Elizabethtown College - Comments and Student Experiences|
As a business student I was surprised by how much I learned after four years. I learned the business knowledge while also unknowingly developing my soft skills needed for a successful career. Professors challenge students to develop strong communication skills and student groups help students develop leadership skills. I am definitely more prepared for my first job than students from other schools.
As far as the non-educational stuff Etown has its pros and cons. It is a small school in a rural area so there is not much going on in the town, and most stuff is a drive away. The social scene is not that large and focuses around small groups based on student groups and sports teams. The party scene is not huge so if you are looking to go out and meet new people every weekend don't come here. If you were like me at 18 and not ready to take on a big school, Etown is a great place for personal growth.
The downside is there is very little diversity in the student body. Mostly white students from the surrounding states. The majority of guys came to the school to play sports and mostly consist of the jock type who wants to get wasted every weekend. The girls outnumber the guys and many are a bit idealistic and immature. That being said there are just as many solid interesting students who are active on campus. If you like to hang out with small groups of close friends on the weekends this will be a school for you.
I found some great friendships that will last a lifetime. I admit I got sick of the school after a two years so I went abroad experienced something different and was glad to be back on campus when I returned. So if you are the type of person who is highly motivated and have a smaller tight knit group of friends Etown is the right place for you. If you want a larger school with a larger social scene it is not for you.
Overall, the campus is relatively pretty and campus events like Mr. E-town, the Tree Lighting and the cafeteria's themed dinners are surprisingly lively for a school that's otherwise dead on the weekends-- because the entire campus shows up to them. Like any school, admissions heavily enhances E-town and it's all a facade. But let's be serious, there's nothing relatively cool to do on the weekends. As a Communications major, it was the worst decision I could have made, naively thinking I would get a cutting-edge education and the latest updates on technology... but silly me for going to a school in the middle of nowhere. Lancaster, Hershey and Harrisburg are nothing less than a day trip each at the most. Hershey is fun but you (and your wallet) can only take so much chocolate and roller-coasters. You will make the best friends of your life, but expect them to look exactly like you. There's absolutely no diversity and students are quite content living for the somewhat lame parties on the weekends. My best friends and I could care less about drinking and often found ourselves fleeing to Philadelphia or NYC on the weekends in order to stay sane and culturally aware. Take advantage of what little events are offered on campus by SWEET-- if nothing else, they're free and a bus trip to major metropolitan areas like Philly, NYC or DC will run $15. While Admissions makes SWEET out to be the largest organization on campus, be wary as they are nothing more than a few power-hungry students planning on campus events. I've been lucky to meet a few cool people who work for them, but the rest are control freaks- much like the yearbook staff in high school- who plan events in order to guarantee that they and their group of friends will have a good time. A few-and I mean few- do a good job and actually understand what the students want-- and for that, they deserve a medal.
Other than that, I've met a small group of faculty who actually care about their students' success-- including those within my major. Together I can only count a handful of professors that I enjoyed and learned a lot from.
The food is okay-- I've heard that it's better than most schools, but that's easy to say when you're not eating the same thing every day. Desserts in general tend to be good everyday, but for one cafeteria for the entire campus, the food gets boring very quickly. It gets especially old when you can't drive off campus and everything offered downtown includes pizza, pizza and more pizza. Expect little to no diversity on the menu.
Faculty members tend to be more friendly than not and I've had more enjoyable experiences with Campus Security and cleaning staff than with some of my professors or Dining Services. It all just depends.
Also, the campus promoted service learning as the motto is "Educate for Service" but it tends to be a small group of students who put in all the work. "Into the Streets" is a relatively popular service weekend, but it would be nice to see the positivity carry out all year. Relay for Life is absolutely huge on campus, which is definitely one of the positives that E-town offers-- it will genuinely make you feel good all week afterwards.
If you're evenly remotely interested in Art, Design or anything of the sort, you're better off going somewhere else. Classes, even in the core program, are boring and often busywork... professors fail to make topics interesting and as a result, most classes are extremely dry. From my understanding, Occupational Therapy, International Business, Education and Music (Therapy, etc...) seem to be the strongest programs on campus. If you're considering any other majors, look into other options first-- DON'T SAY I DIDN'T WARN YOU!I knew my junior year of high school that I wanted to go to Elizabethtown and was led to believe that E-town was a progressive, culturally diverse and intellectually stimulating college... I had more time than most to look into the college, but none of that mattered because I was so blinded by their smoke and mirrors that once I realized sophomore year how much I hated it, there was no turning back. I'm transferring now having flushed 80,000 down the toilet. Pretty much every student has considered transferring at one point or another, just to warn you. Many of the upperclassmen have advised "to get our while you still can." Save your money, time and effort.