Drew University - Comments and Student Experiences|
Pros: There are many nice people here. Many of them are odd or awkward but still very nice. The teachers are very helpful and willing to meet with you whenever. Small class sizes are nice. We do have a beautiful campus when its spring/summer.
I know my review is neutral because I did have a good time, the school is just not what I want in a college. If you want to come here, do it. I recommend this school for students who live nearby and like to go home often. This school is not for anyone who lives far away and just wants to be near the city or wants to go to a college for theatre.
For a small school, there is a lot of red-tape in dealing with non-academic departments. Plan to stand on line for hours to get housing, and the health service center is lousy -- go to an off-campus doctor or clinic. Academic departments are great to work with, but dealing with non-academic departments is like going to the state Department of Motor Vehicles.
Social life is nothing to write home about. I attended Drew in the late 1990's when the school's alcohol policy was lenient, but today the school has become one of the strictest is New Jersey, issuing hundred of tickets each year to students for alcohol violations. I can remember going to outdoor barbeques with students eating burgers and drinking beer. I was stunned to find out that the campus public safety now enters private student rooms in order to issue alcohol citations.
Tuition and costs have become increasingly problematic. Drew costs $52,500 per year (not counting books and personal expenses) making it one of the most expensive colleges in the United States. The school used to give out a lot of scholarships and financial aid. It eliminated its full-tuition merit scholarships a few years ago, and financial aid and other grants have not kept up with tuition.
The Good -- The college provides a good education, many of the professors are excellent, and the campus is very safe and beautiful. Because of the college's small size, it's very easy to get leadership roles in extracurricular activities. The Political Science and Theater Departments are truly outstanding.
The Bad -- There is a lot of red tape for small school. Housing is guaranteed for four years, but room selection, and get repairs done is a royal pain. Health Services is quite unprofessional, and I recommend going to an off-campus physician or clinic.
The Ugly(e.g.,things that have deteriorated in recent years)
(1) Computer Initiative -- Drew was well-known for giving every student a laptop as part of the Tuition. Program was ended, and now college will sell a laptop if an incoming student wants one.
(2)Social Life & Policies -- Drew was never a party school, but treated its students like adults. In the late 1990s, the alcohol policy was lenient, and so the college had some social life. Now, Drew has one of the strictest alcohol policies in the state (hundred of students issued citations each year), and most students leave campus on the weekends or just watch TV.
(3) Class Sizes & Professor Accessibility -- Classes sizes have gone up in the last decade, and the school now uses a decent amount of adjunct (part-time) professors. An incoming students should expect to have some larger classes (>50) during their first two years.
(4) Costs and Financial Aid -- Drew is the most expensive college in New Jersey (even most expensive than Princeton!). A year at Drew costs $52,500 not including books and personal expenses. The school used to give out a lot of scholarships and financial aid, but that has been reduced in recent years. Advice -- If your family has a lot of money or you are able to get a lot of financial aid, Drew may be the right choice particularly if you like theater or want to go into politics/public service. If you really can't afford Drew, I very strongly advise against going into debt to come here. It's really not worth it.
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