StudentsReview :: St Olaf College - Extra Detail about the Comment
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St Olaf College

How this student rated the school
Educational QualityB+ Faculty AccessibilityA+
Useful SchoolworkA- Excess CompetitionA
Academic SuccessA Creativity/ InnovationA-
Individual ValueA+ University Resource UseB+
Campus Aesthetics/ BeautyA FriendlinessA-
Campus MaintenanceA- Social LifeB
Surrounding CityB Extra CurricularsA-
Describes the student body as:
Friendly, Approachable, Snooty

Describes the faculty as:
Friendly, Helpful

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Quite Bright
Lowest Rating
Social Life
Highest Rating
Faculty Accessibility
She rated most things higher than other students did.
Date: Oct 23 2014
Major: Computer Science (This Major's Salary over time)
I honestly have mixed feelings about attending St. Olaf. I did two years of PSEO (which included living in dorms, and the whole college life) at a state college before I came here, with mixed results. Academically I faltered at my last school for personal reasons and lack of ambition. That was not a problem here. The quality of academics at St. Olaf is top notch. Even the worst teachers here are better than the teachers that I had at my previous college. I have no complaints about the faculty here.

However the thing that caught me off guard at St. Olaf was the snooty culture. It really shouldn't have, given that literally every review of this school mentions it in one form or another, but to be honest I didn't research schools as much as I should have when I applied. In any case, the fact of the matter is that while 99% of people here are well intentioned, a lot of students here are sheltered and kind of clueless when it comes to diversity. This is despite the fact that pretty much every student here has visited another country at some point in their life (The first week I heard about so many "life changing mission trips" I wanted to gag). Even the school I went to before (which was smaller than St. Olaf!) had more of a cultural landscape than here. I'm a Minnesota native, so the "Minnesota Nice" thing didn't throw me off, but it is something to be aware of. Passive aggressiveness paired with clueless rich people can paint a pretty gruesome picture for some. The worst part is most students have no clue that they're doing it.

There are some perks to being a weirdo attending a school as homogeneous as St. Olaf though. You stand out in a good way. Professors are more likely to remember you and talk to you outside of class. People find you interesting and want to know about your life and ideas. If you don't mind being judged every now and again I would say that it is worth the perks of standing out. It's a lot harder to fall through the cracks. That was a huge factor in my decision to come here.

As far as life outside of school is concerned, I've personally never been much of a partier, though I can see how the intense focus on academics paired with the small town culture makes people stir crazy. It can actually be a pleasant experience if you're like me. I was looking for a community that allowed me to get my life back on track, and St. Olaf has been a perfect environment for that. If you are looking for a chance to "escape reality" while still remaining ambitious and studious, this is the school for you.

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St Olaf College
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