I will not write a paragraph here. I will simply make a list. Please read, and know beforehand- I am not like most of the students at the school. I have a more negative outlook than most, and as a result focus on the aspects of the school that most people overlook. I know many people that LOVE Bradley to the "y," but most of those people are missing the big picture. Take it for what it is worth, but here is my list after 2 years at the school: 1) The scholarship that many students get has a large downside. Mine began by covering a third of my cost of attending Bradley. In the 2 years I have attended, my college bill has gone up about $5000. My $8500 per year scholarship I received (the presidential one) has not increased accordingly by even a dime. Doing the simple math, that makes the award equivalent to a $3000 when I started. That is no longer a third of my cost, but now a mere 1/10th. Good deal, eh? Also, you should grind those admission counselors. I was told by them that it would increase accordingly. 2) The career center the school raves so highly of is only good for Accounting, Engineering, and Sales majors. Anyone else will get no help. The career fair that the school will all but force you to attend has very few jobs for anyone outside those majors. As a finance major, there was one bank there that had anything finance related at the spring career fair. 3) The Library was ranked 2nd worst in the country by the Princeton review. I work there. Its pretty accurate. 4) Most of the clubs the school tries to sell you on are a joke. Very few are worth joining. 5) Working for the school and in talking to some people most people do not get the opportunity to meet, I have seen how much red tape exists at the school. If there is one reason the school is so expensive, it is that. 6) DO NOT take Gen-eds at the school. 70% of classes in that area are no good. 7) DO use ratemyprofessor.com. The site is pretty accurate. IMPORTANT: plan out your first semester before orientation. you will not get a chance to go online while there and use the site. My first semester would have been much smoother had I done that. 8) Buy your books online at amazon or half.com. You will save so much money. And after your first semester there is a good chance you can find students to swap with. 9) Work on campus when you are at school. Most jobs provide you with a way to get paid to do your homework, But you will almost certainly have to know the right person to get in at the job. 10) Bradley is right outside a pretty rough part of Peoria. A student got raped on the new, brightly lit streets earlier this past semester, and a student jogging around campus got shot in the leg, forcing it to be amputated. I see him every day in the business school. It is not a myth, the school simply does not make things such as this public. 11) Frats may provide you fun, but I have seen many of them have their members drop their 3rd and 4th years into school. Why? Because they are not all they are cracked up to be. I went through rush, but did not join. Best decision I could have made. That is all I have right now. There is much more, but I have work in the morning. Please email me if you have any other questions. I will GLADLY tell you the truth.
The best thing about Bradley is definitely the size. It's small size means: small classes, more sudent/professor attention and getting to know a lot of people that you go to school with. Coming from a large University after my Freshman year, this was something that really impressed me about Bradley. Most of my time on campus was spent at my sorority house and in classes. There basically is no college town. To be honest, Peoria is really crummy. It is very urban and run-down. You have to be safe when walking around campus alone at night. My sorority gave out pepper-spray for this very purpose, but thankfully I never had to use it. Although there were a few reports of muggings and rapes, Bradley does a good job of increasing security. They have a great escort program; if you call them, they will walk you to and from anywhere on campus. Bradley's administration is great. We just got a new President, JoAnne Glasser, who is wonderful. She is so caring and thoughtful towards the students and really wants to get to know everyone. The biggest recent controversy on campus was after a popular soccer player was killed accidentally by his friends at the beginning of the year. The friends accused of his murder were told that after their time in jail , that they would definitely be allowed to enroll again at Bradley. But then when they tried to enroll for the 2008-2009 school year, Bradley's administration denied them. There is a ton of school pride; especially for the Braves Basketball team. Students have great attendance at the games and even have their own section. One experience I will always remember about Bradley is going to a Peoria Chief's game that unfortunately got rained out. And President Glasser was supposed to throw out the first pitch, so she was a little upset. But anyways, she ended up taking myself and 7 of my friends out to dinner and then for ice cream that night. It was so neat to be having dinner with the president of the university and she was so down to earth and fun to be with. It was a great night! I think the most frequent student complaints would be the low quality of food in the cafeterias on campus. I think they really try to get what the students want, but it's still not very good. Also, a big problem is the lack of air conditioning in a lot of the dorms. Which is basically only a problem your freshman/sophormore years, when most people live on campus.
The best thing about Bradley University is the sheer number of organizations on campus (over 300) and the opportunities that allow you to be involved for how small the campus is. These opportunities include being able to participate in research in certain departments with less competition , creating your own organization easily, internships within departments, more scholarships, leadership positions and much more. It is a great school if you're looking for a school that is small, personal with many opportunities for leadership and involvement.Teachers, advisers and administrators actively try to get to know students, get them involved, make sure you know the material and are on the right track toward reaching your goals. The school is the perfect size if you like small class sizes and not having to walk an hour across campus to get to class. Also Bradley is well known for having a good Basketball team, the number one speech team in the nation and ranking in the top ten in College rankings. People and relatives I have talked to from California, Oregon, Texas, Florida, Oklahoma etc. have all heard of Bradley and are proud that I attend Bradley. I am extremely involved in many organizations on campus so i spend most of my time all over campus. When i'm not in meetings you can find me in campus town at Starbucks or with friends eating at one of the restraunts in campus town or on the Quad hanging out. There is almost always something going on or an organization having an event on campus so you'll never be bored. The only downfall of Bradley is that there is no football team and not much school spirit.
I suggest getting involved. With a small school and an even smaller campus, it is easy to find new people, especially when you begin your freshmen year. With a lot of the construction some students may be discouraged with the lack of athletic facilities, but with some effort you can obtain a membership to a gym off campus provided by the school. Our school has recently obtained a new President, she has made a point to address underage drinking at our campus, and enforces the $375 city fine + $50 university fine for anyone caught underage drunk (zero tolerance). What I absolutely love about Bradley University is the Greek Life, i capitalized it because I believe it is amazing. Their are 14 fraternities and 7 sororities on our campus and each house has their own type of people. With an average fraternity around 40 members it is easy to get to know your brothers, and I believe makes your college life so much better. Also the girls at Bradley are hot, not to be a perve.
The best thing about Bradley is the family-like atmosphere. It's not too big and not too small. I really got to know all of my professors and especially my adviser. He worked hard for me to help me get where I wanted to go, but I also had to work hard to get there. Classes are often difficult, but if you fight through it your professors will notice, because they actually know you. They had you in class and often take the time to actually learn your name and understand your goals. Many students do complain about Peoria, but that's only because they didn't give it a chance. Coming from the shadow of Chicago, Peoria can seem kind of podunk, but that's really not the case. The night-life is fun, there are several movie theaters, lots of shopping, many restaurants, a symphony, a ballet, and a fun downtown area with a beautiful river front. There's a large park close to campus. People who say there's nothing to do just don't look.
The biggest thing that Bradley pushes in its admissions department is the school's size, and for good reason. It isn't the tiny, liberal arts school that you'll usually find and it's not a gigantic public university where you get lost in the shuffle of everyone else. Classes are typically small in size so you get a lot of attention from professors. The student population is large enough where you don't feel like you know everybody, but small enough where you can walk from class to class and say hi to at least one person you know. Peoria is certainly not a college town, but Bradley still gives it a college feeling with Gorman's across the street in Campustown and the bars on Farmington Road. People (especially freshman and sophomores) regularly refer to the campus as the "Bradley Bubble" because sometimes it seems like you never get off of it to do other things around the city. It can be seclusive at times.
If you are looking for a small campus in a city setting, Bradley is the place to be. It only takes 5 minutes to walk from one end of campus to the next. There are many activities to get involved in including the greek system, student senate and many department groups. I enjoy the atmosphere because on a nice fall or spring day, there are always people out wandering campus, and if you want to play football, frisbee, or any other lowkey games on the quad, there is always a large supply of people willing to play with you. The dorms are also great. My freshman year, the dorm became like my family. Not only are there many interesting people worth getting to know, most of the academics are great. Listen to people when they tell you what teachers are good or not because most of the time, they are right. It just a fun place to be no matter how crazy a schedule you set for yourself.
Bradley university is like a bounced check. It had a lot of promise, but didn't deliver. The current programs are suffering at the hands of the Bradley expansion plan, which essentially means that Bradley will be really cool, in maybe 3-4 years. For instance, cafeterias have no funding to replace old or damaged equipment, the health services are a joke, the gym was demolished, leaving only one small area in which to exercise, administration is aloof and uncaring of student concerns, there is highly insufficient parking, the student newspaper is laughable at best, the yearbook has shut down, the list goes on. In fact, the only reason I could even think of going to Bradley is the excellent teaching staff (if not equipment), and the dedication these underpaid, overworked individuals show in their day to day lives.
I'll start by saying that I love my school. We're big enough that someone can get lost in it, and small enough to always know someone wherever you go. It's a nice mix. Classes are decently sized, and most of the teachers really care about what happens to you. In fact, all but maybe two of my professors knew my name in the first month. Peoria... some may say it gets boring, but with the right group of friends, one just has to know where to look. The administration is more helpful than I'm used to, and they really want to know your feedback, although there's an occasion that they run the school more like a business to make money rather than an institution. Really, the best I can say is the people I've met here, both staff and friends.
I absolutely love Bradley. It's so quaint. It has its own small bubble, and I feel completely safe while on campus. But unlike some other small schools I've seen, its not in the middle of nowhere, all you have to do is walk two blocks and you're in a city. Wouldn't change anything; just the right size; most people ask where it is; outside the dorms or on the quad; Peoria is definitely not based around Bradley; the administration is good; um, the upping of drinking tickets?; yes, a lot of school pride, everyone wears Bradley clothing; not really anything unusual; can't remember anything too special, just a lot of little things; costs of drinking tickets.