The worst thing about AU is the cost.
Administration is obnoxious and loves giving students a hard time. It's poorly organized and people's scholarships and aid have gotten lost and failed to process. Some jobs on-campus don't pay students either because of administrative difficulties.
The worst thing about American University is the cost. One year (room and board plus tuition) is around $52,000.
I think the worst thing about my school is the lack of political diversity. The population leans so far left but everyone also enjoys debating so things often end up with people debating about things they actually agree upon and usually simple misunderstandings are blown out of proportion in order to get some debates going. There are some conservatives but they're still fairly left-wing as well. I may be almost as leftist as they come but I don't think the population should be that homogenous.
The school invests heavily to match the appearance of a top-tier institution, but does not invest enough in resources to support students.
The school overcharges for meal swipes. My meal plan costs $17 a meal swipe, but paying out of pocket for dinner at the dining hall would only cost $13.50.
No school spirit or community. The campus could be a lot more friendly and we dont have a strong athletic department to rally around
The Housing and Dining administration is a major problem at American University. They do suit your most important and basic housing needs, however the hours of opperation and food variety for on campus food could be vastly improved to fit with student's dietary and budget restrictions. As for the housing department, they are not as responsive to students' needs as they could be. There was a mice infestation in my dorm suite last year and it persisted for the entire year before the department would do anything about it.
There is nothing that I would classify as completely negative at American University. The only "bad" thing about American University; like many schools, is the price of housing and the kind of housing as well as the price of the meal plan. Both are incredibly overpriced, however this is a problem that most come in contact with at most universities. That is not to say that the University is perfect, however in comparison with other Universities it is by far the best experience I have had.
The walls between rooms are somewhat thin, which is especially noticeable if there are noisy neighbors. Also, the cafeteria, TDR can get pretty boring after a few months. It has mostly unhealthy, fatty foods, but a great salad bar.
The teaching staff is fantastic, but the university administration is far less than ideal. The departmentalization and physical separation of different administrative offices makes it difficult and repetative when you need to get anything done. I've also had significant problems with financing and found that the University offered no assistance. This was anything but the case in the smaller school I transferred from. Be ready to be an advocate for yourself.
It is a very expensive school. Where the funds go is not exactly clear. For example, classes are often canceled, and food services are not extremely convienient but are very expensive.
This school is not diverse at all.
Our student conduct system. It is designed to get students in trouble, and it is extremely difficult to challenge an RA.
I think my school is great and wish the new construction was finished.
It has a multicultural evironment and international standard., especiallty school of internatioanal service. Besides, its location in Washington, DC so it is an ideal school for learning international affairs and relations.
The food and the price.
The worst thing about American University is the lack of grass and field space to spend leisure time and for teams to practice. Some teams have to practice on a painful field hockey turf field and there is only one quadrangle on the campus for students to spend their time.
The Student body can be a bit rude at times
The worst thing is the constant construction. But, it signals to me the school is continuously investing in new buildings and resources to advance the education it provides to the student body.
The Cafeteria gets really crowed around 12.30 for lunch and 6.00 for dinner.
There is a lack of school spirit. There is poor attendance to many athletic events and not many students get involved in any spirit groups. I guess it is just a more academically focused school.
I would have to say the food. Though they have a large selction, it's generally very poorly done...except when it's parent's weekend or there's prospective students about. Then the food becomes miraculously better. Take out or one of the many restaurants around campus is a better choice.
I'd say the more obnoxious sororities and fraternities. Some of them aren't bad, and even help students to find internships, job networks, and volunteer opportunities. Others just want to drink alcohol and have sex with everyone who'll have them.
The beaurcrocity of it.
The university's inability to keep regular shuttle services going in order to allow students to get to campus from the subway system creates much animosity toward the shuttle drivers and the university in general, while also frusterating students and forcing them to increase their commute time from off campus housing by up to 30 minutes each day.
bureaucracy of the staff.
The financial aid program at this university is horrendous. The university goes back on their word and has forced students to drop out because they can no longer afford it. The university tells people that they can expect a specific amount of aid, but when the time comes to pay the bill, they drop it. I was told that I would receive $1,000 in Federal Work Study money, but they dropped it a week or two before I had to pay for classes. I ended up receiving it again this year, but it was not without a fight.
I think that it puts too much focus on its Shool of International Service and doesn't develop other programs as well.
The worst thing is that they are not the best with financial aid. Alum give money to individual schools instead of the university as a whole, so the money can't go for scholarships. They try, but aren't very good about it.
The worst thing about American University is that it is extremely expensive to attend and the financial aid center does a very poor job helping out students whom they deem unqualified for financial aid. Many students end up transferring after their freshman year because the school changes their financial aid package and their families can no longer afford to send them AU.
It can be very bureacratic and hard to make changes for the better.
It is very expensive.
The lack of school spirit is sometimes frustrating. AU is not a huge sports school. The events that normally draw huge crowds are when big-name speakers come to school. That in it of itself is awesome, but it's not the same atmosphere as a giant football game...
The worst thing about American University is the administrative hoops that they make people jump through, it makes things difficult that don't have to be and causes annomosity. That or the fact that my "financial aid" is a 2000 dollar stafford loan so my mother's retirement fund from when she was a teacher in New York is now paying my tuition.
The school is very expensive, too expensive.
Socio-Economic demographics. Most students pay the full tuiton and or come from wealthy families. I however, come from a very middle class family in New York City. Likewise, I'm originally from Bangladesh; the student make-up here is white-caucasian upper middle class students.
It is highly career oriented and makes it difficult for students who are still trying to find themselves actually find themselves
It's very expensive. I'm sure it will be worth it in the end, but it's really scary to think about it right now.
The lack of finacial aid and the lack of African American students as well as faculty and staff.
It's tough to go here when you come from a family with money problems. So many kids at American come from wealthy backgrounds and it feels, at times, a bit overwhelming to listen to them talk about their life experiences and places they have been. It is even sometimes hard to explain your disadvantaged financial situation to another student, they just don't get it. Many kids here have never had to worry about money in their entire life.
Because it's small in both physically size and student population numbers in comparison to other schools, sometimes school spririt and activities are not as much as they should be.
The worst thing may be that it may try too hard to compete with similar schools in the area, such as George Washington University and Georgetown, instead of forging its own brand.
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