The students are ok.
To preface: there are Hampsters from all over the globe. This is the beautiful bit about Hampshire College and the Five College Consortium: we're an international relations community where people commonly come to study politics, diplomacy, society, and the sciences. I live with my Malaysian hermano and a new girl from China; they've both been tutoring another modmate studying Mandarin (to little avail ;P). Our neighbors are from Taiwan, Nepal, Germany, and France. I'm from far Northern California; my mom is half Chicana. People are just people - we have our cultural differences, we acknowledge them, we work around them. I end up drinking sake rather than Mickeys - so it goes. We're chill with each other...except for that one time that I stepped into the sauna and a randomly naked Tibetan hombre was all disturbed, but I suppose that's just disjunctive cultural interpretation. It happens - like drinking with Germans, you regret it afterwards.
The dining hall isn't the primary eatery at Hampshire - people's common troughs are kitchens in Mods, our food is what we can create for each other. My Malaysian bro cooks too many amazing dishes to start listing them here. Of course, this leads to contention among the entitled population whose parents shower them with money and who expect to be provided for (without reciprocation) by their modmates. Dear children from NYC and alike metropolises: the world doesn't work this way and taking advantage of people with a "Fuck you, Buddy" mindset gets you nowhere...except perhaps Wall Street, but the U.S. is just pathetic that way. Isn't it?
This brings me back to the privilege question: it isn't a clean split, but I measure it 30/70. 30% of the kids are immensely wealthy and may be attending 'college' for the wrong reasons (i.e. mommy and daddy told me to, so I might as well attend the hippy/ster school). The majority of Hampshire students attend this college because we're sick of 'academic' nonsense and sophistical 'ideal types' of educational development. For the majority of Hampsters, our camp is a pedagogic statement denouncing the mythology of ivory towers. Concurrently, we attend classes at these ivory towers (through the consortium) where we're welcome to shit all over their structured fallacies. The Amherst students 'on the real' tend to love us, same with the professors; Smith administrators hate us and their students tend to be a bit on the slow-side socially. I don't mean this as an insult to feminisms - I truly believe that Smith students are brilliant, but emotionally underdeveloped. They tend to be very privileged people without much world experience, trapped in a bubble whereby any penis is a biopolitical enemy; Mount Holyoke students are historically the legit feminists and they're our closest/friendliest neighbors. UMass is too diverse to ever classify and an excellent resource - it's a zoo, and I hear that they're gonna start growing medical pot soon (a great opportunity for any aspiring nouveu-botanist.
Yes, Hampshire students lean heavy to the left, but the former president of the collegiate young republicans of Massachusetts was a Hampshire Student. This school's philosophy is open to libertarian interpretations. Personally, I've stopped calling myself a democrat and come to identify as a preference utilitarian - if Ron Paul tones down his rhetoric concerning public education and recants his stance on abortion, I just might vote for him. Yes though - in that 30% I mentioned earlier, many kids are politically clueless and de facto 'liberal' (again, because their parents 'said so'). It's super frustrating talking political philosophy with these imbeciles, because the argument inevitably turns ad hominem (e.g. 'you're only rehearsing the patriarchy of dead white men'). Then you turn the argument to Hannah Arendt, comparative to Kant, and they still can't keep up; isn't it shameful when one claims this elitist revolutionary political philosophy without any understanding of the past three hundred years? Anyway, yeah: the school sways left, though there are multiple dimensions to the left. There are no nationalist proto-blood-and-iron, god-and-family Hegelian American exceptionalists at Hampshire; if there were, they'd at once have too many readings to contend with to maintain these positions. I came to Hampshire touting Ayn Rand (who I 'needed' at the time), then I found Mill and recognized how confused a Russian she really was.
What do people wear? All sorts of everything - the more outlandish the better.
Who would feel out of place at this school? People who came to 'college' as 'to attend college.' People seeking an ideal type of pedagogic development (i.e. 'a major' in 'a dorm' with 'a cohort') tend to fair poorly. Also, religious people from the Midwest may find a culture of 'Easter Keg Hunts,' 'Extravaganjas,' and 'Trip or Treats' offensive. Sorry, it's the community that our combined cultures create.
Do students talk about how much they'll eventually earn per their degree? I had to laugh writing this. No. That's an Amherst culture, and they're sick of themselves with it. Life is vibrant and many of us may eventually make money. I'm currently writing my first book, entailing over a year of research - the only Amherst kid who has been able to say this over the past twenty years was Ted Conover. "I happen to believe ya make your own destiny. [...] You're gonna have to figure that out for yourself," -Momma, Forrest Gump. Hampshire prepares you to direct your own fate, and to never stop learning along the way - where adaptation is the catalyst to all life and prosperity, Hampsters carry around an ever evolving tool-kit, all our days. We're taught how to pack it at Hampshire...(I mean this in sooooo many ways xD).
Hampshire is very queer-friendly, even verging on heterophobic in some communities. There are people from all walks of life, but I must say that there are a lot of deceptively wealthy people. They dress like they're homeless, and then, one day, you discover they're a trust fund baby. It's the oddest phenomenon. There is not enough diversity, but "people of color" (as they are ALWAYS referred to at Hamp) are greatly valued in the community. I would say the most popular religious background is Jewish, although most Jews are non-practicing. The most heated debate on campus is Israel vs. Palestine. Many students are politically active, but I've found that issues that don't directly affect their lives tend to be overlooked. Certain causes become trendy to the point of being trivialized. While there are sincere activists, some students compete to be more oppressed-than-thou.
87% white. Very privileged overall. But there are lots of us who don't fit into those categories. The valley in general is pretty queer, and Hampshire's no exception. Lots of queer folks, lots of students who don't agree with gender binaries, and this is supported by our institution in certain ways (non gendered bathrooms etc.) but this isn't a place where battles over race and gender have come to some sort of utopian end. The hampshire bubble is a microcosm wherein the realities of power dynamics totally play out and thirve in everyday Hampshrie expereinces. But generally students are willing to fight for what they want be that local food in the dining commons, no coke products on campus, more faculty of color, or more eco-friendly buses.
Hampshire students run the gamut in so many ways. There was one kid who went around barefoot in shorts all winter even though there was snow on the ground. He was an exception, but plenty of people walk around without shoes. Piercings and dreads abound, but there are plenty of people who dress "normally." You can't tell looking at people which friend group they will be in. There is no obvious segregation along class, or pop culture affiliation lines. Most people have liberal political views, some more aggressively so than others. There are some militant vegans you have to watch out for, but most people are very live and let live.
Racially, there has been some controversy recently. There are not many African Americans on campus, not because the school doesn't actively try to recruit, but because it cannot compete with other schools in terms of handing out merit and need-based scholarships.
The queer community is totally accepted at Hampshire, to the extent that it's not really an issue. Which is not to say that there are not discussions about which pronoun people would prefer to be addressed with, but you'll never hear anyone on campus suggesting that there's anything wrong with any sexual choice consenting adults make.
Hampshire does have a Spriritual Life Center, which is fitting since the majority of the student body is into spirituality rather than organized religion. There is a very close-knit Jewish community here, but even some of the Jewish kids would describe themselves as culturally, rather than devoutly, Jewish.
No one talks about what they'll earn one day. People come to Hampshire to learn about what they are passionate about, not to add an attractive line to their resumes.
Most students at Hampshire come from the same socioeconomic background, upper class since the middle class is vanishing. There are definitely some students from working class families, but not many. This is not good because it fosters the same opinion from lots of people and not differing opinions from different backgrounds. There is not a lot of racial, ethnic or socioeconomic diversity at Hampshire. This is definitely lacking and makes me wish sometimes that I went to a public university where the conversations and social as well as academic experiences would be different.
Also the people of color on Hampshire do not feel comfortable as much as they should, they have expressed it publicly many times. The administration should try to make them feel more comfortable, welcome, take them seriously.
Pretty accepting of "weird" kids, "normal" kids tend to be outcasted by a lot of people.some seem to think if you dont smoke pot you arent a real hampshire student. But I dont smoke and most of my friends dont. i like everybody.
Hampshire can be cliquey, and students tend to keep to themselves. There are safe spaces on campus for students of color, and LGBTQ students. It is possible to put students into three groups, hippies, hipsters and geeks, and then there are hybrids of both. The homogenous aspect bothers some people. Most students are from the east coast, but there are plenty of international and west coast students, they just don't make up the majority.
alternative. kind. unique. politically ignorant
85% white, 20% Jewish, mostly wealthy or upper-middle class, lots of prep/boarding/Waldorf/magnet school kids who took things like AP philosophy and art history but don't know how to wash their own dishes. Lots of vegans/vegetarians. Hipsters, hippies and geeks are everywhere. We're way below the national averages for all students of color. There's pretty good queer visibility for white women + transmen. Pretty bad ignorance about issues of racism and classism among students who are white and class privileged (the majority.) Decent feminist and queer activism/awareness/allyship and strong concentrated group of white anti-racist allies. People will say that they're far-left but tell you you're hurting the cause for calling them out on their own prejudices. Activists have earned a reuptation for being elitist, even between varying groups, but that seems to be getting better....(?) There are multiple shit-storm controversies every year. One thing it's safe to say is that even people who claim to hate Hampshire really have a stake in the school and will duke it out over important issues.
it's an expensive hippie school. there's a lot of talk about privilege and white guilt. but fundamentally hampshire students mean well; there are very few i've encountered who were simply nasty or unpleasant people. like any college, the students are deeply wrapped up in themselves, but that doesn't mean all of them are narcissistic, but rather dedicated to their own causes - which may not be yours.
With only 1500 students, Hampshire can be very limited, diversity-wise. Students of color are under-represented, although Hampshire tries to recruit as many as it can. The LGBT community is, however, incredibly visible- I've heard that over 40% of Hampshire students self-identify as queer, and I'd bet that number is low. Hampshire is one of the most trans-friendly schools around- we have a completely gender-blind housing policy (only 10 percent of our rooms are doubles, but roommates can be of any gender whatsoever) and almost all of our bathrooms are gender-neutral. Hampshire also has one of the few openly gay Presidents in the country, which of course ensures that Hampshire will continue to be incredibly queer-friendly. As a matter of fact, straight students often complain of feeling somewhat marginalized on campus.
Race is an issue that can be very divisive on campus, as there are many very vocal anti-racism groups, and some students who aim to provoke intense discussion on these issues. Hampshire tends to have a few weeks of really intense race-related activity every few years, as new students constantly need to be educated on issues of white privilege and the racist underpinnings of society.
Most Hampshire students are the misfits and outcasts from their hometowns and home high schools, and that creates an interesting atmosphere- Hampshire kids tend to arrive priding themselves on their "unique" hobbies and interests, only to find that there's already a sizable contingent of students with the same interests. Ultimately, this creates a great freedom- Hampshire students can wear whatever they want without raising much of an eyebrow. There's a sizable hippie population, a sizable hipster population, and a lot of students in between. There's also a very visible geek/gamer scene, and plenty of Hampshire students who are comfortable moving between different groups. The first semester of Hampshire is a time of intense socialization- everyone wants to be everyone else's friend. By Div II, most people have settled into a small, very close group of friends, and those groups can come to resemble cliques, although most Hampshire students don't want that to happen. Hampshire students are usually very friendly to each other.
Geographically, Hampshire represents most of the US, although the majority of students come from New England or California- I have friends from all over, though, and, truthfully, geographic backgrounds don't mean much at Hampshire- the length of our flights "home" doesn't usually have a lot of bearing on our everyday lives.
Hampshire students are very much left of center. "Center," as a matter of fact, is somewhere near socialism on the Hampshire campus. A Republican, or even a relatively moderate-by-national-standards student would probably feel very out of place on Hampshire's campus. Social conservatives will be horrified- in addition to being super-queer-friendly, Hampshire is very sex-positive (we hand out condoms instead of candy on Hallowe'en, the biggest party of the year) and hosts a huge Reproductive Rights conference every year. Fiscal conservatives may be able to survive, but Hampshire's been called a commune, and most students are definite proponents of at least democratic socialism (the Frisbee team, the only major sports team, is called the Red Scare). Hampshire students like to try to ignore money- those that come from more money are able to do this quite well, and those that have to struggle to keep their financial aid obviously have more trouble. Hampshire is a young school with alumni who tend to go into non-profit or other socially conscious work (i.e. low-paying) and thus has next to no endowment- a fact students are very aware of, as it translates into buildings that aren't maintained as well as they should be, and a very high (and ever rising) tuition, with financial aid a frequent point of contention. Hampshire students are definitely not out to get rich themselves, though- one of our cliches is that every Div III/class/club/party must have the phrase "for Social Change" added to the end of it, and we know that there's no money in Social Change.
Again not diverse, but often a great group of people who are often very engaged and independently driven to a great range of interesting goals. After talking to people at Hampshire's it is hard to leave because you never will get as good of an answer when you ask a student what they do. Since the majors are all independent the students are very excited to talk about what they study why they study it and what they want to do with there life. This is actually why I attended Hampshire. At all the other schools people would say something along the lines of: "Ahhh i dunno, my major is physics but I don't like it that much". They all seemed to be at college because it was the next logical step after high school. At Hampshire people seem more to have found it as their ideal place to go. Many came after taking a year of to figure out what they wanted to do, and realized that Hampshire was the place most able to make that happen. It is also not uncommon for Hampshire students to take a break from their studies and do something else that interests them for a semester a year or more, and the things that they do are often fantastical, things that you only read about, until you attend Hampshire. If examples are needed: I knew a couple of people who took a year off to bicycle all over Europe. Someone else went and worked at a bike factory learning how to weld titanium frames together by hand. I personally have taken the past semester off to build a boat and sail it down the Ohio to the Mississippi.
Hampshire students can give the feeling of being entirely homogenous and of being intensely individualistic. They are generally very left leaning, although not as much as they like to claim. They are mostly from a white-upper-middle class background, something which is a very controversial issue on campus. The students have a reputation for being politically active, but often don't live up to it, although sometimes they'll suprise you. I would say that the Hampshire community has a very bizarre dynamic in that most, if not all, of the students were outcasts at their highschool. What this leads to is a place where you have to be "enough." I've had many discussions with friends who identify as an LGBT individual, however they feel outcasted from the LGBT community at Hampshire because they don't want their LGBT identity to be the defining characteristic of their life. This is not an isolated feeling, many individuals feel outcasted from a community that they indentify as because they don't want that identification to be their sole indentification.
There are students...that make up a body.
People here are incredibly liberal. Please, more moderates, come. Love of God, please come. Raging debates happen often, as well as stupid social movements (in my opinion, sorry). It is an incredibly self-conscious campus. We're so liberal, we protest ourselves. However, I've never had a problem making friends (in fact, the best way to make friends is to complain about how liberal everyone else is. Turns out, everyone thinks that).
Different people often interact. It's hard to stay completely unknown. My advice is be friendly and join some type of on-campus community. Oh yeah, many people smoke, so if you love smoking or if you hate smokers, come here. Both will earn you lots of friends. Same goes for vegans.
Everyone is very accepting. In fact, they are so accepting that if you don't accept everything there is, you won't be accepted. Political Correctness is a pain in the ass there.
There are cliques that go along with the issues. There are major class problems there, as some of the kids have more money than God and others are struggling to get by. There is a group of kids who are so obsessed about race and the horror of white privilege that sometimes I find them racist themselves. You are not going to be able to escape race fights on campus, they won't let you.
And if God help you, you are straight, white, and male, prepare to feel guilty for the worlds sins for the next four years.
In terms of the student body, Hampshire is certainly a mix of all different types of people- from race to religion, sexual orientation to socio-economic status, we range between all possible extremes. In terms of groups on campus, I have found that they are extremely passionate and active and we strive to make everyone more aware about both the struggles and accomplishments of all types of people. Hampshire's campus is incredibly open to all types of people and all types of activities, and if you enter it as a close-minded individual you can rest assured that you'll either experience a change or feel pretty uncomfortable. This is shown on a large scale by all the various events on campus, but can also be seen in day-to-day life- you don't see many fake tans, ugg boots, baseball caps, or starbucks coffee cups- people are always sporting unique clothing and hairstyles- from parachute pants to dredlocks.
In terms of financial backgrounds, most students are upper-middle class- tuition is an issue for many people here, and most people are on some sort of financial aid and/or have a work study job. Politically, the majority of the student body is active and are predominantly to the left of the political spectrum.
Hampshire is with out a doubt the most politically, religiously, racially and economically homogenous community I have ever been a part of. With very few exceptions, we are a far left, wannabe-buddhist, white upper middle class school. Many students are from small towns, and have never been exposed to any kind of diversity. These people make up the majority of the student activist groups, which are probably the most prominant of our social blemishes. They are inept, ill-advised and often work entirely outside the proper process (both administratively and socially) for organizing anything, with the result that most "demonstrations" are ragtag cliques of attention seekers banging on pots and pans and playing inscrutable music from their boomboxes. Their level of preparation and structure call seriously into question the legitimacy of their devotion to whatever cause-of-the-week is stirring up trouble. Hampshire students are also, by and large, isolationist. They want little to do with the other five colleges, believing at least UMass and Amherst to represent the invented monsters of their childhood: "jocks" and "preppies." While I'm sure some Hampshire students (like everyone else in the world) have experienced some unmerited bullying, it cannot justify the abhorrance they hold towards any alien subculture. Hampshire students are generally an intolerant, opinionated and often ignorant lot, but we have a few real gems, and could certainly use more. Bottom Line: If you're brilliant, love to think (or love to do any one thing, really), capable of navigating social and administrative byways, and open-minded, you will find a place to fit in here.
Campus is extremely liberal. I have more often heard negative comments directed towards meat-eaters or conservatives than towards homosexuals, or people of color. With that said, Hampshire being the liberal institution that it is attracts many students who want social change. The breakdown occurs when students don't know the best ways to communicate their ideas. Anti-Racism has been a hot topic on campus this past year. Many students came away from the discussions quite offended, not because they disagreed with the principles of what the students were fighting for, but more because they disliked the way the students were "fighting."
Socially, there tends to be something for just about everyone, especially when you look at the 5 colleges. The only students I have ever seen not fit into to Hampshire socially were 2 students who left my first year. They were both quite "preppy" and felt very out of place. the only other person i know who left for that reason was a spring transfer student. She told me that it was hard for her to find friends because everyone had already established their social groups, and no one was interested in expanding them to welcome her. Not being a transfer student myself, I can't vouch for this from personal experience, but social groups at hampshire are usually formed first year in the dorms and last all four years.
A very liberal campus. Pretty homogenous in terms of race, but no more so than other schools like it. There was a big movement about race last semester, which got a lot of the student body involved and led to limited (some would say disappointing) changes. Financial backgrounds are more varied than I expected from such an expensive school. Big LGBT presence. All bathrooms are co-ed, even in classroom buildings. A lot students from the Northeast, but also a wide variety from all over the US and some international presence too. Clothes are pretty much anything goes, but there isn't much of the preppy style-- thats more Amherst. Salvation army is really popular. Quite a few 'hipsters.'
Students as a whole are not as politically active as I expected-- there's a lot of apathy towards action, although just about everyone has an opinion. Politically active people can definitely get themselves heard, though, if they're motivated.
A wide variety of interests & a lot of intellectual conversation outside of class. People are quite friendly although there is some separation between first years and everyone else, mostly because first years are concentrated in the dorms. Social groups definitely emerge, but I don't see them as competitive or particularly exclusive.
Hampshire students are very accepting because they are all different in their own way. I find that people living in the dorms do not really interact with people living in the mods, which is unfortunate because first year students don't get to really form relationships with second-fourth year students. Students are very liberal and very outspoken and very active in their opinions and beliefs. They come from all different financial backgrounds, though most hate capitalism even though it pays for them to go to college. I find that Hampshire is admitting more people who I feel don't belong at Hampshire and are simply attracted by the fact that Hampshire has no grades. These are the people who are not intellectually curious, who do not care about thinking, and who are more interested in discussing how to seduce the hottie down the hall rather than Ionesco's use of existentialism in his absurdist plays. These are also the people who come to Hampshire for the drugs and who use drugs incorrectly. I find that generally Hampshire college students don't so much care about how much money they'll be making one day, but how much they will be able to change the world.
The Hampshire student body is incredibly radical and intolerant of dissent. If your opinions deviate from the norm, you will most likely feel personally attacked, or you'll just learn to keep your mouth shut. We apparently used to have a Republican club (which had a total of 2 memebers) which was eventually intimidated into disbanding (though I don't know all of the details of this story).
Overall, though, the student body is pretty laid-back, and they are generally more open to meeting new people and far nicer than the students at many other schools.
If you are looking for diversity, though, don't come here. The majority of the student body is white, and from either a farm, the suburbs, or New York City.
Some are awesome, some are not. We have everything from jocks to hippies to nerds and cool kids, but everywhere does. You will find someone you love to their toes, and you will find someone else you want to hip check off a cliff. Hampshire students are (again) full of extremes: a great many are very politically and environmentally conscious, but a great many are also apathetic to the core. The campus on the whole is very liberal.
People try not to openly display their wealth here, so it seems like Hampsters don't really have money, but in reality, in order to afford Hampshire, you either have to be on scholarship(s) or you have to have a lot of money.
Everyone at Hampshire interacts with everyone else: people are nice and friendly. However, at the same time, people of certain backgrounds do tend to band together. For instance, black students tend to stick together, as do international students. But in general, as I've said, people are friendly and welcoming.
There is a wide variety of LGBT students at Hampshire. It seems to me, as Hampshire is a private school there is a majority of students from a wealthy or well-off background. I have met a lot of Jewish students. Even though many Hampshire students have money, it is not a preppy school. People are not stuck up.
Many Hampshire students are from the East coast or California or Washington state.
Students at Hampshire dress any way they like. It is one of the great things about the school. No one looks at you funny if you wear a wacky outfit. Many people, including myself, go barefoot everywhere, including to class.
- hippies (typically have dreadlocks, don't wear shoes to class, smoke pot, study social change)
- hipsters (typically wear skinny jeans, have bangs, chain smoke cigarettes, party, study photography and film)
- miscellaneous (there is a little of everything at Hampshire!)
- very strong LBGT and students of color groups
- typically students are from california, brooklyn, and vermont
- typically students are liberal but are suprisinly NOT politically active
Hampshire College student body is loud. They complain a lot about the homogeny at Hampshire, and about how that necessarily denotes racism, orientation-ism, classism, etc. Most people on campus are Socialists, or at least Social-Democrats (self-proclaimed). Or they say that they don't believe in labels and act like Socialists or at least Social-Democrats.
The student body tries really hard to say something alternative, without always thinking through what they're saying.
A large proportion of the student body is also very awkward. Social skills are often lacking at Hampshire College. And yet, ironically, it's very hard to get people to leave you alone. People at Hampshire love to be social, even if they're not always good at it.
Since Hampshire is a fairly new college and has a small endowment, tuition is high. So there are a lot of well-to-do students. However, not everyone is rich. There seem to be a fair amount of students from the Northeast, but I have also met students from California, Georgia, Virginia, etc., as well as international students.
The majority of Hampshire students are white (I believe about 87%), although there are some students of color and international students. Although I haven't personally witnessed any racism, I've heard that instances of racism do occur on campus. There is a cultural center, as well as identity-based housing for students of color and international students.
A lot of Hampshire students dress uniquely. Sometimes I feel like I don't really know what's "in fashion" because I don't know if the trends I'm seeing are popular in the wider world or just among Hampshire students. It sometimes seems that by trying to be "different," Hampshire students sort of become the same. Instead of pressure to fit in by being "normal," there is pressure NOT to be "normal."
Many students are politically aware and active. Students are predominantly left. I believe there may be some republicans somewhere at Hampshire, but they are definitely in the minority. Conservative students might feel out of place at Hampshire.
Hampshire is, by nature, totally accepting, and when this attitude differs a problem arises. New students find themselves editing their vocabularies (do NOT say fag at Hampshire period) Students commonly wear whatever they stumble upon in the morning. Cliques do exist here, but the school is not big enough to allow total exclusion of different groups.
Students are typically middle-class and above, simply because Hampshire cannot afford anything but high tuition and conservative financial aid. Students are all politically aware, a majority are politically active. Republicans need not apply.
When talking about how much they'll earn one day, Hampshire kids bemoan their future life of poverty, but with a good sense of humor about it.
Hampshire is a very liberal campus full of hipsters and hippies. The student body is mostly white and middle class, but has very active POC and international student groups.
There is not alot of racial diversity, there is a large queer community. People can wear whatever.. I mean whatever they want. There are alot of hipsters but anything really goes hear. most people are very liberal and politically savvy. Many do not expect to make alot of money becase we are activist and art kids.
Wealthier, whiter, and smoke-weedier more than average America. There was one conservative on campus. He left. Surprising amount of students leave because of academic challenge; they don't put enough time into their work. Diversity in clothing, genders, and sexual orientations, but not much to offer racially. Generally smart kids, but lazy and complaining-types. Smart kids who are hard-workers or motivated career-wise may feel extremely out of place. Also, non-drinkers and substance-free people will certainly feel out of place. Some theft occurs.
The reason I came to Hampshire was because of the students. As stated before, the average Hampshire student is friendly, cool, and smart. I have received comments from people at other colleges that Hampshire students are much nicer and outgoing than students at most colleges. Hampshire students are definitely liberal/radical, which might be a turnoff for some people, but above all Hampshire students are very friendly and interesting.
Most students that go to Hampshire are very liberal, and a good number of students are politically and socially active and aware. There are oftentimes spur-of-the-moment demonstrations on campus, and there are usually student/faculty forums that you can go to. There are definitely cliques on campus; there are the hipsters, the hippies, the skateboarders, the international kids, the kids of color, the lgbtq kids, the theater kids, the art kids... And a whole bunch of others. Although all of these different groups exist, they all interact (for the most part) and the only way you can tell there's any sort of divide is by the way people dress. There's this saying on campus that Hampshire is made up entirely of kids who were the outcasts in there high school, which I think is pretty spot-on. It's strange, because everyone is so unique individually, but when you see us all together, we all look the same.
Hampshire has a lot of diversity... or tries to. Anyway there are special mods (houses) for people of color, homosexuals, vegetarians, cowboys...
No one really feels out of place. Unless they aren't weird enough. It's easy to feel that way at Hampshire. I'd say most of the students are pretty well off, since it's an expensive school. But they give a lot of financial aid, and scholarships (James Baldwin). I'd say it's a good mix
A lot of students are politically active, a lot aren't. But the environment is very encouraging of those that are. A primarily leftist school. PC also
I've never really been into forming my own groups on campus... drives, sales, recruiting... whatever people do. But it's a good environment for that too.
Some crazy Brits, and other foreigners... not enough I'd say.
Nobody will really be out of place. I have friends who regularly wear suits to class. Last week a friend showed up to dinner wearing only a blanket. You won't be judged.
Generally a very accepting community. The only concern would be if your views are socially more conservative.
Hampshire is not diverse. Racially, financially or socially. Hampshire is, for the most part, a rich white school full of potential activists. Students wear whatever to class. Some come in pajamas, some in jeans and t-shirt, others in skirts. I am no longer surprised to see men walking through the library in skirts and dresses, people with overkill tatoos and piercings and people who's gender is questionable in my mind. There are people who dress everyday like pirates, drag queens and soviet soldiers from world war I. If you think you are a standout dresser, come to Hampshire. People talk about people but it is not for what they wear but how they think.
Telling gender at Hampshire is a tricky thing. Everyone is liberal and pronouns can be confusing. I feel like Hampshire is a very safe place for gay, transvestite and transexual persons. I can only speak from what I have seen as a heterosexual female but it appears to me like everyone is very accepting and if someone has an issue with a gay person, the problem is never with their sexuality but with the way they conduct themselves.
There are a lot of rich white kids at this school. There are a lot of LGBT people at this school. But, there are still a lot of middle class students and a lot of straight ones too. But everyone seems to be either a liberal democrat or a socialist or an anarchist.
I don' think that anyone that would want to come to Hampshire would feel out of place. There a are a lot of different crowds and I feel that they interact. It is easy to get a core group of friends and not reach outside of them but everyone will be nice to everyone. there is no tension between groups. Except the "sub-free" kids and everyone else. That's just a choice of what you do with your time outside of class, where and with who you spend your free time.
If you are a religious student, get ready to meet people who feel that they are above "all that religious crap". Seriously. At times, as a religious student myself, its frustrating, having to deal with people who don't hesitate to say that believing in God is just so stupid, and only an idiot would do so. But don't let this sway you, most people will shut up if you tell them to do so. In terms of racial incidents, once again, you will meet people who call all Latino people "Mexicans" and think that all black people are bad people, or in the case of public safety at Hampshire, that you are from Holyoke Community College, coming to ruin the college. And again, get ready to meet people with lots and lots of $$. Now, people wear whatever at Hampshire, but generally, you get the hipster feel. oh, and this is def a left, very liberal school.
A lot of people would say that Hampshire's student body could be boiled down to three classifications: the hippies, the hipsters, and the geeks. The hippies are predominantly vegan, fight unendingly for various activist causes, fix the yellow bikes on campus and take OPRA (Outdoor Programs & Recreational Athletics) classes. The hipsters smoke, play in bands called things like "Rektal Mucus", do large scale incomprehensible yet impressive art projects, and dye their hair every color under the sun. The geeks watch science fiction movies every Saturday night, have a bi-annual role playing tournament, fight with foam weapons on the library lawn, and play video games in the ASH lab.
I realize, of course, that these are all stereotypes, and certainly not everyone Hampshire fits into one of these three categories (and students would probably be angry that I tried to fit them into categories at all). But I will say this: Hampshire is a college made up entirely of those strange kids you knew in high school. Wonder where they went? They all go to college together, right here.
Hampshire is a predominately Caucasian campus, but it is open to all people. There are a lot of students of color, but there are more white students. I know people of all religions (although there seem to be a lot of Jewish folks), ethnicities & races, genders (male, female, gender queer, undecided etc), races, economic backgrounds, sexualities (it seems like at least half the campus is bisexual or pansexual, but there is a large queer AND straight crowd) etc. I think the only kind of person that would feel out of place here was someone filled with hate. There are some conservative people who attend and even if they don't agree with any economic and social thoughts of anyone else, most people here just want to make friends.
You see people come into class wearing very, very little to, barefoot folks, dressy people, people all in black, people dressed casually in jeans and folks with mohawks. It really varies.
A lot of Hampshire students are from Massachusetts and New York. I think that's where I see most people coming from. But we also have a lot of international students and people from other states as well.
People are very politically aware. I watch the news regularly with me house mates and we like to keep on top of the political debates (especially for this up and coming presidential election). They like to being active in activism and make a difference both on campus and off campus.
Ugly, ugly people (honesty points?). To be fair, it's more that (for some absurd reason) Hampshire kids don't feel like they have to be presentable. Which is great, yay for what's on the inside. But it seems really disconnected from the real world. On the other hand, there are tons of attractive people at the other four colleges (cough, UMass). But in all seriousness, Hampshire kids are wicked smart.
i pretty much hate most of them. people glare at you if you try to dress up and look nice, i think it's because they're still angry at the popular people in high school who were mean to them and want to maintain their image of hampshire as its own private haven for those poor, hurt, misunderstood, "intellectual", trust-fund babies. people don't smile enough here. people aren't kind enough here. they're too busy with their fucking work, not to mention talking talking talking about shit that doesn't matter in the real world anyway. i know i sound bitter, but a lot of people here really do suck, and they're hard to put up with...finding cool people to hang out with is pretty hard when you're just sort of a "normal" person with no particular agenda...like i said i'm just here for the film program.
There are three different types of Hampshire students: hippies, hipsters, and geeks. Most people are a combination of those three types of people. The hippies are the activists, people who work on the farm, people who don't wear shoes, people with dreadlocks, people who eat lots of organic food. The hipsters are the "cool" people. They dress like they are poor, they are very confined to their social groups, and know more obscure things about whatever you like. The geeks like role-playing games, video games, comic books, and anything else that could be considered "geeky".
I think Hampshire students like to think that they're politically aware, and that we're a very socially just and active community, but I don't think we are as much as we'd like to believe. Many students are and there are many student groups on campus to address issues, but overall, I think most students don't take an active interest in the outside world, due to lack of time, mostly. It is a very leftist and liberal school.
The student body could maybe be described as 1/3 who care about thing like anti-racism and politics in a progressive or radical way, 1/3 who are frighteningly conservative, and 1/3 who don't care and are absent from the discussion. Students are friendly though.
Any student who cannot motivate him or herself will bomb at Hampshire. There are interwoven social clusters of every persuasion from LGBTQ to chefs to geeks to frisbie players. There are some cliques, but mostly people find groups of friends and these groups interact freely with other ones. Students are painfully aware of everything left, and painfully ign'ant of anything right. Nobody talks about future earnings, everybody talks about current and future projects.
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