Carnegie Mellon is a college with great programs in many diverse fields. We have experts in fields ranging from computer science, to fine arts, to engineering, to philosophy and decision science. And students whose interests vary by just as much. This leads to intensely passionate students who love to share their knowledge and interests with other students. No other college that I looked at had so many options for students whose interests varied so much.
The Naked Truth
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If you are a social person who was not the most popular person in high school or not the best looking, you can make your place at CMU.
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.
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.
Very diverse group of people which is usually a good thing. A big downfall is that the diversity is frequently overpowered by everyone's awkwardness and that creates a gap. Also the different schools have little to no interaction with each other.
The school I attend is very self paced. The teachers are very charismatic and seem to care about what they are teaching. It is a very professional enviroment and fit for a person who is serious about their education.
There is an incredible work ethic here, across all feilds. Students in the arts are just as driven as students in the sciences.
This school is for those who are really looking for a challenge. Those who like to be involved in tons of different groups and can still handle the every day workload. One must be good at playing the balancing act if they would like to suceed in all aspects at this university. Being well-rounded is not extremely difficult, but one must be willing to put in the time and effort. In the end, it will all be worth it.
good computer science school
I initially applied to fine arts only institutions. Carnegie Mellon had more academic variety, which attracted me.
It's really a nice cross between some of the big and the little schools. It has the resources of some of the big schools like MIT, but there is a connection with the faculty and the school overall that is remenicent of some of a small school.
the academic rigor required
It's good across the board. I had the option of transfering to engineering or arts and still get a good education.
I haven't considered other schools.
Student groups tabling on the sidewalk surrounding the Cut.
Beware the linux clusters, the students are generally pretty smelly. A select few students attempt living there... thus the lack of showering is overpowering.
If you get a chance to go to a drama party...you should go because they are usually out of control fun.
DO NOT walk around alone at night, you WILL be mugged.
New House/Stever House is the best dorm!
People always ask, "Are there, like, parties at CMU?" Yes, there are. You can find parties with alcohol, parties without, open parties, close house parties, and always a ton of students at the bars. We work hard and play hard. By the time you leave, you'll probably know atleast one bartender at one of the local CMU hangouts who will know your standard drink order and toppings for your pizza. If you want to drink, you can drink. If you don't want to, then nobody will pressure you. It's all about knowing who you are, and making sure that you get your work done before you play. Play too hard with the workload that you're bound to have, and you'll be heading on the Dean's vacation. Learn to juggle your commitments, and you'll be able to create a great college experience.
There are professors that I'll never forget, being invited into their homes for dinner. I've complained to my advisor and had her pump me back up about what I'm doing here. I've made some mistakes, struggled through some classes and sailed through others. I'm in the home stretch now, but there are so many things that have made my CMU experience the college experience that I wouldn't trade for anything.
Tuesday Night Wings, watching football games (Go Steelers!), learning to use a circ saw for Booth, running hill sprints at midnight with my Buggy team, Friday happy hours at PHI bar (you might see a few profs there), modeling in the student designer fashion show, sorority retreats, driving to Ohio for our club lacrosse games and playing intramural volleyball games have all been huge parts of my experience. At the risk of sounding sappy, I've had some rough times with the good ones at this school, and I wouldn't trade it for anything. I can't wait to move in the freshmen this August for Orientation and spend the last week of my summer getting them ready for what could be the best 4 years of their lives if they're not afraid to leave their comfort zone, embrace their inner-nerd (even Bill Cosby said that we're nerds, and we cheered like crazy), pull a few all-nighters, and rally behind a Scottie Dog mascot.
Play ultimate, their team is fun as hell!
CMU needs to look into better food.
No matter what people tell you, it is possible to have a happy, fulfilling long distance relationship. I have twice daily phone calls with my boyfriend, once in the morning for about 15 minutes or 1/2 an hour, and then for between 45 minutes and 2 hours at night. We see each other every two weeks in Washington DC. We send each other flowers, I send him cookies and he lends my Sci-Fi books. The most important thing is to communicate--for example, when I had guy friends hitting on me, I told my boyfriend during our next call. Also, spontaneous calls when good or bad things happen, and listening (not multitasking!) during calls can all help. However, I found one of my most formative months at CMU was the one where I didn't see my boyfriend--because I couldn't be near him physically I had to closen the relationships I had made with my friends at CMU and rely on myself more emotionally.
CMU takes a more focus on academics. The schools position is if you have time that isn't occupied by classwork then you are not getting your moneys worth and they will make every effort to ensure that you are able to spend that time learning.
Try not to be intimidated, if you get into CMU and especially if you can afford it or if they give you a scholarship, it will probably be a very good place for you. I don't know a lot of people who are dissatisfied because Pittsburgh does offer a lot of opportunities for you to experience your field outside of the classroom, take on research and prepare for a job. I think I am more prepared than I know for like after graduation and the social aspect of the college, well you will find an area in which you fit in.
The only thing that I can think to put in here, applies to any school. Don't be afraid to be yourself in college. You'll find people who will love you to death for who you are, and chances are you'll just click, without even realizing it.
CMU is definitely not your typical college. Students work much harder than the average college student but their work definitely pays off. First semester of freshman year is very difficult, between adjusting to the academic rigor, making new friends, and figuring everything out. But if you stick with it, you will soon appreciate the challenges and all that CMU has to offer.
beware the linux clusters, the students are smelly and have little social bearings.
if you get a chance to go to a drama party...you must go. the girls are actually attractive and drunk and sloppy...
DO NOT walk around alone at night, you WILL be mugged.
college is exactly what you make it; no matter where you go, you dictate your own experience.
CMU is a great school for really buckling down on academics and a great social environment.
CMU in a few words:
CMU is a real community. People strongly identify with their separate colleges and majors, which separates us from many other campuses.
CMU is really about finding what you want to spend the rest of your life doing. If you want a real college experience.. DON'T COME HERE. This is the real deal. This is about really getting good at what you are going to persue. There's no sliding by, no falling under the radar. If you don't succeed, you won't want to stay. This isn't somewhere to come and party your four years away. We work hard, THEN we party hard. You'll meet some great people and some awful ones too. You'll find that most people here are out for themselves, and being able to go home for the summer is a blessing not a bother.
Pittsburgh is neighborhood-oriented, so there are lots of places to go in the city to go shopping or hang out. CMU is in an area with restaurants that have half price menus after 11PM, which is awesome. A downside to the area is that besides these restaurants most of Pittsburgh is closed after 9PM.
CMU has some of the worst food I have ever tasted, but it's been getting progressively better. The dining system gives you flexibility, which means you get more choice as to what you can eat.
This is coming from the perspective of a Electrical/Computer Engineering student who transfered into CMU his junior year. I have been living off-campus ever since being admitted to CMU and therefore have never experience the CMU dorms and apartments. Academically, CMU is a great place, however I have learned to mainly have my social life in the city of Pittsburgh.
It's like you are paying a bunch of money to go to a place you've been to before. And also the place sucks.
CMU is alright if you know the right people, its just hard to do that. You pretty much have to ignore more than half of the student population to have fun and have to try pretty hard to have a good social life. Getting a girl here is the worst because if they're moderately good looking, there are 5 other dudes hitting on her. In general the school is just awkward.
The Greek system is really interesting here. Houses have distinct personalities, and rush is difficult here.
Carnegie Mellon is a fun amazing place to go to school, as long as you take the opportunity to make it that way!
It can be a tough school, but just as a summation, I think it's a pretty neat place to spend college, even if it means less drinking and girls and more late nights studying. You'll meet some really incredible people, and if you stay in contact with them maybe they'll look after you when they're rich.
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