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Princeton University

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Almost everything they tell you about Princeton isQuite BrightEnglish
Almost everything they tell you about Princeton is a lie. From the brochures they mail out depicting beautiful Gothic-style dorms (only a quarter of the campus community lives in those dorms, the other 75% live in ugly brick 70's style buildings)to the president telling you grade deflation isn't that big of a deal (you try convincing an employer that a Princeton B is as good as a Harvard A). I was swayed by well-manicured lawns, the perfect, sunny weather (most of the year it rains/snows/is cloudy) and the awesome people I met at Pre-frosh orientation. But something happens to people when they come to Princeton: they become wholly preoccupied with getting the perfect grades (because people here don't learn for the sake of learning, they learn in order to become successful investment bankers), catching up on sleep (because we're constantly sleep deprived), and getting hammered on "the street" every single Thursday and Saturday night (because getting black-out drunk keeps one from dealing with the fact that they're stressed, miserable, and sleep-deprived). This place doesn't foster intelligent discourse or love of learning, it fosters competition. People here compete for everything--the right eating club, campus positions, even to be allowed into certain majors.

In my nearly two years here, I've only observed 2 positive aspects of this place: money and the professors. By money, I mean how much money the school has to pay for things for students. I have friends in other schools who have to play for laundry and printing, but here it's free and we're given money for study breaks, projects, really anything you could ask for. Essentially, whenever there's a problem Princeton throws money at it and hopes it will go away. This isn't always a positive thing, but in an expensive town like Princeton, NJ it usually only helps.

In terms of the educators I've encountered here, Princeton isn't lying about how great they are. I've had the most fantastic professors and TAs here. That isn't to say that the classes themselves are always interesting or all that good, but the teachers I've had have been excellent, always available and accessible should I need help with anything.

I worked my ass off in high school so that I could go to college and enjoy learning for the sake of learning without worrying about grades. I got into 11 of the 13 schools I applied to, and all of them were great schools. Unfortunately for me, I chose the wrong one, and now, with my grade-deflated grades, I can't transfer into any of the schools I originally got into. I'm stuck here seriously considering taking a gap year because the thought of staying here for two more years makes me physically ill. Knowing what I know now, I definitely would not have chosen Princeton. Most people here are unhappy with the general atmosphere of stress, competition, and, if they're like me, lack of motivation (why work hard when you aren't going to get grades that reflect that hard work?), but no one talks about it; they just drink until they forget. I hate this place, and I'd give anything to go back two years and choose University of Chicago, Brown, or Columbia instead where I got scholarships and students are happy.

2nd Year Female -- Class 2012
Faculty Accessibility: A+, Education Quality: F
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I transferred after two years.Quite BrightEnglish
I transferred after two years. I just never felt at home here even though I grew up nearby. The school into itself, as are the students and staff. i ended up graduating from a smaller school in Vermont that is known for its excellent writing program. i was much happier. This might be the right school for some people, but not for me.
2nd Year Male -- Class 2009
Campus Aesthetics: A, Education Quality: F
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So many people come here just for theNot so brightCommunications
So many people come here just for the name recognition. They want to wear the ugly orange sweatshirt and say they went to Princeton. There is a distinct culture of exclusivity here that will never change, no matter how many first ladies write theses about lack of diversity. Princeton is very hard to get in to, but once you are here, you don't have to work as hard as you did in high school (unless you are a math/engineering major). I wish i had gone to a smaller school where I could feel like the professors and administration really cared about me. Ultimately, a waste of money.
4th Year Female -- Class 2006
Campus Aesthetics: A, Scholastic Success: B-
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