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|Not so bright|
| Most (2/3) of the undergraduate students and pretty much all of the administrators come from small town Middle America. They tend to be middle class, white, and slightly conservative in practice (while paying lip service to progressive values). They're friendly, but can be a bit xenophobic. If you're from a privileged background, try to hide it (reverse-snobbery is rampant). If you're a minority, you'll stick out like sore thumb (next to no diversity), though they do really try to make you feel welcome. |
The rest (1/3) of the class consists primarily of relatively well-off out-of-staters from major metro areas (usually NY/NJ, Chicago, or somewhere out in Cali). They don't normally get along too well with in-staters (again, there's the reverse-snobbery, but I must concede some obnoxious out-of-staters take a condescending attitude towards the entire Midwest and won't stop complaining about Wisconsin the moment they step off of the plane).
The professors and grad students come from a wide array of backgrounds. They tend to be pretty liberal (some are kinda socialist/quasi-communist IMHO). Most are very research-oriented, so it's basically teach yourself, though there are a few gems who really do enjoy teaching undergrads.
The school is somewhat competitive, but nothing like what you'd see at a Michigan or a Northwestern, both of which are a bit more cut-throat (I'm just naming schools that don't have grade-inflation).
If you're into bar-hopping and that whole weekend morning walk-of-shame thing, you will absolutely LOVE this school. If not, you'll be kind of bored during the weekends. A lot of in-state kids go home Sat-Sun.
Madison is quaint with friendly locals (w/out the UW the population is probably around 250,000), but if you're from a bigger city (I'm from Chicago), you'll find it to be kind of small (but it's still nice!).
The school "name" will command a decent amount of respect (but not Harvard-level mind you) for the more ambitious members of the class who wish to attend a good graduate/professional school.
Overall, UW-Madison is a good school. You can get a lot out of it and still have fun if you put in the effort.
|Feb 12 2010|| 4th Year Female --
Class 2004 |
| With an undergrad degree from another school, and a Master's from UW, all I can say is think carefully before you attend UW Madison. The academics are NOT very strong at the undergraduate level - or at any level except for doctoral programs in a few subject areas. The faculty are unavailable, indifferent and unapproachable almost without exception. There are many fine schools - including in the UW system - where this is not the case, and you receive a better education and a better educational experience. UW Madison students have a social life centered around beer and drugs and not much else. Crime around the campus area is pervasive. Students are smug and conceited and pumped full of BS about being better than anyone else because they are UW Madison students, when it's far from the truth. The best advice I can give anyone is to stay away from this school, especially at the undergraduate level. The administration does not want to be bothered undergraduate students, and it really shows. The education, the quality of student life, and the quality of the faculty and fellow students is much better at many - most - other schools. |
|Feb 05 2010|| 2nd Year Male --
Class 1990 |
| I am from California and decided to go here and it is the best decision i ever made. Our school is so much fun, always something to do, fun college town, huge sports with the best tailgating, good frat parties/ apartment/house parties, good bar life=easy to get into, you will never be bored on weekends. Classes are not too hard as long as you check ratemyprofesor.com before hand. This school is academically well known, and a party school! wut more could you want? |
|Dec 21 2009|| 1st Year Female --
Class 2013 |