Pittsburgh, PA
Carnegie Mellon University


114 Ratings

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Recent Reviews

Nicholas
What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

Engineering school, even after only the first year, has assaulted my mind with problems to solve. Every homework assignment, whether it be in Calculus, Electrical Engineering 100, or Computer Science, means that I will be staring at a problem, thinking of problem solving strategies and multiple methods to approach a single problem. Even the challenge of paying for college has changed the way my brain works. Faced with a 55,000 dollar tuition and inadequate support from my parents(though they are doing their best), I have been forced to become an entrepreneur, and I've learned to deal with stress on an entirely new level. I know that after graduating from a top engineering institution with a dual degree in Electrical Engineering and Biomedical Engineering, I will be very well equipped for a career in which I will be in a position to significantly improve the quality of life of some demographic of the population, a dream I've had since I was a child.

What do you consider the worst thing about your school? Why?

My school has a very small focus on social life. Though there are several thousand students that attend, it is a small group of perhaps only 200 or so who "party". Also, there is a very small group of attractive women there.

Aleksandra
What's the one thing you wish someone had told you about freshman year?

I wish I had known how tough the academics really were. You really need to sudy hard in order to do well.

What's the one thing you wish someone had told you about freshman year?

I wish I had known how tough the academics really were. You really need to sudy hard in order to do well.

What do you consider the worst thing about your school? Why?

The worst thing about my school would probably be the size. Because it is such a small school, everyone hears things about everyone else. This can lead to huge social problems.

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

The main thing that I have gotten out of my college experience is self discovery. With every seemingly meaningless task or event that I attend to, I end up learning so much. Not only do I learn about the event itself, but I also learn about my personal interests. College had been more of a social experience than an academic experience. Even though I am paying for a degree, I am getting so much more. Because most people at Carnegie Mellon live on campus, we have become enclosed in our own Carnegie Mellon bubble with its own social norms and mores. This has been the most valuable part of my expereince at college, because this can be directly related to the future and the workforce. In the future, everyone becomes enclosed in their own work bubble. Having the skills to learn and adapt quickly to an enclosed environment is important beyond belief.

Andy
What is your overall opinion of this school?

The best thing is the academics. The faculty is near or at the top of their field in so many areas: computer science, drama, ...

What is your overall opinion of this school?

The best thing is the academics. The faculty is near or at the top of their field in so many areas: computer science, drama, engineering, robotics, design, music, decision science, and cognitive psychology, to name a few. The character and achievements of the faculty draw similarly brilliant and committed students. There is also the possibility to develop very different skills to a very high level. Students frequently double major or major and minor across schools within the university or create self-defined majors which bridge disciplines. The diversity in backgrounds and in interests is a huge strength as students are constantly surrounded by different viewpoints. The administration is helpful and treats students like adults. They take safety very seriously and everyone in the campus community receives emails when an incident occurs. I will always remember walking out of Newell-Simon hall at sunset after the final exam of the hardest course of my undergraduate career to the sound of bagpipes in the distance.

Describe the students at your school.

The nerd stereotype is fairly accurate. Most people are genuinely excited about what they study, sometimes sacrificing a social life in the pursuit. If you want to party you definitely can, especially in the Greek system. There is a lot of diversity and people generally are very welcoming. The financial backgrounds are mostly middle and upper-middle class but there are low-income and high income students. People are from all over the spectrum. The commonality tends to be ambition.

Here's your chance: Say anything about your college!

I am eternally grateful for this school. It enabled me to pursue my passions in decision making and music with brilliant, accomplished professors. They are willing to negotiate on financial aid offers so bringing them a better package from another similar private school got them to add $10k per year to my grant money.

What are the academics like at your school?

In upper level classes, professors know your name. My favorite classes were Behavioral Decision Making and Acting for Non-Majors. My least favorite was freshman Calculus. The most unique class was Decision Analysis and Decision Support Systems where the exam answers are weighted by probability on a logarithmic scale, which means that saying the right answer was 0% likely can get you a score of negative infinity on the question and thus the exam. The professors in my department were literally pioneers in the field. The two university (most senior) professors in my department both invited my to their homes to talk and give me advice. Students definitely get great jobs, but I think most of them learn for it's own sake. We are nerds, after all.

What are the most popular student activities/groups?

I loved a cappella. The theater performances are among the best in the country at a university level. Lots of interesting speakers, many of whom are huge names. I saw Bill Gates and Obama speak. There always tends to be a party somewhere.

What is the stereotype of students at your school?

they are all brilliant, overworked nerds

Chris
What is your overall opinion of this school?

Not a super-well known school by the general public, but it's really great academically. Sports are D3. Campus pride is relat...

What is your overall opinion of this school?

Not a super-well known school by the general public, but it's really great academically. Sports are D3. Campus pride is relatively not that big, but even though I don't wear plaid everywhere, I love CMU and so do most students. When we're pulling all-nighters (fairly often), we hate it, but when we're staying on top of the workload, classes are great.

Describe the students at your school.

Diverse. Race was theres a lot more asians than most places. Still majority of people are white. Very few black students. Lots of international students compared to most school. Not many interested in politics, but those who are a generally democrat, though quite a few conservative groups on campus. Some kids go to parties 5 times a week, some kids do homework everyday and party once every other week. It's really diverse, which is a good thing I think. Lots of different backgrounds, personality types, interests.

Is the stereotype of students at your school accurate?

Ehh...like anywhere, there are some nerdy kids, some cool kids, etc. Maybe the number of nerdy kids is disproportionate to real life, but overall its a good mix.

What are the academics like at your school?

LOTS of work compared to high school, but definitely manageable if you stay on top of it. Just dont expect to party on weekdays too often or join 4 clubs. Classes are great. Lectures are amazing, teachers are brilliant, homework is interesting (but challenging), tons of resources to help you out like office hours and even tutoring. My best strategy is just make a friend in the class. Also, teachers really DO take the time to get to know you. I know all school's say this, but it's true here. Everytime I pass a teacher I had since freshman year we say hi and usually stop to talk for a little. It's really cool that they make such close relationships with all the students.

What are the most popular student activities/groups?

Lots of leaders on campus, so the clubs are really active and do a lot of cool events. There's an Indian club that puts together amazing parties with great food and amazing dances every year. They also do this one event where people spray paint all over each other. The A Capella groups put on lots of concerts. The frats host campus events like a huge BBQ every year that is actually really good, etc. All sorts of fun events: hot dog eating contests, water slides, white-water rafting...

Yoona
What do you brag about most when you tell your friends about your school?

When I tell my friends about my school, I boast not only about how good the school is, but also about the faculty and student...

What do you brag about most when you tell your friends about your school?

When I tell my friends about my school, I boast not only about how good the school is, but also about the faculty and students. I worried about the transition from high school to college, wondering if the professors were intimidating and also how friendly and accepting the students would be of the new freshman. To my surprise, the professors were not stern or hard to approach. Instead, they were friendly and willing to help me with any questions I had. In addition, the upperclassmen were also helpful, guiding me in the right direction if i ever got lost.

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

I have only been in college for a month now, but I feel that it has been much longer. So far, I have gained a new aspect to life and have created relationships with others that will last for a lifetime. Living by myself apart from my family, I knew that it wasn't going to be easy, but the college has been accepting and has become my second home. The people in my dorm, in my classes, or those I met at events are people I will cherish forever. The lectures that I attend convey the wisdom of the professors and I only wish that I will be able to contain the vast knowledge that they convey. College has been an opportunity for me to become independent and I feel privileged to be able to attend Carnegie Mellon University.

What's the one thing you wish someone had told you about freshman year?

There is not much that I wish I had known before I cam to this school. Having visited this school before, when I came back to start my school year, I was comfortable and knowledgable of the school. During Orientation week, OCs and RAs assist the freshman of their respective dorms to allow the transition to be easier and smoother. However, I cannot say that I knew every single detail of the school before I arrived. I only wish I had known how much the workload was here at this school.

Devin
Here's your chance: Say anything about your college!

I chose Carnegie Mellon because it is not only a great school academically, but there are many opportunities in the city of P...

Here's your chance: Say anything about your college!

I chose Carnegie Mellon because it is not only a great school academically, but there are many opportunities in the city of Pittsburgh. Carnegie Mellon has so many great opportunities and is very diverse. I have been able to get involved on campus through Greek Life as well as extracurricular activities like being a part of the newspaper staff, treasurer of the women's leadership program, as well as off campus involvement at UPMC hospital in Shadyside.

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

Overall, I have gotten so much out of my experience in college. I am so happy with my choice at Carnegie Mellon. It has pushed me to be as successful as I possibly can be and has allowed me to stay involved in extracurricular activites in school and outside of school. I would not choose to go to school anywhere else because Carnegie Mellon has allowed me to become an independent person and grow as an individual. Although the academics can be difficult at times, it is a great experience to be challenged. With Carnegie Mellon located in the city of Pittsburgh, I have been able to have numerous opportunites for internships and volunteer jobs to help out the environment and the community. I can only hope that through this experience, I will be able to succeed in the next three years and be prepared for life afterwards.

What's the most frustrating thing about your school?

The workload at Carnegie Mellon can be frustrating at times, but if you can stay up on your work, you will be able to succeed.

Sonal
Describe how your school looks to someone who's never seen it.

Intelligent school with plenty of diversity and a focus on hands on learning. Great school for creators, and it really gives ...

Describe how your school looks to someone who's never seen it.

Intelligent school with plenty of diversity and a focus on hands on learning. Great school for creators, and it really gives you a lot of experience so you feel confident about your abilities.

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

Carnegie Mellon is a wonderful school for majoring in a communication design program, but more importantly it is a great school for creators. Creators of art, music, robots, computers, and just about anything. With its rich diversity and its hands-on approach to learning, Carnegie Mellon provides the right atmosphere to cultivate people who are insanely serious about their disiplines. The passion and admiration you develop not only extends to your field of study, but also to your peers'. The interactions between scientists, aritsts, historians, etc. are what give Carnegie Mellon its character. Heated discussions with your peers and professors over lunch are a common occurence, and so are midnight soccer and tennis matches in the dorm hallways the night before a huge project is due. Carnegie Mellon University has already established itself as a school known for producing young geniuses, but maybe the key to the success of Carnegie graduates comes from the fact that they learn how to have fun at school. I cannot imagine going to school anywhere else. Despite the back breaking hard work and time that goes into each project and paper, its sharing the experience with others that makes it all worth while.

What's the one thing you wish someone had told you about freshman year?

More about the AP/IB credits offered for taking certain tests.

James
Describe your favorite campus traditions.

Carnegie Mellon is a unique institution in that it is both well know for the technical fields such as engineering and compute...

Describe your favorite campus traditions.

Carnegie Mellon is a unique institution in that it is both well know for the technical fields such as engineering and computer science as well as the humanities such as acting and music. This is due to both the hard working student body and the dedicated staff.

What kind of person should attend this school?

For many students the first few weeks and months are a shock; the work required to stay afloat can be overwhelming. Therefore, only students who are willing to adapt and work hard should attend Carnegie Mellon. That being said, students who enjoy learning and gaining new knowledge are well fit for this University, and will have little trouble fitting in with their peers who share this same desire.

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

College has taught me many lessons. Whether it is separating white socks from red tee shirts while doing laundry, not waiting until the last night to begin studying for a big exam, or appeasing my roommate because I sleep three feet away from him every night, college is chalk full of life lessons. Many believe that the main lesson of college is to find something you enjoy and pursue it as a career. This is an important aspect of college, but it overlooks an important idea. In order to find a passion, you must first know who you are. Through the introspection during the long nights of studying, the bickering between roommates, and the little frustrations like finding your favorite socks are now pink, I found out who I am as a person. This has been the most valuable aspect of my college career.

Maya
What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

In my first year of college I have learned how to manage my time and my priorities without the guidance of my parents. I al...

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

In my first year of college I have learned how to manage my time and my priorities without the guidance of my parents. I also learned how to interact with new people and make connections. Also, particularly at Carnegie Mellon University, there are many resources and I have learned to obtain the most help that I can to ensure that I do the best that I can considering what is available to me. These things have helped me grow up and understand what it takes to succeed out in the world. My freshman year has been valuable not only for the excellent quality of the classes and professors but for the broad range of ideas I was exposed to. Coming together with students all over the world has really changed my perspective of a lot of things and caused me to gain knowledge and experience in areas of life that are not in the classroom. Also I witnessed politics firsthand with the event of G20, which took place in Pittsburgh. In addition, I have formed the closest bonds with the people I met in the past year and my life has truly been changed.

What's the one thing you wish someone had told you about freshman year?

I wish I would have known how much different college classes are from high school classes in the sense that I was caught off guard by the workload in the beginning of the semester and I spent the rest of the semester trying to bring my grade up to my standards. I also wish I would have known that I could have handled juggling classes and extracurricular activities because I was so afraid that my grades would fall if I got involved in other things but I feel as though I would have done better if I kept busy.

What do you brag about most when you tell your friends about your school?

I brag about the fact that Carnegie Mellon is a great school with a great reputation and I am getting an excellent education. So many of the people who have graduated from this school have gone on to do great things and I know I will be one of those people. Also, this school is filled with people from all different backgrounds so I feel as though I am really experiencing the most out of college.

Radiya
What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

it has been three weeks since i started college. However, it's great feeling that i gained lots of experience in this three...

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

it has been three weeks since i started college. However, it's great feeling that i gained lots of experience in this three weeks. being in college help me grow more in my life. i go to Community College of Denver. CCD have enormous diversity around the compuss. i never felt like home. people in CCD are very helpful. ccd is helping me prepare for my four years degree. they have great solution for student who is willing to achieve their goal. they have many program that will help students to get great experience out of it. but i am looking forward to get involve in many other programs and gain more experience. i am taking Associate degree in science and planning to transfer to University of Colorado Denver. and major in medical and miner in doctor. thank you so much for taking time to read this essay. and i will look forward to hear from you..

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