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Date: Nov 28 2005
Major: Computer Science (This Major's Salary over time)
A few reviews mentioned that the whole school seems a bit cold and impersonal, both socially and academically. That's actually a fair statement.

SOCIALLY

I can't say I didn't make some great friends. However, I CAN say that I made a whole slew of friends that I never really care to see again. What have you heard about students in Ann Arbor? It's actually a pretty discrete spectrum. About 85% of students fit into two groups. Category one is the quintessential Ann Arbor hippie. Category two is the pseudo-free-thinker with a mind closed like a bear trap, this goes for liberals and conservatives (two sides of the same coin, but who can blame them, they are type-A personalities who have learned that in order to succeed, they must take in what "superiors" tell them and regurgitate it). There's a lot of cool shit to do in Ann Arbor; don't work too hard and forget to do them while you're there.

ACADEMICALLY

Classes are pretty big, especially for the first two years. The smallest class I took had 8 kids, and it was only because no one wanted to take the undergraduate theory class (great class BTW). Other than that 25ish students is about the smallest I got in the a College of Engineering course. You are pretty faceless in the College of Engineering. I personally prefer this in a lecture setting. If I want to fucking sleep, I get to sleep (be it in the back of class or be it in my own bed because I didn't feel like getting up). It's not high school, and you will not be treated like a child. This is a good thing, but it's not best for everyone. Secondly, Michigan is hard. If you think anyone in any other computer science program in the state of Michigan is working half as hard, think again. No class will just suffice to give you the answer without dragging you through the theory. If you don't care about culturing the virtue of problem solving and just want some easy job skills, UM is not for you. Relatedly, the best part of college at Michigan is that you are surrounded by brilliant people. MOST of the professors are really smart, and if you ask them about their research, you will not be bored (if you are, perhaps a different major is a decent thought). Anyway, while you're sitting in lecture one day, thinking about how much fun you've been having, learning some very cool new shit, working your ass off, living on your own for the first time (maybe), you'll realize that there are some wonderful things about a big, historical U like Michigan, that smaller, younger schools just cannot offer. Lastly, I think it is important to hit this. Most students are UM are serious students. They may be mindless hookers at times, but they are trying to get an education. They're not all my favorite people, but it's nice to know that they're not dragging your university's educational name through the mud.

FACULTY

In the College of Engineering, I found professors to be very hard to get to know. It's not that the teachers make themselves especially scarce, it's just that they are so mobbed by kissasses and kids who just want their homework done for them. Most of the chances one gets to interact with a professor is time-blocked for

homework/project help.
This means that if you are not stuggling, the only way you can really get to know a prof is to pretend you are. It's a bit different; I didn't know how to approach it and just skipped talking to profs. Short story long, don't expect much of a personal touch from the faculty.

EXTRACURRICULARS

I am the bleeding heart that so many people associate with UMichigan, so I was active in a lot of nonprofit organizations. That's very cool. The rec centers are a great place to work out, shoot some hoops, jog, play wally/raquetball, etc. There are lots of IM sport options. There are honor societies for almost all majors, which look great on a resume and are an all around great time.

Sorry, that was a shitload. I really liked this site, and decided to share some of my shitty advice. Hope it helps someone.

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