Macalester College Top Questions

Is the stereotype of students at your school accurate?


Not really, there are just a few students in each of those groups that make it seem like a big deal.


All stereotypes have some truth in them, including these, but I have found a suprising diversity at Macalester in all the above subjects (except that it does get very cold in the winter)




While most of the students are ideologically very progressive and left leaning few really take action on those beliefs. Many people volunteer which is great but it usually does not lead to anything more than that.


All but the last. Definitely not multicultural-friendly


Aren't all stereotypes true to some extent? That being said - some are more true than others. The campus is not overflowing with queer students, though they do make up a valuable and vocal part of the community; everyone is not a high hippie - we have some articulate conservative students here, along with a significant range of more moderate students as well. We undoubtedly stray toward the liberal side, but I don't think it would be at all fair to brand everyone here as a "hippie," whatever you may mean by that. As far as elitist snobs go - I think we are to a degree. The school is a successful one, but I sometimes wonder if that has gone to its head - it's hard for ACTC students (those attending the associated sister colleges in the area) to sign up for our classes, while it remains relatively easy for us to get into their classes. Our campus orgs rarely interact with those of other campuses, which is a little silly considering how small we are - why not bring in fresh faces? I don't know if this is directly because of an elitist attitude, but I know it ends up looking that way to more than a few. Diversity is a huge issue in my opinion. The campus has a laid back attitude about it, accepting that there are differences and different people, but there is little effort put into understanding those by any but a small (but significant!) minority of usually colored students. The school's administration makes little effort to reconcile international students (a large part of our student body) with the smaller population of domestic students of color - each has much to gain from the other, but that potential has yet to be reached. If you're quirky, you will fit in, no matter what your quirk. I came to this school with three other students from my high school and the only thing we had in common was that we were all politically liberal; each of us has found a niche and are thriving. Be warned though - some of the quirk sometimes manifests as awkwardness. Mac is one of the very few places I know that gives you real and abundant opportunities to impact your surroundings. Just go to the Civic Engagement Center and you find so many opportunities for volunteer work in the cities. Mac alums tend to have gone to work for some socially beneficial cause - yes, even the econ majors. Econ and the hard sciences are often joked about, but that doesn't mean they aren't valued. The econ department alone has three different student organizations created around it, and the hard science kids find good resources at their disposal and a genuinely caring faculty that makes themselves readily available.


Most of the time.


Well, there are many of those types to make generalizations and stereotypes, but of COURSE they are not COMPLETELY accurate. There are some normal people, some attractive people, some conservatives, some environmentally-repulsed.


somewhat, but they are not noticeable when you are living among the weirdo's


Mac does have a great gay community, and its students are very politically active. While most of us do lean liberal, that is certainly not a rule here. There is much more religion and spirituality than people give us credit for. Students here are very engaged in the community.


This stereotype is mostly accurate, with some outliers who bring a more moderate or conservative view to the environment.


Those two stereotypes are self-fulfilling prophecies but they don't have to be. There are tons of amazing domestic students of diversity... and just plain amazing domestic students... and even internationals that are focused as much or more on the local scale but you do have to know where to find them and they can often sort of fall by the administrative way-side as groups. The ones getting attention for not conventionally "international" stuff tend to be individuals and tend to be individuals who really know how to advocate for themselves and their causes whereas the more "internationally" focused seem to have more of an infrastructure of support - social, monetary, institutional, academic... everything. As for having a cause to champion, plenty of people come into one after a year or two but by the time you are a late sophomore, definitely by the time you are a junior, you are probably branded as "that kid who promotes *fill in the blank*"


For the most part, yes. The school is very, very, very liberal. Currently, I would guess that 98{4a082faed443b016e84c6ea63012b481c58f64867aa2dc62fff66e22ad7dff6c} of students have succumbed to Obama-mania. This leaves those farther left and farther right feeling a bit ostracized, but being in a large city generally negates that.


There is definitely a population that fits the stereotype but I mostly found the student body to be made up of rich kids who declare their liberal loyalties but end up being quite closed minded and unwilling to acknowledge viewpoints other than their own as having any legitimacy.






Most are not really true. We do have boys on campus and do other things besides study. There are some differences of opinion on campus and we do have a republican club. Bagpipes though, are a past time but most people don't play them (except at special events!!!!)


While it is true that an education at Macalester is primarily made available to wealthy kids and the college emphasizes travel and multiculturalism in the admissions process, they do actually offer quite a bit of financial aid to students who need it and make a legitimate effort to make domestic students feel just as welcome as international ones. As for the diversity stereotype, while the international student population is definitely noticeable and a huge part of life at Macalester, there is still a huge popualation of white, middle class kids. Additionally, like I said earlier, a high socioeconomic status seems to be a common denominator amongst Mac students. The drug and alcohol scene at Macalester is a lot more tame than students, and sometimes the college itself, attempt to make it out to be. While a lot of students do abuse drugs and alcohol, I'd say that the level of substance abuse is just as much of a problem at most other colleges.


Nope, we have just as many pot smokers as the next college. We also have conservative people on campus. They are admittedly few, but they are present. Instead considering the student body super-liberal, I consider it super active. People are always involved in some kind of action or process which means something to them.


some people smoke pot (less than 30{4a082faed443b016e84c6ea63012b481c58f64867aa2dc62fff66e22ad7dff6c}), some are gay (yay!), but not all, many vote democrat, and a few are ugly--but not more than is usual.


The idea that Macalester is an activist paradise is not entirely true. While many students are active outside of the school, there is much less enthusiasm for classic student activism. Most activists are centered on environmental or social causes, rather than being active in areas such as the anarchist movement, or any more radical causes.


Somewhat. Students are very liberal and like to bond with nature in weird ways. They are ethically more conscious than most. Some like to raid the trash at Whole Foods and Breadsmith to find their meals.


I think to some extent they are very true, but not in the negative spin that they are generally presented in. I think that students are more openminded to conservative viewpoints than people give us credit for


While there are always exceptions, YES, Macalester is a left-leaning hippie school full of socially-awkward students who value difference and inclusion. The students are very accepting, but the sorority/frat type might feel out of place at this school!






To a point. I don´t smoke and I´m not super liberal, and I´ve never felt out of place at Mac. There´s definitely a wide range of people, and definitely not everyone is weird. However, if weird, smoking hippies are your thing, then Mac has a spot for that too.


Arguably. The students at Macalester are very socially, politically, and enviornmentally aware, and largely liberal. But, in my expereince, there are few actual hippies.


For the most part, they are pretty accurate.


pretty much


Somewhat. Mac is a very progressive place, but most students are very issue based and don't necessarily subscribe to one political viewpoint. Because people have different opinions on different issues there is a good deal of political diversity on campus. The main things we all have in common is that we are all passionate about something (music, politics, the environment, civic service, ect) and really like to discuss our opinions.


Sometimes. People at mac tend to be socially liberal but their political views fall throughout the spectrum. Some students are radical activists, but not all. Everyone who has been accepted to attend Macalester is very intelligent. Many are a bit shy and introverted, which makes for some awkward moments, but once people become comfortable and open up, you'll make friends that will last a lifetime.


The school does have a large international student body but there is often a division between the domestic and international students. Some may be regarded as hippies, but most get over themselves after their first two years and figure out how to be themselves.


There are a huge variety of people at Macalester, so for every stereotype of a Macalester student there is surely at least one on campus. However, overall what I like about Macalester students is that each has his or her own passion- whether that be environmental justice, DDR, or painting- and loves to explore and pursue that passion.


Not entirely. The school is no doubt extremely liberal but we for sure have a mix of hetero and homo sexual students. And there are hippies and yuppies alike roming the campus.


sometimes, there are a select few who practice what they preach but are often overly aggressive and sanctimonious about it




As with many extremes, they generally eliminate the more accurate, moderate view. I've witnessed drug use but no where near what I had been told to expect and definitely no worse than my high school. I've also met a lot of hard-studyers and book-worms. Most of these people both work hard and play hard though. Mac kids are good at finding a balance between what is necessary for thorough and scholarly school-work, and what is necessary to keep one sane through all the studying. Oh, yeah, the quirky thing is totally true, by the way.


somewhat, but not always to the extreme. People here tend to be artsy, eco-friendly, eccentric, there is a large homosexual population, but I don't know if it's that much more than other places or not. So, I feel like the majority of people are good students, but also know how to relax and have fun even when there is a lot going on.


There are more vegetarians here than in the outside world, which I think is great. I see people eating meat once in a while, and it doesn't seem too hard on them. We are also more politically correct than average, which I think comes with learning about the world, and it's not blind. Some people are strange and awkward, but not more than anywhere else. There is a lot of upper class representation. Probably less than other liberal arts colleges though, and there are a lot of undercover financial aid kids like myself.


I'd say that we're mostly liberal, and we do study. But, it's hard to stereotype Mac kids because they are so diverse in backgrouds and interests.


This stereotype is mostly accurate, but we show a lot more diversity. While our conservative/Republican population is quite small, there are still a diverse set a political and social views on campus.


We are an incredibly liberal campus with very few individuals from the conservative side of the spectrum. Sometimes our campus is so liberal, we might tend to focus on issues that aren't necessarily pertinent to the rest of the world--or there are bigger fish to fry (i.e., protesting whether or not the new athletic facilities has a gender neutral changing room).


To some extent. to be honest, you meet a lot of extremely different people here, so it's really hard to put us all in one category.


Not for everybody and not always


Well...I's not like...I can't say EVERYONE is....ok, yeah, they're accurate.


Somewhat. There is a pretty broad spectrum of both political and social diversity. The lower class students and moderates simply are not as vocal as the bleeding heart liberals (a term I use with affection). We do take our political correctness extremely seriously, which can limit the depth of some conversations. As far as sports go, yeah, we're mainly too dorky. Though there is a pretty tightly-knit group of athletes who really enjoy it. And we have a great network of intramural sports.


I would say that this stereotype is more inaccurate than it is accurate. Of course, every school has very apathetic students as well as teachers and administrators. But the pillars of Macalester are largely upheld, taught and lived at Macalester, by all members of the community. There ARE exceptions, but on the whole, Macalester meets its rosy image. If a student arrives and doesn't think so, he or she will get involved! Students, administrators, and teachers are always working to change the school for the better, some (superheroes) more than their fair share!


They are accurate. This school is one of the most liberal in the nation. It is not full of hippies though. And, even though it is this liberal a conservative, like myself, is still able to thrive here.


Meh, everyone on campus talks a lot about politics and what they think of government policies, but we're not nearly as active as we would like to seem. The political climate definitely leans way left, but we also have a solid (if small) group of Republicans and Libertarians. Everyone is pretty darn smart, and there are tons of hippies and hipsters, but we also have lots of athletes and future i-bankers and uncategorizable eccentrics.