StudentsReview :: Macalester College - Extra Detail about the Comment
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Macalester College

How this student rated the school
Educational QualityA Faculty AccessibilityA
Useful SchoolworkA- Excess CompetitionB+
Academic SuccessA Creativity/ InnovationB
Individual ValueA+ University Resource UseA
Campus Aesthetics/ BeautyA- FriendlinessA
Campus MaintenanceA Social LifeB-
Surrounding CityB+ Extra CurricularsB+
Describes the student body as:
Friendly, Approachable

Describes the faculty as:
Friendly, Helpful

Quite Bright
Lowest Rating
Social Life
Highest Rating
Individual Value
He cares more about Social Life than the average student.
Date: May 07 2011
Major: Neuroscience/Cognitive Science (This Major's Salary over time)
Macalester is what you make it, just like the rest of life. I have known people who loved it and people who hated it and there are a variety of possible reasons for both. Some students just don't relate well to the Mac atmosphere, which involves a lot of 'intellectual' discussions, and requires you to put your self out into the community early. However if you are prepared to help build the community when you get here you are (almost) guaranteed to find great friends.

If you can't stand gays, lesbians, hippies, immigrants, do-gooders, and/or hipsters you will find yourself trapped indoors with them for months, so you probably should find some where else to go.

As far as academic go, its a mixed bag and it varies a lot by department. I have heard great things about the english department, the philosophy department is wacky but incredibly accommodating and friendly, and I'm a big fan of the Neuroscience professors, if not all of the psych department. One thing you should know coming here - it is tailored for people who plan on post-graduate education. In particular pre-med, and pre-law students are well taken care of. Other wise you really need to be self-motivated. It is very possible to get to your senior year skating by and find yourself up a creek without a paddle in terms of requirements. On the other hand if you want freedom to try wacky things in all sorts of areas, and are capable of working independently you have access to some incredible resources for an undergrad. Also, the science departments (at least psychology) place a huge emphasis on getting research experience. This doesn't mean you'll necessarily be published as an undergraduate, but you will have some idea what it means to design and run your own experiment - something graduate schools place a huge emphasis on.

On the whole I am happy with my time at Mac, although the price tag will haunt me for years (no financial aid). It has given me a lot of room to make mistakes and try different things, as well as given me great friends.

The school is also incredibly expensive if you don't receive financial aid - if you can't afford it you really can't afford it, but that is typical of all small liberal arts colleges.

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