Almost all of my professors were absolutely wonderful. Since it's a small school, they are super available in their office hours, and since class sizes range from 6-30, it's not that hard to get in to see a professor for support. Professors are excellent at connecting students with opportunities for research grants or even to present at conferences. They are a good source of moral support and really invest in students! They also pushed me to think critically and adopt new frameworks to understand the world, whether that was looking at racial capitalism and neoliberalism, learning from the fat liberation movement, or adopting a disability studies lens. The student body's commitment to social justice and radical change is incredible and inspiring, but the administration thinks that hosting panels and speakers and holding meetings around the flagpole to respond to tragic or racist events is enough. It's not enough. Luckily student organizers constantly push Davidson to go further with initiatives to rename Chambers, the main academic building named for someone heavily involved in the slave trade, or to start an Asian American Studies Department and a Jewish Studies Department, and to make reparations. Students have launched mutual aid efforts, social entrepreneurship projects, and change-oriented artist collectives. Inequality in terms of resources is clear. The historically Black sororities and fraternities do not have houses on Patterson Court, whereas the predominately white frats and eating houses do. The budget of the Africana Studies department is tiny in comparison to that of Political Science, History or English. Due to student activism, there has been some positive change, for example, the opening of Lula Bell's food pantry and student resource center. The party scene is ok, and there are lots of social events for non-drinkers as well. There are so many student activities, especially for a small school, and students are very involved. The school hosts lots of artists, performers and speakers, and the entertainment scene is surprisingly good for a school of 2,000. Davidson is about forty minutes from the city of Charlotte, however, the only public transportation between the two available currently is buses, so students mostly go downtown if they have cars or if their friends do. Davidson isn't a commuter campus and so there is a lot of activity on the weekends. Davidson encourages its students to volunteer, and many get involved in tutoring, at the community garden, or at the free medical clinic. Counseling is free and available to all students, but there are relatively few counselors in light of the demand, and so sometimes one has to wait two or three weeks to get an appointment. Pre-COIVD, they were combatting this by having walk-in office hours. Most of the counselors are white. Mental health is a serious issue for Davidson students, probably because there is so much academic stress and pressure. Professors push students hard, and Davidson tends to attract the kind of students who care a lot about grades. I know at least three students who, during my time there, faced suicidal ideation. The career services center is great. They offer a lot of summer internship grants, job shadowing and mentoring opportunities, and lots of help applying for positions, whether that is through resume review, mock interviews or coffee chats. I strongly encourage students to take advantage of it early on. Don't wait until you're a senior to start planning for your career! The Chaplain's office is wonderful. Rob Spach is a gift to humanity and infuses the campus with so much love and light. So many of the staff who are in non-academic roles are incredible people and during my time there, I built relationships with everyone from cafeteria workers to librarians to office administrators. The humans who work and study at Davidson are the school's most valuable asset, and they are what makes attending worthwhile.
Great school/values focused/dedicated skilled faculty. You will graduate from Davidson as a better person than you entered.
Imagine your friends bought you a Black Forest cake from the most famous bakery in town. You're not a huge fan of the cherry syrup that lines the layers of cake, but you love this gesture from your friends. You take a bite and, although the cherry syrup lingers around, the chocolate cake and whipped cream tingle your senses. One too many bites and that syrup might start to taste bitter, so you're careful to take just enough bites to keep that rich chocolate sensation. Davidson is a gift to its students that was made possible by many important donors. It has its characteristic flaws that primarily concern lack of diversity and the liberal bubble, but Davidson's faculty, community, academics, opportunities, and network make this college experience just as sweet as that cake.
Davidson is a phenomenal college, but it definitely caters to certain types of students. Academically the school is very difficult and will work you very hard, but this is all manageable if you genuinely love to learn. The professors are some of the most distinguished scholars in the world and then genuinely care about the students and their success. Unlike at larger institutions where professors prioritize graduate students and their research, Davidson professors will try their best to help you succeed in any way possible. Additionally, the professors are very well connected in their fields and are willing to share their contacts around the world with you to build your own relationships/network. The honor code is strongly emphasized on nearly every aspect of campus life. No matter if you forget something valuable or just want to leave your laptop in the library when you go for dinner, you never need to worry about your belongings being stolen. Even if you drop something around campus, oftentimes someone will have found it and posted a message to the FB group before you realize it's gone. The students are Davidson are incomparable to most other schools. Students on campus are some of the most driven and ambitious individuals I have met. Most students are highly involved in clubs and activities and are very passionate about different aspects of giving back (helping the homeless, aiding the poor, and providing assistance to refugees... etc.). Finally, students have very good success in getting careers in the fields they desire. Alumni are very willing to help students out in any capacity they can. While students predominantly go into corporate finance, medicine, or law, there are plenty of opportunities beyond these.
I love Davidson with all of my being. There's a statistic that some 60% of students end up marrying fellow Davidsonians- this makes sense, as we all talk about the school so much that no one else would want to marry us! The academics are top notch and the academic opportunities provided in and out of the classroom are not to be beat. The professors are ready to offer classwork and career advice, and most are also truly invested in the private lives and emotional well-being of their students. Everyone is involved in a handful of things on campus- we're all busy, but we also all knew what we were getting into. Campus organizations are really inclusive and woke on issues of social justice. If you have drive and a passion for learning, Davidson is a great fit for you!
I give Davidson an A- overall. Good academics and good people. I've met a lot of really friendly people at Davidson and made some great friends. Students do not care about sports very much even though like a third of the student body is an athlete. Students mainly go to support their friends.
Davidson is very challenging, but equally rewarding. Professors are wonderful and truly invested in helping their students succeed. The undergrad research opportunities that are available are unique to Davidson and prepare students for life after college (grad school/med school/workforce). I love the atmosphere and feeling of the campus and student body, but the academics are a bit cutthroat.
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