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Bucknell University

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Jan 29 2013Unknown
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Bucknell is definitely a name recognition school that attracts a lot of "ambitious/competitive" kids. Unfortunately I would not characterize it as being an "Intellectually" ambitious culture. It is more of a "Socially" ambitious/competitive culture.

Being in the middle of nowhere has a detrimental effect on the school. Without other outlets in the surrounding communities or towns students have no alternative but to pour all their energy into a one-dimensional social scene. That leads to an excessive use of alcohol and drugs on campus. Maybe it has changed since I was there but the habits were absolutely reckless.

I realize all colleges have this to a certain extent but when the frat scene is literally the ONLY outlet for a highly-driven student body it devolves into an exceedingly unhealthy subculture - one that is the exact opposite of what a well-rounded intelligent person would hope to get from a higher-education experience. Forget about character-building, you are more likely to be more inconsiderate and juvenile when you leave than when you arrived.


I will say that the name "Bucknell" has helped me in my career. But then again, many "top school" names could have also done the same. If small-circle social ambition and getting mind-blowingly wasted are more of your drive than intellectual development and personal growth you may find Bucknell to be your place - certainly a good number of people do. But if you are looking for a well-rounded higher education experience with some diverse experiences and opportunities to stretch your character, I would highly recommend going somewhere else.

Alumnus Male -- Class 2000
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Preparedness: D+ Reputation: A
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Dec 21 2009Civil Engineering
Major Salary, Salary Trend, Satisfaction, Unemployment
The academics at Bucknell are excellent. The professors are great and classes are small. The academic atmosphere is stimulating and all I hoped it would be.

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.

3rd Year Female -- Class 2013
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Education Quality: A, Social Life: D-
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Mar 16 2008Unknown
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I attended Bucknell University for 2 years and then transferred. It was the biggest mistake of my life to attend Bucknell (or is it Sucknell?). I was attracted to the beautiful campus and I thought a small school would suit me well. I was wrong. The school is isolated in an ignorant backwater of Pennsylvania. There is nothing to do except get completely drunk out of your mind every weekend. The social life is a joke unless you're really into a pretentious, elitist Greek scene. Social life revolves around trying to get into a Greek party. Once inside, the party consists of standing in a packed room drinking beer and getting completely wasted. There is little meaningful social interaction among students where people form real relationships. The social life is oppressive. Students have to register parties and are limited to the number of parties they can have over a certain time frame. I had more freedom in high school than I did as a student at Bucknell. The student body is very homogeneous - white, affluent, Northeastern, uptight, and pretentious. There is no community or unity in the student body. I'm from the South, and witnessed more racism and sexism in two years at Bucknell than I have in my entire life in the South (yes, THAT is saying something). The academics were ok - not great, not bad, but ok. I had a professor forget to show up for a final exam!!! I had some really pathetic math professors, which isn't good if you're studying engineering. If you're going to shell out $40k/yr for school, it better be good, and I found the academics at Bucknell were no better than the large public university to which I transferred. Many of my peers at Bucknell were unhappy like me, but couldn't transfer b/c their parents wanted them to attend a school with name recognition. Overall, if you're from the Northeast, white, attended a prep school, and have pretentious inclinations, you'll probably be happy at Bucknell. If you don't fall into the aforementioned constraints, stay away and find a more rewarding and affordable college experience.
2nd Year Male -- Class 1994
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Campus Aesthetics: A+, Innovation: F
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