Christopher Newport University
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Christopher Newport University - Comments and Student Experiences|
Students: The students are what have made me dislike the University. Some are awesome friends, and some are entitled assholes from NOVA that act like they are the center of the universe. I have almost transferred multiple times because people act like immature high schoolers. There is so much drama because words gets around FAST on campus. Gossip spreads like wildfire. Your reputation can be decimated because of one mistake you made as a freshman (of course you can make your reputation better, but people are so unforgiving and unforgetting). A lot of people, particularly PLP, have sticks up their butts. I really wanted to go to a diverse college, but I chose CNU because it seemed top notch academics. I regret over looking the obvious fact that CNU has no diversity and is small (in mind and size). Listen to what your gut is telling you in your college selection process- if you want diversity and a vibrant place where you can meet a lot of new people, then CNU is not your place. It is small and not laid back.
Size: The average class size is 19, but this leads to problems in registration. If you are a regular student like me that is not an athlete, honors student, or in PLP, then registration never goes your way! Yes, you can override in some cases, but you won't always get everything you need or when you need it. I also dislike that there are only about 5,000 students. I thought I would like a smaller college, but I do not! I find myself asking, is this really all there is here? At the end of the day I want more opportunities, more people, better clubs, a bigger campus, and a better experience.
Campus Involvement: I tried to get really involved in campus, because having roots at CNU is what makes it fun. If you don't get involved then you will hate it- that goes for any college. CNU has hundreds of student orgs- some are good and others not very. I am going to be a club president this fall. I have to do a lot of work to make the club better. Honestly, if I did not have this position I would transfer out. Also, over a quarter of the school is involved in Greek life. We do have good Greek life. A sorority is colonizing this fall and I am also looking forward to that. I did formal recruitment this past January, but was crushed in the process, so go into it without having your heart set on a particular sorority. Overall, you have to find your favorite sport, club, or other activities to have roots, or reasons to be at CNU. Also, you will meet new friends through trying new activities. My closest friends were made from trying a new sport.
Academics: Classes can be challenging, but are usually not over whelming. Check the ratings of professors on Rate My Professor. Take electives that will look good for your professional development, as well as fun classes that you are really interested in taking. I am disappointed that CNU doesn't offer more majors and minors, especially an Education major and minor (for those that don't want to do the 5 year MAT). The chemistry, math, and physics classes are VERY hard and I have to repeat a chem course for my major. I switched from the BS in Bio to the BA, because I struggled too much with those math-based courses. CNU has really great Pre-Med, Biology, and Business Schools. It also has ROTC, PLP, and Honors programs. Overall, you have to earn your grades in most courses. This is college and you are expected to work. I do love the professors here! Not all are five star, but most of them do their job and care about you. I left some of my classes this past semester feeling so inspired by what I was learning! That is why you go to college in the first place.
Parties: are a double edged sword. At CNU, there are parties, but not every weekend and can easily get busted. The pig are EVERYWHERE on campus and patroling nearby neighborhoods. You HAVE to know people- it is all about connections. Everyone is a social drinker. If you like to drink to get messed up, don't go to CNU because everyone will judge you hard core. Even the times you accidently drink to much or it is not your fault, you still are judged hard core. Also, some frats are full of asses, so watch out. All in all, the party scene can be fun sometimes, but you can't act even remotely "crazy" or everyone thinks you are a bad person. Behavior such as having a good time is frowned upon. Things that no one would even notice at a large school party are considered abnormal and crazy at CNU parties. If you are going to be a big partier, don't come here. If you want to be just a social/casual drinker, then you will be fine, but if you appreciate alcohol or drink weekly then don't come. As a freshman who made some mistakes along the way, people were so judgemental of me and my choices. That is what I hate. If we were at another state school, no one would have even cared or notice. But at CNU, everything you do or say gets around to everyone else. That is what I hate.
Campus: Yes, CNU is very pretty! The dorms are like palaces. However, don't let this be one of the main reasons you pick the school. Also, if you are not in PLP, honors, or an athlete, then you will be screwed over by housing at some point, if not every year. Reflection: There are pros and cons to coming here. The pros are that CNU has a growing reputation that will become prestigious. We have some good programs, a beautiful campus, and great dorms. However, those things should NOT be why you pick a college! Pick a college based on the student body and it's compatibility with your values. Pick a college based on the academic and social opportunities. Overall, I am staying at least another semester at CNU before I give up on it. You have to allow yourself time to adjust. However, looking back I kick myself for not picking a different place. Paul Trible can inspire like no other- he knows how to draw you in for the kill. I would have gone to Coastal Carolina (for Marine Science) or GMU or UNC. I need a more diverse and a less snobby student body, a bigger campus with more opportunities. I picked CNU out of an obligatory feeling- I felt it was the way to go at the time, but I have changed a lot in college and so have my interests. I wish I had chosen a place where I could now explore and develop those new interests. I wish I had not put so much concern on the school's reputation and just picked were my heart really felt right. I also realize that I like the School its self (for the most part they are helpful and accommodating with registration, housing, ect), but I do not the actual students. Your friends and peers are what makes college a fun place that is really worth attending, so if you don't have that, you really have nothing on a campus. The president can suck you into choosing CNU, orientation could blow you away, but at the end of the day there is something missing from CNU: fulfilling times and open minds.
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