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Florida Atlantic University

How this student rated the school
Educational QualityB+ Faculty AccessibilityA-
Useful SchoolworkA- Excess CompetitionC
Academic SuccessC+ Creativity/ InnovationC+
Individual ValueB+ University Resource UseB+
Campus Aesthetics/ BeautyD+ FriendlinessB+
Campus MaintenanceC- Social LifeD+
Surrounding CityA- Extra CurricularsC-
Describes the student body as:
Friendly, Approachable

Describes the faculty as:
Friendly, Helpful, Arrogant, Condescending, Unhelpful, Self Absorbed

Quite Bright
Lowest Rating
Campus Aesthetics/ Beauty
Highest Rating
He cares more about Campus Aesthetics/ Beauty than the average student.
Date: Jan 05 2006
Major: PreMed and Medical (This Major's Salary over time)
***NOTE: The FAU campus I attend is in Boca Raton, so this review is about that campus.***—THE AREA:
  • Boca Raton is a city that is mostly populated by snobby rich white people. However, I have heard very little incidence (if at all) of crime here. I feel very safe at the university and safe driving in this area.
  • FAU is about a minute away from I-95, so you'll have easy access to Miami (about 45 minutes to an hour south), Fort Lauderdale (30 minutes south), West Palm Beach (45 minutes north)… all cities with clubs, movie theaters, and other entertainment. Downtown Atlantic Avenue in Delray Beach (10 minutes south) has a slew of decent restaurants, clothing stores, art shops, and throws festivals (like the Jazz Festival) every couple months.
  • Across the street: P.F. Chang's (AMAZING pan-Asian bistro), 2-story Barnes and Noble (a lot of students hang out there… they have a Starbucks inside), Whole Foods Market, Circuit City, Jamba Juice, Subway, etc
  • Nearby (within 5 minutes): the beach (plan on getting a sticker), Boca Town Center Mall ($$$, but has some decent stores), Publix, a good sushi place, a book store in case the FAU bookstore doesn't have the book you need for class, Boca Raton Community Hospital, a huge Muvico theater (very popular), Boomer's arcade, Quizno's, Panera Bread, Don Carter's bowling, 7-11 (late night runs for nachos and beer), etc.—THE HOUSING/DORMS:
  • Something you should know is that currently, this school is mostly populated by commuters (I'd say about 80% commuter). FAU has just built its tallest dorm yet, called Heritage Park Towers, that's a step in the right direction. Another popular dorm is IRT, or Indian River Towers. There are some smaller dorms with Indian Names (like Timucua) but I believe those are going to be torn down in the next couple years for more HPT-type buildings.

    Those dorms are almost directly in the middle of campus. The room setups vary. I had friends who lived in IRT that had 1 bathroom with two rooms connected by a small living room. Each of the rooms then had two beds with two desks. They're not entirely spacious and they're in no way luxurious, but it's college and you'll make the best of it. I had a girl friend who lived in HPT and it's a similar setup.

    A better idea (although it's a tad more expensive) is to live in the Apartments. These are on the East Side of campus. Again, not luxurious by any means. Just practical. They're 1 room with 2 beds or nicer 2-floored, 4 individual rooms (with doors that lock). The latter setup is awesome because you get a living room and a kitchen. I definitely recommend that.

    A lot of people in their second or third year try to find an apartment off-campus. Sometimes people complain that Boca is too expensive, but it's not so bad if you find someone to room with (and there are always paper/online posts about a room for rent). You could get a place for about $400-600 (depending on your utilities arrangements) in such a situation.—PARKING:

    You need a decal to park here. It's about $44 for the year. Plan on it.

    There is quite a bit of parking all around the campus. FAU has recently built two large parking garages that are very popular. For instance, everyone and their mother parks in the parking garage by the library, so if you don't come early in the morning (that is, before 10 am) or late at night, you're likely to drive all the way to the top before you realize you should try somewhere else.

    You should also remember that faculty parking has red lines, student parking is white, and they WILL ticket you for offenses.

    In summary, plan about 10 minutes to find a spot and get to class from said spot.

    At night, FAU offers a service called Night Owls, where people will pick you up in a golf cart and take you where you want to go (for instance, to your car). This is free, by the way, and besides being staffed by very chill people, the Night Owls offer some flexible employment, if you are so inclined.—THE CAMPUS ITSELF:

    The campus itself is rather large—it would take about 10 minutes to walk across it from its fartherest point.

    It's rather old, but it doesn't have the "aged" look that schools like Harvard might have. There are a lot of palm trees on campus, small green quads, benches haphazardly placed, and the buildings are very unimpressive, aesthetically. In fact, some of them even have shells on their outside walls. I don't know who thought this would be a good idea, but they were wrong.

    In the five years I've been at FAU, I can name five new buildings that have been built since I started… so obviously the campus is expanding. For instance, we just put in a Nursing school. Word in the newspaper was that we are building a stadium on campus (we don't have one yet) with a hotel, put in an alumni center, new health center, plus we'll be expanding the medical school project we've started.

    A covered main pathway called The Breezeway cuts through the center of the school like a spine and is used by everyone, including a lot of people who longboard right through it (we have a lot of beach bums).

    A lot of people hang out by the Breezeway Cafeteria on the south end of the Breezeway. You'll walk toward the Cafe and will most likely: be handed flyers for school events or small direct-to-trash plastic cards informing you about DJ so-and-so who is playing at a club in Miami; asked to sign a petition; see vendors for cell phones, coffee, shirts, etc; pass fraternity/sorority tables with signs and videos and a lot of people all wearing the same shirt; and most likely a small table where an evangelist is talking with a student who noticed his Bible and wants to ask some questions.

    There is a 24-hour study lounge connected to the University Library. The Library itself is a couple stories tall and outfitted with plenty of computers. A lot of people spend their time between classes in the library, loudly and rudely talking on cell phones while mildly playing Flash games. People have no shame. I have seen students looking at porn and others playing "World of Warcraft" here. Nobody says anything. I guess that's a double-edged sword.—FOOD/DRINKS ON CAMPUS:

    There is a Starbucks on campus that is, of course, very popular. There are tables with umbrellas where people will drink coffee and, if you're there on the rigth night, critique your writing (if you're into that).

    Alternatively, you can also get coffee/hot cocoa from vending machines in the 24-hour Study Lounge. It tastes like it's from a vending machine, however, so grin and bear it (you will during Finals).

    Also… This is a Pepsi campus, so if you like Coke, you're out of luck.

    The bookstore has plenty of candy, drinks, pop tarts, and snacks. There is another store on campus by the University Center that has similar food, but they also have frozen dinners and 7-11-esque hotdogs/soups there.

    The Breezeway Cafeteria has a salad bar, Burger King, Pizza Hut, and a place where they make their own dishes … like roast beef and mashed potatoes. They accept credit cards here. Also, they have just built a Quiznos inside, but the Quiznos does not carry the awesome little Quiznos cookies.

    Near the University Center is something else. A place called Wackadoos tries to be a hip sports bar/grill-type place. They do serve beer here, however, most everyone I know does not care for the food there.

    As I understand it, the majority of freshman are required to buy into a meal plan. The meal plan is connected to the UC Buffet. This buffet has sandwiches, pizza, salad, burgers, fries, vegetarian dishes, and a grilled/stir fry item (in the morning, they do omelettes there). For non-meal plan people, the buffet is about $7 and I think it's worth it.—THE STUDENTS:

    To be honest, not a lot of them are what you'd call 'college material'.

    They're at FAU because either

    1) They didn't want to go to a school away from home for whatever reason (family/maturity issues)

    2) They went to a school away from home (like UCF) and did so poorly they came home and now attend FAU

    3) They didn't plan on going to college, but they got a scholarship so they might as well

    4) They didn't get in anywhere else

    5) They didn't get in anywhere else, so they decided to do FAU for two years, get good grades, and then transfer to another university

    Don't get me wrong—there are bright bulbs here. Most of my friends were accepted to high-tier schools but didn't want to pay the exorbitant tuitions at those schools. Another thing about being at a school with a relatively low average is that truly motivated and hard-working students stand out, whereas they would be drowned out by academic clones of themselves in places like Stanford.

    Since a lot of the school consists of commuter students, it is often difficult to get people out to social events, although FAU does try. FAU has events such as a bonfire, Homecoming, Karaoke, Public Debates, Volunteering for causes (like Habitat for Humanity), Bowling, Free Movies, Carnivowl, and sponsors trips here and there (i.e. to the keys to go kayaking).

    There are many, many clubs on campus, including clubs for people interested in: medicine, skydiving, building cars, marijuana legislation, ethnic events, gay/lesbian/straight alliance, computer games, philosophy, diving/snorkeling, karate, ultimate frisbee, etc.

    We have Greek organizations but no houses on campus.—Is FAU a great school?

    The answer is probably: Not yet. But it most likely will be in the next ten years after it has raised it's admission standards, built more dorms on campus, expanded the programs it has offered, continued it's award-winning research, and built a stadium on campus.

    What it is:

    It's a decent school and a good stepping stone to see if college is for you.

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