All I can say is that I hope I have a better dorm room life than this past year. In reality, it was Hell for me and I just want to forget it all. My freshman year was not what I expected and I don't feel like I was given the best out of the situation--it practiaclly ruined everything for me. One problem after the other and the so-called "compromise" wasn't one at all and favored the other person who should've been banned from school. It's hard to go into further detail without naming names and writing a couple of pages on it, so this is all I can say. I wasn't really impressed with the dorm life in Welch if smokers can be allowed to smoke in their room beneath me or anyone else for that fact, and that anyone with some ADD/learning problem can get in just because of that in hopes that studious people can help. It's just wrong and I will not be happy if it happens again. Thank goodness I can choose my rommates from here on out! I was extremely enraged with that, but the academics side was much better. I don't think I had a problem that I couldn't handle myself aside from that one teacher I didn't care for (but that's what moms are for). I'm sorry for the rant, but it's how I feel and I hope it helps. If it happened to me, it could happen to others, and with all the problems it caused me I don't want other incoming freshmen to deal with it.
I do think it is important to mention some of OWU's housing opportunties. We do have the classic dorm; the double with two people in an open room and a community bathroom. Dorm-wise we also offer quads; four people in a room, two bedrooms, a common room, and a bathroom included with the room (we have the most quads on campus so freshmen will mostly likely end up in one). OWU also offers a unique housing option called a Small Living Unit or SLUs. SLUs hold ten to fifteen students, sophomore-senior and are themed. The point of the SLUs is to give back to the OWU community in some way. So, each student living in the SLU has to complete a house project based upon their theme. The themes for the 08-09 school year: The House of Modern Foreign Language, The Women's House, two Creative Arts Houses, The House of the Thought, The House of the Black Culture, The International House, The Tree House, and The House of Inner Faith.
At OWU, you have to earn the right to say you survived out in the middle of nowhere for four years. Usually, about 600 people enter in their freshman year and only about 350-400 will graduate in four years time. OWU is tougher than it looks. It may not be even because of your grade point average. It may be financial or personal reasons. I will say this- as a drawback, the retention rate is under 75%. Another drawback many people say is that there is not enough specificity in classes to make them want to be intriguing and continue the programs. I want a whole bunch of people who left because of the professors and their standards or the curriculum being too broad. OWU is generous to people but OWU does have its blind spots. If you don't take serious heed to them, then you may have to transfer. It is what it is. You pick OWU, you need to find out up close and personal if this is the right choice for you.
I think that the people who have negative things to say about OWU are always the ones who came in believing the stereotypes. Know ahead of time that you WILL have to break out of your comfort zone to make friends (as you will at any school), you WILL have to work hard to get good grades and keep scholarships, and you WILL have the choice to participate in activities or not. I think those are the main reasons that people feel negatively about their experience. The level of enjoyment you get out of your time at OWU is in YOUR hands only, so on that inevitable day during your first semester when you feel like packing everything up and quitting, think about what YOU have done to put yourself in that situation. And think of what YOU can do to make your experience amazing. The tools and options are all there, but you have to make the move.
Money is a big issue at OWU. Because it is a private school be prepared to pay more than you expect even if you do get a nice scholarship (which is definitely available!). Room, board, and food are all more expensive than I think they should be. It would be cheaper off campus but don't expect to get off. Also, the scholarships do not increase year to year (but tuition does!). So although that full tuition scholarship is nice freshman year...senior year you may pay as much as some public college students. But don't discount my school just because of money. The experience here has really opened my eyes to the bigger world. And it has made me a more open person in general. OWU has been a great place to mature and really finish "growing up" into the adult I always wanted to be.
It is a welcomng place where you can meet the most interesting and caring people and make friends that will last a lifetime. Education wise, every professor genuinely wants you to succeed in whatever you did and was always willing to help you if you fell short. They encourage you to come by after class and make an effort to get to know you so that you can thrive and prosper at whatever it is you are doing. OWU is a place to thrive in, with endless possibilities and opportunities for anyone that wants them.
Its a great school, no doubt, if what you are looking for is a close knit education. It is great in sciences, art, philosophy and history. Other departments lack because there is alack of student interest most likely. The dorms are shit, and the food is ok, but you dont go off to gollege to be pampered, its an experience and the shit that matters is ones willingness to engange with peeps and learn from them. It is what you make of it, so be positive, you know?
OWU's computer network needs some work, and the wireless at the moment is nigh nonexistent, though they seem to slowly be trying to change that. Computer availability at the library and sparse labs can also sometimes be questionable, particularly around finals week, so printing is no fun. Most annoying is just how often the network seems to go down, particularly with the email system, which has more than once failed to send emails for me and others.
Why would you go to OWU instead of Denison/OSU/Miami/Kenyon? Delaware grows on you in a strange way. At first the town is creepy, the towney's are drunk and smelly, and you feel like a long way from home. But as you make closer friends and discover great, random things/events about the area and the school, you realize that OWU is the ideal college experience. Like a fine wine, the OWU experience gets better with age.
Definitely the friendliness of the people there. Everyone was really nice when I went to visit and seemed to care about whether I enjoyed myself. There's also a big emphasis on practical uses of whatever it is you're learning. You're not just learning to just a requirement out of the way, you're learning in order to take it along with you and apply to whatever you ultimately decide to do.