This citadel of learning provides to those at the Cox Business school an opportunity to get a cozy job at Dallas business firm and a shiny new sports car. But frankly, life is not about sports cars or money. Though money is important, too much focus is placed on it here at this institution. I did not rush, and am I am History major with Chinese language minor here at SMU. I am normal to the real world, and abnormal to this bubble-society.
While my experience here had been negative, there are some strong points.For starters, SMU undoubtedly attracts great talent into their staff. Being endowed with large amounts of money, SMU has attracted many professors who may have entered tenure at Harvard or Yale. Professors are your greatest resource at SMU. They have, however, ended up here with a short stick having to teach these students. Why? Because unlike what the rest of the comments would indicate in this forum, there is little intellectual intercourse here at this school. Sure, you have hard workers and "smart" students, but they have no common sense and little analytical skills. If you can't analyze and critically think, you aren't intelligent. I literally feel like I'm walking into a class with a bunch of idiots each day. The only class that remotely stimulating is my graduate level course. The rest is all blunder.
As for the social scene, If you aren't white washed and loaded, good luck getting into a Fraternity. I despise that lifestyle, where young men commit sexual assault regularly, and women limit their intellect to phrases such as , "like", "Yeah", or "whatever". Its literally the 1980s here on campus, with the glorification of Bush Reagan 84' shirts across campus.
Greek Life is the most visible, and most irritating part of campus. However, there are other parts of campus that outside of this debauchery. Religious life is strong, but that's not necessarily my foray, especially if you're liberal leaning. The ethnic student groups are nice, but it can be a little overwhelming if you are not "part" of their group, but the same time, it does indicate that we have diversity.
Dallas itself is stifling. I am a nature loving guy, so when I saw SMU campus and the surrounding area of University Park, I thought that this place would be great. Unfortunately, outside of these two places, Dallas is an ugly artificial city, filled with incompetent drivers and prosperity contrasted with poverty. Concrete is the new grass here in Dallas, and overprices high rises alongside the highway are the new trees here. Its expensive to live here close to campus. There are bums begging on every light along Highway 75, and cops are unabashedly racist. Dallas is a sprawling capitalist dream that is slowly changing into nightmare.
Overall, I feel like I've spent more time rationalizing why I'm still here in this University, in the wretched city of Dallas, than I have actually learning. Since I am a junior, I have no intention of leaving, because there is educational value here, and I don't want to bother with transferring. However, if you interested in close interpersonal relationship with intellectually engaged peers, that sort of experience is hard to come by here. If you are interested in loosing control of you body, partying like its 1999, and establishing yourself monetarily amongst the young elite of Texas in an endeavor to beat your increasing and impending debts, then this is the place for you.It can be a positive experience, but it won't be an easy one. You can be challenged intellectually here, and you can find close friends that can last a lifetime here. Its just not easy, and for those wanting a simpler experience, this is not the place to go.