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Columbia University in the City of New York

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I am a junior at Columbia and IQuite BrightEnglish
I am a junior at Columbia and I love my school. I am suspicious that the many negative comments are fake. Perhaps, they are all written by the same person.

Most of my friends at Columbia are very happy. We love this school. My suggestion to high school students is to do your own reasearch and spend some time at Columbia to see what it is really like. I think you will be very impressed with the students you meet and with the campus.

2nd Year Female -- Class 2013
Education Quality: A+, Individual Value: B
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I am very happy to be going to Columbia.Quite BrightEnglish
I am very happy to be going to Columbia. The resources and faculty are the highest quality anywhere, and the location in New York is unbeatable. The complaints that I usually hear around campus center around the Core and the administration. Here are my takes on these two concerns:

First of all, if you go to Columbia you should expect the Core Curriculum since it is a major part of Columbia's reputation. I am a very self-motivated student and I still appreciate the basic well rounded education that the Core ensures. Granted some of the classes can be useless depending on your professor, but overall it is incredibly useful. It makes sure that every student has the same basis in philosophy and literature so that there is a common background for class discussions. And on a more basic level, the ideals of the Core Curriculum signify an attitude at Columbia towards a complete, well rounded education that I strongly agree with. As far as the administration issue goes, Columbia does have a problem with bureaucracy. They don't treat students with individual attention and there is a lot of red tape. That said, this also gives the student a lot of freedom since the university doesn't pay much attention to what you're doing. I was thinking about doing an ethnomusicology degree and while creating the major would have been incredibly problematic with all the appeals and paperwork, the Anthropology dept was fine with me doing an Anthro degree focused on music. The point here is that if you're self-motivated you can find a way to work the system and as long as you fulfill the basic requirements set in place you have a lot of freedom.

2nd Year Male -- Class 2011
Education Quality: A+, Individual Value: C+
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First of all, I graduated from the CollegeQuite BrightPreMed and Medical
First of all, I graduated from the College more than 15 years ago, so I am not up to date on the current state of affairs. But I will say that having graduated from Columbia has given me a "leg up" and given me some connections that have helped me later in life. There is at least one job that I know I got specifically because I was a Columbia grad, and I know the Columbia name does carry some weight (although not quite as much as the top tier Ivies).

Overall, I feel I received a high quality liberal arts education. There are definitely some disciplines that are better taught than others. If your aspirations are in journalism, law, or political science, Columbia is the place for you. I am a big believer in the Core Curriculum and the critical thinking skills that it instills. However, I was a pre-health professional student, and the basic science classes were mediocre. The downsides were a lot of classes taught by grad students and non-native English speakers (esp. in the sciences). Also, as a University, Columbia does not place enough priority on its undergraduate programs.

Of course, one of the biggest assets of a Columbia education is having NYC as your playground. My advice is to take full advantage of this, get outside of Morningside Heights, and enjoy the benefits of living in an awesome city.

My college experience was very different from that of my peers who went to other schools. Obviously, football and other athletics are not big at Columbia. Greek life was not so big as at other schools as well.

Some of the negative comments I've seen on this forum I understand. New Yorkers are viewed as rude, impersonal, and rough around the edges. Crime is an issue in any big city. But there are communities within the Columbia campus that are genuine, caring, passionate, and compassionate --maybe not outwardly friendly but still good people.

Looking back, I have no regrets about my Columbia education. It could have been better in some respects, but I do value what I learned, and in many ways it has been an asset in my post-college life. However, with skyrocketing tuition, honestly I am not so sure it would be worth the money to go to Columbia nowadays. If you have limited resources, it may be better to use that money to attend a top Ivy for undergrad or save it for graduate/professional school.

4th Year Female -- Class 1993
Campus Aesthetics: A+, Faculty Accessibility: B-
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