Everyone is pretty open and accepting, but segregated at the same time. I think anyone could feel at home at Hamilton. I would not want to come here for any reason if I was African American though. Most students dress fairly casual for class. Not sweatpants and a tshirt causual, but some do. I usually wear khakis, a tshirt, a sweater and a jacket to class. Different types of students do interact, but only from time to time. The four tables would probably be the fraternity and sorority kids, the football kids, the hockey kids, and then the normal Hamilton students. A huge number of students are from MA and CT. Most people seem to be quite well off. Some students are more active than others, but I feel like everyone has at least some idea of what is going on in the world. If I had to guess I would say that the typical students is center and leaning to the left. To be honest the only reason I'm considering staying at Hamilton is because of the possible job opportunities. Yes, I have heard students speak about how much money they hope to make after graduating.
The student body is primarily white, upper class, suburban. Hamilton is working towards diversity and each year has brought in more students of color. There are several programs that help bring in lower income students that would not be able to attend schools like Hamilton, including HEOP (High Education Opportunity Program) and POSSE. There are definite subgoups within Hamilton -- Admissions doesn't like to say it but the campus is definitely divided between the "Dark Side" and the "Light Side," the Light Side being more preppy and uppity and the Dark Side being more... everything else. Students are politcally aware.. all the people I know are pretty left of center, but it is still a fairly conservative school. Not as bad as some others though, but definitely not radical.
Most students were sweatpants, jeans, and t-shirts to class. It's a very casual campus, but there are a bunch of students who like to be dressy most of the time. Students are very active; if you aren't on a varsity sports team, you're probably on an IM team with your dorm floor, or a frequenter at the gym, or someone who likes to run through the Glen a few times a week. Most students are from the East coast, and it's typical for racial groups to clump together. However, I still don't feel like there is a student who could feel out of place at Hamilton. Anyone would be able to feel a connection to someone, because differing opinions are welcomed greatly, that's what makes the community so vibrant.
Although Hamilton claims to try to be diverse, it's like any other New England college- mainly rich and white. Most "diverse" students never socialize outside their own groups, mainly because they don't relate to the rest of the campus. It's sad but it's true. However, individuality is encouraged by everyone. There's a group for everyone, and all the groups intermingle. There is really a sense of community. People always say that about their colleges, but at Hamilton it is actually true. Everyone is here to learn. And since no one lives off campus, we can do so without the responsibilities of rent or real life. Hamilton is relatively sheltered, but students aren't naive.
The student body is pretty homogenous: white kids from the Northeast whose families before them were college educated(many at Hamilton). The vast majority are WASPs and a lot private school kids. The school insists only 40% of kids went to private school but it certainly feels like more than that. Coming from a fairly economically diverse public high school, it took a little while for me to adjust to the fact that more people were wealthy here than I was used to. I think Hamilton definitely has to try harder to get a more economically diverse student body by offering more financial aid if they continue to fail to become more racially diverse.
Hamilton has good diversity but need to promote interaction between groups. The financial backgrounds of students are well off for the most part but there are tons of people from diverse backgrounds. Students are not as politically aware as they should be and it would be cool if activism could increase. For the most part students are center, leaning left yet there is a great balance of liberal and conservative. If there were four tables in the dining hall one would be a sports team, one a sorority/frat, one a group of students doing work for a class together, and the other just a random group of friends.
For the most part, Hamilton students are very accepting of pretty much anyone. There are definitely divisions between different circles, but I find that within those divisions there are many overlaps. Our rugby team had girls in the most selective preppy sororities, chemistry and physics nerds, girls of all races, religions, socio-economic classes and sexual orientations. For us, it just meant that our fan base was huge because everyone had such different circles outside of our team! Students are definitely politically aware, and all opinions are respected even if students disagree.
We have a very diverse campus and we are very into activism. Everyone fits into at least one place in Hamilton. All different types of people interact. People of different orientations, religions, races, and ages. In the dining hall, often athletes sit together after practice, but besides that, everyone sits with everyone else. Many people tend to be from the Northeast, or New England. People come from all different types of financial backgrounds. Students are very politically aware and active. They tend to be predominantly liberal, but there are all types of students.
The students are pretty awesome. People are friendly at Hamilton, and most will find a good friend group.If you come here, you will recognize most people after a while. You won't feel out of place unless you are anti-social, and then I'd imagine your experience would be pretty isolating. Most students are from the northeast, from wealthier families, but there is more diversity in backgrounds thanks to programs like HEOP and POSSE. I've also heard that Hamilton is one of the most conservative NESCAC schools, but we're still pretty liberal.
I am part of Christian Fellowship, where we have large group meetings every Friday and sing, play music, and have a speaker. Also, every sundays are the church services held at the chapel, where I volunteer to play music during each service. I was also part of the BSU, Black Student Union (you don't have to be of african descent). Yes, different types of students interact, however, most of the time students hang out with those of their descent. Hamilton students come from almost everywhere.