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Positives: The academic program is about the same as you would good at a good SUNY. The professors are friendly and approachable, and are almost always available if you need help. The work is not terribly challenging, but not ridiculously easy either. Most professors, rightly so, focus on actually learning, not just memorizing stuff for a test; you will actually learn something from them and they know what they're talking about. Class sizes are small and the professor usually knows who you are. The campus looks good, and Public Safety does a good job keeping everyone safe and being available if you have a problem. If you're Catholic, the friars are all friendly and good at their jobs and won't preach fire-and-brimstone at you. Negatives: The administrators, kitchen and cleaning staff, and just about all the employees other than the professors are very rude and clearly see the students as a source of money and nothing else. They will be a pain if you have a problem and do anything they can to avoid actually solving your problems. Administration runs the school very poorly and in an unorganized fashion, and do a poor job prioritizing where money should and shouldn't be spent. Public restrooms, classrooms, etc. are rarely clean to the standard they ought to be and I question the effectiveness of their management (speaking as a person employed in custodial work elsewhere, my boss is not very strict and he would even fire these people). The food is horrible, the kitchen staff lazy, and there is little variety in the dining locations. Most dorm buildings are awful until you become a junior or senior, and there are too many students for a campus of this size; dorms tend to get crowded quickly, especially in buildings reserved for freshmen. Everything, from tuition to vending machines, is overpriced for the quality you receive. The biggest complaint about this school I have, however, is the student body. Many comments complained about the lack of racial, etc., diversity, but I don't think that's Siena's fault so much as upstate New York is simply a very white area and always has been. The students act more like middle schoolers than the young adults they are. They are very cliquely, rude, loud, selfish and generally obnoxious. Partying seems to be the only form of social life one can have at Siena unless you want to attend a Student Activities Board event playing bingo or trivia with about 8 people or go to a movie night in the science building. Siena likes to brand itself as a pious Catholic school and preach "Franciscan Values" at every available opportunity, but it is a party school for many people that go here. Many students are spoiled rich Long Island kids whose parents have apparently never taught them responsibility or what it's like to live in the real world, or they all attended a local high school together and already have a clique coming in. (No offense to any non-spoiled Long Islanders). I made some friends during the Freshmen Orientation week, but all of them dropped out or transferred at the end of the year, and I found it extremely difficult to make new friends after the first half of freshmen year was over. People form a clique after a month or so and stick with it. Everyone acts, talks, and dresses exactly the same and they look at you like a freak if you're different from them. Apparently to these people it's considered weird to actually have some degree of intelligence, care about your schoolwork and your future, and not want to get blackout drunk on a Tuesday night in someone's dorm room. Many comments I have read complain about RAs/RDs or Public Safety breaking up their parties, and let me tell you, if you that happens in your hallway a lot you're one of the lucky ones. If you get a lackadaisical RA then prepare to never be able to sleep until 3am every night due to the obnoxious levels of noise. Also, beware the townhouses. Most of the worst partying goes down over there, and once in a while we get an email about either theft or sexual assault and it always happens at a townhouse. In short, do not be fooled by Siena. They will convince you that everyone is very nice and that they have a great "community." They don't. I have no complaints about the academic programs or the capabilities of the friars. Everything else is a huge negative. In short, I would avoid this place at all costs. Save your money and go somewhere else.
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