Bucknell University - Comments and Student Experiences|
However, if you are looking for diversity in the student body, you will not find it here. It didn't exist 23 years ago, and it doesn't appear to exist now. I enjoyed my social life even though I wasn't a member of a sorority, but it is easier for girls not to be Greek and still get into a frat party/have a fun social life. I had friends in many different Greek organizations because I was involved in theatre and some more artsy stuff, and had a pretty large, cool group of friends. Basically we made our own fun, and we had our share of parties with drinking, hookups, etc., but I don't think that was all we were focused on. When I read other reviews, I see that the focus on getting smashed every single weekend is still the same as it was when I attended. It's a little disconcerting to be in that atmosphere constantly. Overall, students then were very white bread, conservative, a bit racist, definitely sexist, and really only interested in people just like them - very little interest in expanding horizons at Bucknell. Based on other stuff I've read here, that doesn't appear to have changed.
I have to say the campus is absolutely beautiful - I've been back for class reunions and stuff and the administration has really updated campus with new buildings and facilities, and it's just a pretty campus overall. However, Lewisburg is very rural, and it's definitely out in the middle of nowhere.
If I had to do it again, I would go to a school that was a bigger than 3500 undergrads (5000 to 10000), with more diversity and less of a Greek life - way too much emphasis on being Greek for me when I look back, even though I found my way. I would not recommend Bucknell to my daughter, which is really saying something because many alumni go on and on about how it was the best 4 years of their lives. REALLY?? Wow - just another example of how shallow Bucknellians can be. I think I would shoot myself if I thought my best years existed between 18 and 22 - don't get me wrong, I enjoyed my college years, but it was not everything.
My advice is to really think about what you are looking for from a college experience - if you want to expand your horizons, diversity and people who have had different experiences than you is the way to go. Think about whether that high tuition and "name" is going to get you anywhere - my experience is that once you get that first job after college, no one really cares about where you went to undergrad, only what and who you are and what you bring to the workplace. Good luck!!
But the social atmosphere is at the level of middle school, with an overabundance of over-entitled, judgmental east coast people who would be challenged to correctly locate states and cities west of Pennsylvania on a map.
There is little diversity, and many students are openly racist and narrow minded, as they unapologetically make remarks denigrating people who are different from them, including blacks and people from foreign countries. After a few years, it becomes a stifling, mind numbing atmosphere of privilege gone wrong.
As an international student, I can say that there is no such thing as diversity at bucknell. It is just a utopia that is being advertised as if it's real. About 90 percent of the campus is typical rich White Americans. This situation directly affects the social life too. Socially, you have to party like a White American, play long hours of pong at downtown houses, or grind on a girl wearing a spandex and flipflops to a party, listen to fratmusic.com. It seems during the freshman year that joining a frat is the only way out for guys, but it's not even true. The only change is the people around you.
Also, I would like to note that there is a strict cast-like system that governs the frat life. Richer people will only hang out at richer frats, middle class people will only hang out at middle class frats. For girls, what adds on to this is how attractive you look. If you aren't blond, there is something wrong with you, if you don't have UGG boots, you've gotta be kidding me, every girl in bucknell has UGG boots. This is pretty much like an extended edition of high school.
Another word on architecture.. The campus really looks very neat and clean, but inside the buildings is an architectural mess. Whoever draw the floorplans of the older buildings is either not an architect, or was still in grad school. The newer buildings like the O'leary center, or THE KLARC GYM are simply made for the inconvenience of the students. These buildings resemble a small maze, you have to walk ridiculous distances to get from point a to point b in the gym, which could have easily taken you 10 steps. The elevation of some floors don't match with others in some buildings, so you randomly have to go two steps down, pass through a door, and go three steps up if you again want to go from point a to point b.
Also, you should note that you as a freshman will not be able to:
- Bring a car to campus. We don't have enough car parking.
- Join a frat/sorority
- Pick your own dorm / roommate
- Pick your own meal plan (You have to eat the horrible caf food for a high cost)
- Live downtown @your own house / rent a house.- Party with the cool people (unless you know the person who throws it) (this makes sense though, as a measure of risk reduction / not giving alcohol to random minors)