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Roger Williams University

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If I were speaking to a friend whoBrightPsychology
If I were speaking to a friend who was interested on going to Roger Williams University, I wouldn't let them go. The school is "fine" in my opinion. You'll like it if you fit the profile of: extremely white, stereotypically preppy, a guy who wears bright colored pants and padagonia on the regular (I'm not kidding... It's most of the campus), drives an Audi or BTW casually at age 20... Need I go on. If I could describe the school in two words, it would be- WHITE and CLIQUEY. It's not normal and it's stifling. If you're a person of color, they will be taking pictures of you and posting it for ads for the school like a zoo animal- be aware of this. Typically, 60% of a class will have dropped out or transferred by their sophmore year. Frats dont exist. Sororoties dont exist. And it's 1/2 an hour from providence and around 35ish minutes from Newport (note- you're not allowed a car on campus until Sophmore year- good luck going out). The campus is pretty during the off season (Summer/Spring). But most of the time you'll be there, it's beyond cold. The winter wind whips you in the face 24/7 from October-Mid March. They sell you the school's pretty campus when you visit, but will you actually be going to school there in July? Nope. Now imagine going to the beach in December- not fun. The acceptance rate is almost at 80% because over 1/2 of each class leaves due to social issues, mental health or the cost. The school is expensive and the debt is not worth the education. I graduated from RWU without student loans, but I would never go into debt for this school. You'll get a better education (and probably just an overall better college experience) at URI or PC. Most of the student body struggles with depression and the counseling center is packed 24/7. I graduated in Psychology and the department was decent. I took some interesting classes and I though the program was fine, nothing too too special. The professors can either be very nice and helpful or they have a bit of a power complex. I've met a coupld gems throught different departments but honestly they're far and few in between. Also, (I can't stress this enough) the school does not help you get an internship and you will be alone trying to find a job. They help you set up a linkedin and how to make a professional resume, how to talk in an interview.... Hopefully most of you can do this on your own. But when it comes to connections and opportunities- I havent seen many. They have a career fair that you're forced to go to but the employers there wont apply to you unless you're buisness, marketing, engineering, management, or (sometimes) teaching. Your social life won't be much until you turn 21 and can go to the two bars in town. The off campus parties are underwhelming and fairly difficult to get into. And when you do get in, the Bristol PD will shut that down within an hour- you can count on that. I met some good people during my time at RWU and got a decenf education, but would I do it again? Absolutely not. Some people do like it at RWU, but like I said, they're a very specific type of person (see above).
4th Year Female -- Class 2018
Campus Aesthetics: A, Scholastic Success: F
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This school sucks onBrightArchitecture
This school sucks on helping student adjust to college life. The counselling center was not helpful because due to canceling appointments for me and on other students. The housing department was condescending with my disability not taking my rights seriously.
3rd Year Female -- Class 2019
Extracurricular Activities: B-, Individual Value: F
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I graduated from RWU May '16 and have
I graduated from RWU May '16 and have had some time to reflect. I used this site a lot when I was making my choice to go here and I always found the most useful reviews to be the ones that stayed objective, so I will try to do that in my own review. I should mention though that my time at Roger is unique to me, just like your time at which ever school you choose will be unique to you. College, like everything in life, is what you make of it. That being said, I felt like I had to try extra hard to make lemonade out of the lemons Roger handed me. Here are some of the pros and cons of my experience broken down by category(compared to the kinds of resources/ experiences my high school friends had at different colleges, as well as based on the school I am currently attending for my Masters).

I studied architecture and the program was great. I really think that RWU is one of the best architecture programs in its league on the East coast. I came here because the university emphasizes a core curriculum that exposes ALL students to courses from many different fields (philosophy, sciences, writing, math, etc). This was important to me, especially since most architecture programs are so rigidly constructed. I was able to get a liberal arts education and an architecture degree, which was huge. This also gave me the opportunity to double major, which I may not have been able to do elsewhere (I think its worth noting that I constructed my own second if you don't see the major you want in the offerings this may be an option for you and you should look into making it happen).

Campus and Resources: The campus is beautiful. It really is. I think that the resources could be better, but for a small private college they are doing okay. I now go to University of Oregon, and the two are just on different levels. It would be like comparing apples and oranges... so again...for a small private college, its okay. The gym is nice, the dining services are exceptional, the printing services could be better, and the internet is mediocre. With the exception of one time when I couldn't find ANYWHERE on campus to bind a presentation, I was never upset with what the school had to offer.

Clubs, orgs, and campus life: Alright, there's no way to sugarcoat this part... social life on campus is lousy. Really just the worst. There isn't enough money to support the clubs adequately, but that doesn't even matter because the students are the most apathetic group of people I have ever experienced. It's numbing. Nobody DOES anything. I hope so desperately that this changes as the university matures, because its a toxic environment. Its so hard to explain to outsiders too because I've never experienced anything like it in my life. Everyone is just so caught up in themselves that they can't be bothered with anything else. I know people who met their "people" here and it was smooth sailing for them, but I also know a lot of people like me who never belonged and it was rough. I felt like I was a prep school, not a university. I was surrounded by a very immature, uninspired group of individuals.

Surrounding area: The coast is beautiful, and there is a wide variety of things to do in about an hour radius. Newport, Providence, Bristol, Boston...its all right there. I also had a friend in the outing club who went to the White Mountains for the weekend. If having a car is an option for you I would HIGHLY recommend it. My quality of life skyrocketed the one year I had a car. The campus itself is kind of awkwardly positioned between highway and ocean so without a car its just a lot more difficult to feel like an independent person. If you can't have a car, the bus is an option too but...a car would be way better.

Overall: This was long as is but I have so much more I could say about this place. At the end of the day Roger Williams is an alright school. I think it has its flaws, but its still growing into itself. Remember that its only in its early 60's. If I wasn't set on studying architecture, or was willing to move away from the east coast for college I would not have come here, however neither of those were the case. If you're studying a degree other than architecture or biology I would suggest considering other schools.

Alumnus Male -- Class 2000
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