nyu is a love-hate relationship. you're in the heart of the city, you get to explore great areas and have a college experience unlike (and in my opinion, much better) than any other school. you'll hear a lot of students here moaning about how much they hate nyu, but the truth is they wouldn't dream of going anywhere else. most of my classes have been great. there are always some dud teachers that kill the subject for you, but i've been legitimately interested in everything i've taken. the worst part of nyu, by far, is the red tape and the administration. there are a lot of logistical things that are a pain in the ass for students trying to register for classes, pay bills (oh those expensive bills), etc. nyu does a lot to "reach out" to it's students, but it feels like they don't really care. STAY AWAY FROM NYU COUNSELING. they aren't there to help you or do what's best for you, they are there to screen according to a green book of "depression warning signs" (yes, this actually exists and is given to every university employee) and keep you from making nyu look bad (throwing you in a hospital so that you don't kill yourself on nyu property)
If it wasn't split into different schools, NYU would be too big. However, since everyone is in a smaller school within NYU, I think it's just right. People impressed when I tell them I go to NYU. I spend most of my time in classrooms or the library. It is not a college town. NYU's administration seems to be ok, our president is awesome. Biggest recent controversy: the only one I can think of was last year when the college Republicans played some game that wanted to point out the illegal immigrants and then there was a protest. I don't feel like there is a lot of school pride. NYU is unusual because we don't have a campus per se, which is weird to many people. I'll always remember when I went to see the premier of Reign Over Me and all of the stars were there (Adam Sandler, Don CHeadle, Liv Tyler, Jada and Will Smith, etc.) at the Skirball Center (FOR FREE) at NYU. THe most frequent student complaints are that there isn't enough financial aid and that there isn't much community here.
My first three semesters at NYU were difficult. I didn't feel like I had found a place for myself or a group of friends that I really connected with. NYC is a huge city and it is overwhelming at first. It may take longer to get settled at NYU than at what NYU students fondly refer to as "campus colleges", but once you do you can't imagine going to school anywhere else. The residences are mostly converted from apartment buildings so you have your own kitchen, common room and bathroom. There is the option to do all your own grocery shopping and cooking or eat in the dining halls. Security personnel are friendly and courteous. NYU does an impeccable job of keeping its students safe. As a student at NYU you will feel like you are a true resident of New York City. Its were you will eat and socialize and walk everyday. I wouldn't say that there is as much of a school pride at NYU as there is a NYC pride.
NYU's college town is NY City below 23rd street and Williamsburg/Bushwick in Brooklyn. Technically campus is from Union Square South to Washington Square South, from 6th avenue to Broadway, but it really radiates much farther out than that. NYU has a wonderful administration, a president who has hugged 80% of the student body before their graduation, and amazing professors. There is no school pride, but students are very proud. We dont walk around in NYU sweatshirts, or have flags in our dorm rooms, but we're very proud of our school within a city. Unfortunately we've recently been known as a school of many controversies (suicides and drug busts), but its actually a very warm environment. The biggest student complaint is probably about Weinstein Dormatory being a concrete prison, but once you get past it, you realize its the same dorm that the Beastie Boys used to practice, and then its not so bad.
NYU is a school that fits many different types of students. NYU is the right school for anyone who is independent and goal oriented. There are tons of oppuntunities waiting to be had and going to NYU helps you realize that. The only time I would say NYU is not the "right" school for someone is if they are looking for campus life. There is campus life at NYU but no where near that of other schools. At other schools you may feel a need to join a frat or a sorority but at NYU it is almost not necessary as there are so many people to meet and befriend. NYU was the perfect school for me. The classes were large while some were small, teaching you how to handle different situations. There were some teachers I knew on a first name bases and others that never learned my name. Overall, New York University is an organized academia that I am proud to have known well.
If you're reading this and considering coming here, I assume that you already know what it's like, but in case you don't, I shall summarize things. NYU is quite large. Lots of students, and no, there isn't a designated campus, though many consider Washington Square Park (which is located in the center) to be the unofficial "quad", and I don't think that this is inaccurate. It's very expensive to come here, though many can afford it (I am not one of those people) so it is generally brushed aside by most of the student body. The administration and bureaucracy is admittedly awful, but if you can navigate it you're good to go. School pride/community is a joke, though most people come here knowing this/come here to avoid that stereotypical "college lifestyle".
The best thing about NYU is that it's in New York City. You have every opportunity at your fingertips. The trouble with NYU is that you have to do everything on your own. It is extremely impersonal if you are in one of the larger majors. I had two internships, both of which I found on my own. The departments designed to help with those kinds of things aren't very effective. People generally react positively when I say I went to NYU. Often they respond with something like, "Wow, that's a really good school; you must be really smart," which always makes me uncomfortable, because how do you respond to that without coming off totally arrogant? "Why, yes, it IS a really good school and I AM a genius. Thank you for reminding me."
The best thing about NYU is living in the city and never running out of things to do. Also that being emmersed in the city helps me to be independent and mature. Things I would change- have more gyms, pay less for tuition, get better and more accessible food for all the dining halls. I spend most of my time at my acting studio or in the area surrounding Washington Square Park. I think NYU has pretty great administrators...at least I can speak for the Drama dept. Not a lot of school pride. NYU is unusual in that it's not the stereotypical college in any sense-- no real campus, not a large greek/party life, no big school sporting events, BUT every room has its own bathroom!
Very little can beat the location of New York City, especially being in the East Village. It's an amazing experience and you meet a huge number of interesting people. There are a lot of great clubs and resources available to students. That being said, I go to Tisch for a program that is one of the top 5 in the world, which is the only way I can justify the $71,000/year that I am going into debt. If you aren't going into the school for something that the school is specifically good at, like one of the Tisch or Stern programs, I would suggest saving yourself a couple hundred thousand dollars and going elsewhere.
NYU is a lot of what I expected, in terms of education. I love the education at NYU and feel that it's top notch. The departments and professors are well qualified and teach really well (with a few exceptions). However, the social nature of NYU is okay but not amazing. People here live fast paced lives and consider themselves as very mature. Because of this, many do not act like your typical college students. Also, because of a lack of a real campus, the college feel is slightly missing. However, those who can handle fast paced lives and would love to live in NYC, should definitely give NYU a chance.