I associate with many politically active groups of students, so I encounter a lot of people with very strong interests and opinions. I am aware, however, that there are many apathetic students here. This is sometimes associated with our rather high population of students with high socioecomic backgroups. While Hamiton does make good efforts to create economic diversity with opportunity programs, having a lot of upper-middle class students from New England may be inevitable with Hamilton's location, cost, and liberal arts.
Overweight students would feel out of place. There aren't really any overweight kids here. Hamilton Student= Rich, White, from they city, Boston or New Canaan, loves drinking, lots of fun, and somewhat politically aware. Most students dress nicely for class, but nothing extravagant. If there are four tables of students at the dinning hall they would be.. 1) Football players/male athletes with 6 cups of gatorade, 2) TDX guys and ATX girls, 3) pretty people eating together and 4) and all the random people chilling.
We are more diverse than a person might realize at first glance. Some students have had trouble feeling out of place in their sexual orientations, but there are many people on campus with whom they would find a place. You will mix with a variety of students with very different views on this campus. The main thing about Hamilton is that most people are willing to listen to a point of view they do not necessarily agree with and accept a person as a friend although their beliefs may conflict.
There are definitely 'cliques'. I managed to find a solid group of friends from the beginning, but we've since found our own ways and don't spend quite as much time together (a result of being seniors!) There is some diversity, some international influence, but it is a rather homogeneous campus. Students try to be active, there are plenty of organizations. I really liked the lack of a strong greek system- that was not what I wanted and this campus doesn't need it either.
Most students seem to wear Hamilton sweatshirts, sweatpants, t-shirts, hats, flip flops, etc. to class. Basically anything you could find at the campus store. Very laid back in terms of fashion. Except, of course, for about 1/3 of the Student Body who attended prep schools. They are still very much into pastels for men, popped collars, Lili Pulitzer prints... in other words : preppy. I guess you could say that financially on the whole, Hamilton students are very well-off.
The Hamilton student body is very strange because it is diverse without being diverse. What I mean is that despite the schools efforts to achieve diversity in a racial and socio-economic sense, the school is for the most part comprised of upper middle class white students. However, there is a ton of diversity in terms of personality, style, and types of people. I can honestly say that any type of person would be able to fit in here because of this huge spectrum.
Although we don't have the most diverse campus, there are a lot of different groups represented here. There are a lot of athletes, but there are also a ton of other interests represented (music, art, etc.) Most people are really into academics and are politically aware, so it makes for great discussions in and out of class. Although we're known for being a very liberal campus, there are also a fair share of republican/conservative students.
Hamilton strongly encourages diversity among its students. We have many groups on campus such as the Rainbow Alliance, HEOP and BSU that celebrate different backgrounds and beliefs. However, most of our student body seems to be from the north east, especially places like Fairfield and Greenwich, CT so it can seem like a New England Prep School. However, there are people from different places you just have to get to know them.
For a small, liberal arts college we do fairly well with diversity. From race, economic status, geographic location, and even just experiences, increasing diversity is something constantly on the forefront of the college's mind. One of my favorite things about this place is the community. People are always friendly and not very exclusive. Everyone smiles around here and takes care of each other. You always feel very safe.
Hamilton is a pretty liberal atmosphere politically, though for a "liberal arts" college it's really quite conservative and traditional. Hamilton is also still a primarily white school, though they're trying to change that and (I think) doing a pretty good job of it so far. Intolerance is generally frowned upon, both by the administration and by the students--people make fun of racists more than they make racist jokes.