Charleston Southern University
Charleston Southern University - Comments and Student Experiences|
The best way I can describe this school is like a giant Christian high school that has students who live at school. The one thing about this school that reminds me of high school is the social aspect. There's so many cliques it's ridiculous. People also gossip a LOT. Someone spread a rumor about one of my friends and it got around to so many people. That shouldn't be a normal thing happening at a college. Where everyone is an adult. You'd think that people would have better things to do, but they don't.
It's so boring, most people go home on the weekends. I can't do this, as my home is 9 hours away, so often I'm alone and stranded on campus as I don't have a car. It's so boring that people have to go downtown or to the beach to get any form of entertainment. That's one good thing about the school, it's a fairly short drive (25-30 minutes) from downtown Charleston and the same amount of time to any of the beaches in the area. But the fact that's the only fun thing most people can think of to do is a problem to me.
Joining clubs hasn't helped me socially, in my experience. Theres only around 50 clubs available to join, and the majority are religious or academic. The school doesn't seem to be a fan of adding clubs that have to do with student's non academic hobbies and social needs.
Not only does the campus have virtually nothing to do, but it's also not that aesthetically pleasing or well maintained. Maybe it's just me being picky. There are some good spots here, like Whitfield Leadership building, Science Building, the outside of the renovated cafeteria, and the Reflection Pond. That's all in the center of campus. Besides those areas, everything else is really bland to me. Most buildings are beige cream cinder block inside, which feels outdated to me. The sports venues are very small and could use upgrades.
All of the dorm styles are the same, aka you only have type of housing option when you live on campus. That option is sharing a room with 1 or 2 other people, and sharing a bathroom with another room. The worst part about this is that about half of the rooms are 3 person rooms, and they are the exact same size as 2 person rooms. Spoiler alert, all the rooms are designed for 2 people but there's no space for more dorms so they have to squeeze an extra person into a 2 person! How is this done? A bunk bed is added in place of a single bed, and the 3rd person has to share a closet and underbed space with one of their roommates. The walls are also very thin, I can hear minor noises from the room next to me and can fully hear people's conversations as they walk by my door. Seriously, we spend $9,000 on room and board every semester and this is the best there is?
There are 3 dining options on campus. Java City (small coffee place w/ food), Chick-fil-A (limited menu and no Coke products), and the dining hall known as "the caf". The caf is always hit or miss for me, lately it's been a miss. The staff who work there are wonderful and nice, but the food is subpar. It's all buffet style and usually consists of a pizza bar, a few hot food selections, burgers and fries, sandwiches, and a salad bar. Sometimes the food here has been known to make people sick.
Administration and rules:
I get it's a religious school, but do you need to charge people money for drinking alcohol OFF CAMPUS at a legal age? I don't drink, I'm underage as it is, but why is it necessary for the administration to know what we do off campus? This is something straight from the student handbook btw. This rule applies for other things as well, like have sex outside of marriage. Yes, you can get fined MONEY if you have sex with your boyfriend/girlfriend off campus. By charging money for stuff like this shows that administration is being judgemental of their student's beliefs, even though they are supposedly tolerant of everyone's beliefs. Uh huh. Having rules like this, from what I have seen in my hall and my friends, makes people sneaky. We are adults. There is no need to have to sneak around about stuff like sex, no matter how much the school thinks it's wrong. They should let the students decide for themselves their opinion instead of totally banning it.
People and their beliefs:
I'm putting this bluntly: if you are not a conservative, Republican, evangelical, southern Baptist who talks about Jesus in every waking moment, you're not going to have a good time and I'd highly recommend not attending here. For the record, I am a Christian. But I'm not southern Baptist, I'm just a mainstream, probably even a progressive Christian. I'm also left leaning politically, and I have found no one who shares my political beliefs. People value stuff like journaling and testimonies, and make you feel inadequate and not faithful if you don't participate. I was in a Bible study here for a short while, and a member texted that they had to miss one day. Where I'm from, this would be no big deal. The Bible study leaders then complained about the girl telling them that and said that Bible study should always come before schoolwork, she wasn't putting Christ first, etc. etc. That really bothered me and came off as extremely judgmental. People here get so caught up in the Christian bubble that they forget that not everyone in the world practices Christianity like they do. People here compare themselves to secular colleges and make it clear that Christians at this school are "superior" to those at secular schools.
I have been moderately please with the academics here. All the professors I have had have been pleasant to work with and the workload is manageable. Profs are available for office hours, classes are not a hassle to schedule, and class sizes are good for learning. Downtown is nice for occasional visits.
Overall:If I covered absolutely everything I've experienced here, this would be way too long. My general advice is, if you want a real college experience, this may not be the place for you, and you'd be better off at a public university. Just because you don't go to a Christian college doesn't mean you don't love Jesus! Don't let people tell you that. I will be transferring schools in the fall as this school is not a good fit for me. Sorry if this is long, I tried to make it short, but failed.