The student body is fairly diverse. There are a lot of caucasians and asians but not that many hispanics or african americans. Most of my friends come from diverse backgrounds. However, I have seen groups of friends that are predominately one race. NYU also has a large gay community and an active LGBT scene. I think everyone has the freedom to believe what they want to believe in, without the fear of being persecuted. Most people are left leaning, there are very few republicans on campus but the ones that do exist are pretty vocal about their political beliefs. Most students are really stylish. After awhile I felt the pressure to look good and stop wearing lounge pants and sweatshirts to class. For boys, collared shirts and polos seem to be popular. Girls like tight jeans and pretty tops. There are also a lot of fashion forward people that look like they stepped out of the pages of Nylon magazine. It is not a good place for those who want a lot of individualized attention from counselors and professors. If you do want that, you have to actively pursue it. NYU is also an environment that supports independence. So if a student can not handle doing things alone, they might not enjoy going to NYU. NYU students are from all over the world. But I have met alot of students from NJ and NY. Regarding financial backgrouds, I know alot of people like me who had to take out loans and depend on scholarships in order to attend NYU. However, I have met some students that don't need the aid and have paid off the tuition up front. That a lot.
NYU is extremely diverse in terms of race, religion, and sexual orientation. It is not uncommon to see these students interact and be in the same group of friends. Usually, there are a lot more girls than boys in each group, but that is not necessarily by choice, but because there are simply more girls. However, socioeconomically, NYU mostly represents only the upper middle class. This might even be necessary to attend NYU, considering its high tuition and terrible financial aid. More importantly is the spending money required to come here. The temptation that arises from passing many clothing and food stores just on the way to class is hard to overcome. Not only that, entertainment is expensive. On most other college campuses, frat or house parties are free, but at NYU, Greek life is practically nonexistent. NYU students have to find their own fun in bars, clubs, concerts, and the theater, the price of which escalates quickly. Students here are overwhelmingly liberal. During the primaries this year everyone was excited and eager to hear the results after each voting. When Barack Obama spoke in Washington Square Park in September, it was the talk of the school for the next week. People get really passionate about their political beliefs, and it is interesting to hear everybody's views.
No one feels out of place at NYU. I mean, NO ONE. There is some sort of group or club or union for everyone. Literally. I have never seen a place where there is no outcasts because there are so many groups, there is no way a person could not find one that they didn't like. If they did, they could start a club of their own. And since frats and sororities aren't as popular as they are in other universities, there isn't pressure to go greek. Most students wear whatever, but generally, you can tell that the girls especially have a sort of "New York fashion flare" about them. The trends you see in magazines are the trends that a lot of the girls wear. Still, there are others that do their own thing. 4 tables of students: there would probably be the Stern table, and then three other tables with all kinds of people. Stern is kind of in its own world. Students are pretty politically active, and I would say the majority are either apathetic or left. Students speculate on what they will earn one day, but most students say that the Stern kids will earn the most, and the Tisch kids will be starving artists. It's not completely true, but we joke about that kind of stuff just because we know how intense the Sternies are.
It's hard to be completely out of place at NYU just because there seems to be a place for everything. There are clubs for every different religious group. I would say though that if you are a Republican at NYU, you are going to be a minority. However the Republicans club at NYU seemed to have banded together and gotten a kick out of this. The controversy they stirred with their "Find the illegal immigrant game" last year was unbelievable. I feel that dress varies from year to year and from different schools. Of course you can recognize the business school Sternies with their suits. On-campus freshman year students are the ones that dress most lax probably because dorms are a block away. However once you're an upperclassman that changes and at least for me so did my apparel. There seems to be a big population of NYU students from New York, New Jersey, Long Island and also California. I think no matter where you're from there are different financial backgrounds, but everyone talks about how much money they will earn. The Stern students are basking in how much money business will make them, while liberal arts students tend to wonder more about how they are going to repay those student loans.
Many racial, religious, LGBT organizations. It has broadened my horizons from my predominantely hispanic hometown. People here are extremely politically correct so don't expect to say "that's so gay" and get away with it. I am the type of student who feels out of place because I want a place where students sit under trees to hang out, and have dorm parties, go to basketball games, and have school pride. This school is NOT for the school spirited. Dining hall: Table #1: all asian; table #2: all LGBT; table #3): jersey girls; table #4): more asians. students typically stick with their backgrounds for example, jersey girls with other girls like themselves, asians with asians. Financial backgrounds most prevalent, wealthy or not wealthy at all. Very politically aware/active. Leftists. People here are obsessed with their future careers (besides the Peace Corps people)
First, I would say that not all students are that integrated with each other. I think NYU is more conducive to bubbles of networks (like teams or clubs) than cross-interaction. I don't think students necessarily feel "out of place," but I also don't think students necessarily feel any sense of "belonging" or "community." There's too many people either way - you've got to relate to someone, but you're not going to relate to the majority. Most students are from the New York area, New Jersey, or California. We're more financially diverse than say, the Ivy League schools, but it's something that could be improved if we had a larger endowment. Politically, it is definitely predominantly left, which is logical, since people who choose to go to school in New York are probably also likely to be Democrats, but there are a fair amount of Republicans as well.
I've seen that being at NYU, or even in the city, makes people more comfortable with the idea of sexual and racial diversity, even if they weren't before. It's hard to generalize about the way people dress at NYU when there are so many different types of people. But on any given day, you'd definitely find lots of people in Gould Plaza in suits. Some fashionable people. Then there was the Uggs and jean skirt kick a while back. Never really fancied the fashion trends that flew through NYU. Most people have a good amount of money, considering that 4 years at NYU is about $200K. And NYU is cheap on handing out the financial aid and scholarships. So for the rest of us without money, well, it isn't pleasant. NYU's pretty liberal, although you'll find a right winger splashed into the mix here and there.
Unlike a lot of other colleges, Greek Life at NYU is not as prevalent; however, there are sororities and fraternities. Because it's hard to make friends at NYU, a lot of people join Greek Life in order to meet new people and make friends. Athletic events are also basically non-existant at NYU, so there are rarely ever sports-related social events. Because NYU doesn't have a campus, though, students have the opportunity to find entertainment and friends outside of the university as well. Freshmen dorms are lively in the beginning of the year, which is when most people find most of their friends. I'm currently a part of NYU's newspaper, the Washington Square News, and though it is a lot of work, it's a great place to meet people and build your resume.
Admittedly coming from a lower middle class working family, having never traveled outside the country or even been to a museum until I was old enough to go on my own, I felt out of place at NYU at first. Having a full time job while going to school did not allow for too many extracurricular activities. I found that I related closely to small amount of people who also happened to be transfers or just happened to be more from my socio-economic class. I did have many interesting conversations with a diverse group of people. I learned a lot by talking about personal experiences with those who has experienced more of the world than me. Most people I came to know were politically aware. In the art program most are liberal or center.
I don't think anyone would really feel out of place at NYU - there are groups and niches for almost everyone. Maybe the type of person that hates big cities, but that's there own fault for coming to school in NYC. Students here are from EVERYWHERE, but you do notice a lot from NYC, Westchester, Long Island, New Jersey, simply because of proximity, I guess. Also, a lot (but definitely not all) students are privileged (NYU is NOT cheap). A lot of students would consider themselves liberal, but perhaps that's only the perception because leftists feel very comfortable being vocal about their views in NYC. The NYU College Republicans group is very active as well and has been featured on the national news for a few of their stunts.