students. Also, not only are all classes taught by professors, but many courses also have teaching assistants and "prefects" who are assigned solely to individual classes to help any students who have questions or who need review. Some courses even include mandatory TA sessions outside of normal class meeting time.

While many would consider liberal arts colleges to be weaker in the sciences, Carleton's science departments are very strong. A low faculty to student ratio allows students to receive personal attention from the faculty in their major department (or, frankly, in any department). A smaller student enrollment means fewer students per major, and therefore greater access to resources for students in their major.

Socially, Carleton is a place where there the only type of person who could ever feel out of place would be an arrogant, over-competitive, unfriendly person. You can really be as unusual or different as you want and you'll find that many others are the same way. There's a sic-fi interest house. There's an assassin's guild. There's interest housing for Jews and for Muslims. Ultimate Frisbee is Carleton's strongest sport. Traditions include eating a full breakfast in the dining hall the night before finals, and chasing after a plaster bust of German poet Friedrich von Schiller. The party scene is whatever you want it to be. If you party, you can do so, and find plenty to do. If you don't, you're far from alone and you can still have a fun weekend.

Carleton's housing is definitely widely varied. There are residence halls, which have either rooms from singles to triples or suites, there are houses and townhouses that have a more community-based setup, and there are interest houses, where you can live with others who share a common interest. Most of the houses are nice, and are very desirable choices during room draw (the housing selection process). While most of the residence halls are nice as well, there are anywhere from one to three exceptions. Musser Hall is usually avoided if possible, and some who are really picky would say the same about Myers and Goodhue halls, but they're really just fine. Some halls are more historic and have an old-school feel, and others were either recently renovated or recently built, and it's easy to tell. Dining, from what I understand, has been improving significantly over the past ten years, and it's probably only going to get better. Bon App?tit does a good job for the most part, though there are always a few days each term where there's just nothing you want to eat. Then again there are also more than a few days where everything looks worth eating. There's always a lot of variety and vegetarians will usually have some good options. Of the two dining halls, each has its strengths and its weaknesses, and Sayles Caf? is usually pretty reliable if you're on the twelve meals per week plan or if you're hungry outside of mealtime or late at night. If you live on the east side of campus though, (not as close to Sayles), you're probably more likely to order a Domino's pizza than to walk across campus.

Safety is really fantastic on campus. The security guards are pretty lenient if you're consuming a beverage that you shouldn't be consuming, however not so much in certain other situations. I don't know anyone who's ever been worried about walking across campus, or even across town at any hour of the night or day. Heck, the most frightening security text alerts sent out this year were for a man who approached a professor claiming to be "the son of the King of Iceland" who could start World War III if he wanted, and for a man who had a phone holster on his belt that someone thought was a gun holster.The campus is beautiful and well maintained. There's an 880-acre arboretum, used both for recreation and for research. Downtown Northfield may not be very exciting at night, but there's a decent selection of restaurants and the town is definitely beautiful and historic. Northfield is 45 miles from the twin cities, and while there definitely aren't hordes of students leaving Northfield every weekend, the cities offer what you'd expect from a major US city and are just a bus ride away.

1st Year Male -- Class 2015
Faculty Accessibility: A+, Surrounding City: B+
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