Although some people claim that UChicago is the place "where fun goes to die", that's definitely been changing over the last ...
Although some people claim that UChicago is the place "where fun goes to die", that's definitely been changing over the last few years. The campus is one of the most beautiful in the country--think Hogwarts with a pretty quad. The College at the University, which is for undergraduates, is just the right size--hovering around 5000 students, it's large enough so that you'll never feel bored, but small enough so that you'll be sure to find your place. Hyde Park has a few "college-town" sort of hangouts, mostly in the form of bookstores and cafes, but the real draw is the city of Chicago (a short 20-minute Metra ride away!) University of Chicago is located just blocks from the lake too, which makes for great beach trips during those precious warm days.
People at UChicago have an eclectic, yet pulled-together style---you definitely don't see people wearing full-body sweatpants all day every day here. Since the weather can be pretty horrid, you see tons of snow boots and long puffer coats, along with Hunter rain boots. Most people seem to have a pretty polished aesthetic, but this question is so hard to answer simply because everyone's style is so varied. UChicago does have more than its fair share of hipsters, though, so think skinny jeans and huge grandpa sweaters, beanies, etc.
The best place to get work done is the Regenstein Library, although it's not the prettiest place in the world. The Reg, as it's called, is also a good place to study because it offers everything you'll need to pull an all-nighter in one place. There's a recently opened cafe, which means you won't have to trudge out into the cold to get your coffee. A great way to study at the reg is to grab a study room with some of your friends! It also has carrels that are quite private if you need to get serious studying done. There is also a computer lab in the basement, and the first floor has tons of brand new, beautiful computers for student use.
The few blocks surrounding campus offer a variety of restaurants, cute coffee shops, and other essentials, like drugstores and a couple of grocery stores. A few blocks east, you see beautiful Lake Michigan! I personally love going to the 57th Street beach in the warmer months--and yes, it is just like a real beach, minus the saltwater smell! To the south, things get a tiny bit dicier, but most students don't have a reason to go there.
The unique thing about our physical campus would have to be the beautiful gothic architecture, which is lovely whether under the changing colors of fall leaves or covered with a dusting (or a blanket, let's be real here...) of snow. The other truly unique thing about UChicago is its tradition of free and open discourse. Everyone is encouraged to respect the opinion of others, and you'll find that many students, if not all, respect your opinions and want to engage in debate, not tear you down. It can be an exciting place for the mind!
The dorms at UChicago vary widely, both in location and character. I lived in Pierce Tower, on the north end of campus, which is eleven stories tall and has a dining hall in the basement. Pierce rooms are very small but efficient (about 90 sq feet) and have a mix of doubles and singles. It is possible for incoming students to get singles if they want. Pierce has a great house culture (each house has 30-100 students) and a house lounge where people study and hang out.
Obviously, the University of Chicago is high up in the rankings. I also wanted to go to a college that offered me more than just the classroom experience--not only a great community on campus, but also an interesting life off-campus. The city of Chicago is so close to the University that you get the best of both worlds.
Classes go by fast because of the ten-week quarter system, so professors usually plunge right in to the material. As an English major, I attend mostly seminar (small discussion) classes of about 8-15 people. I have about 100 pages of reading per class per week, which is definitely manageable. For these kinds of smaller classes, attendance is important because it also affects your participation (you can't speak if you're not there, duh), but for bigger lecture classes, skipping a couple isn't noticeable.
It's hard to say what the most popular organization on campus is, because there isn't really one that dominates UChicago's diverse student clubs scene. I am involved in Rhythmic Bodies in Motion, a dance group that puts on a spring show and has participants from every major and lots of different interests! Dorms have their own culture--the dorm I lived in my first two years, Pierce, was known for its camaraderie, and people usually left their doors open. Athletic events are not the most popular thing to do on campus, but if you want to watch a sporting event, there are always some people there. Guest speakers are more popular, especially because University of Chicago is able to draw some big names. Theater is also fairly popular--the University has several student productions a quarter, as well as the nearby Court Theater, which puts on professional and acclaimed shows. The dating scene is a little thin, but not hopeless! It just depends on how much you put yourself out there in situations where you might meet new people. I've been dating my boyfriend for two years now! People party pretty much every weekend, and fraternities and sororities have a growing influence on campus. My boyfriend and I are both involved in greek life, which is how I've met some of my closest friends. Off-campus, people usually go downtown or explore some of the fantastic Chicago neighborhoods (Chinatown, Wicker Park, etc.). Chicago has fantastic shopping, culture, and nightlife, obviously.
The University of Chicago is fairly diverse, with especially strong Jewish and Asian populations. However, the interests of its students are so varied that it would take days to name every student organization and club on campus. The only kind of student who would feel out of place here is one who hates studying. Different types of students definitely interact--I'm part of Greek life at the school, which has lately been growing its presence on campus, but I have friends and acquaintances that span the spectrum of personalities and interests here at UChicago. Describing the tables of students at the dining hall is a little silly, simply because every table at the dining hall is assigned by house. A house is typically anywhere from 50-200 students, and this is your home base (a social group you can rely on) while you live in housing, which is typically for the first two years. So every table in the dining hall boasts a unique mix of students! Most students are politically aware, and many love debating current issues. A few students participated in Occupy Chicago this year!
Academics at the University of Chicago are rigorous, there's no getting around it.One of the great things about this school is that class sizes are generally small, especially in Humanities major like mine (English), and that means that if you take a class with a well-known professor (like one of the 90+ Nobel laureates the University can claim), you have a chance to work closely with a giant in the field! Teachers will know your name if you put yourself out there by speaking in class and going to office hours. Students study quite a bit--it is a top 10 university, after all. Finals week is especially grueling, and the quarter system is really fast-paced, so students should know how to stay on top of their game. The education at the University of Chicago is famously geared toward learning for its own sake. Classes, especially the unusual ones like the Reality TV Analysis class I took this past quarter, are focused on thinking about old issues in new ways. However, there's no doubt that a degree from University of Chicago is a foot in the door in many industries, and the University has a fantastic career services division (CAPS) that works incessantly to help students find jobs and internships.
Students at University of Chicago are really intellectual and focused on schoolwork. This isn't all bad though--they actually love discussing hot button issues, debating everything from politics to philosophy to this year's Oscar picks at the dining table.
If I could go back in time and talk to myself during my senior year, I would tell myself to cherish the time I have with my f...
If I could go back in time and talk to myself during my senior year, I would tell myself to cherish the time I have with my friends, family, and my little town. Going out of state for college has made me realize that we cannot take the people who love us for granted. I have a newfound appreciation for my quiet, little home town that I was constantly trying to break away from. I would tell myself, "things won't be the same when you leave this place. Love everyone as much as you can before you're far away." I would tell myself that college is the most exciting experience of my life, but also to take every opportunity to make memories with the people you grew up with before things change. I would tell myself as a senior that the people at this college will change your view of the world and to embrace that change. I would say above all, however, that no matter where you are going, remember where you come from and keep it in your heart.
Someone who is prepared to work hard. Someone who seeks and appreciates diversity in all its forms.
I prefer not to brag, but I am very proud of the fact that my university is fourth in the country and it has the best economics program in the world. If I am bragging, I just talk about how diverse it is and how much I love that fact.
If I had the opportunity to talk to myself as a high school senior, I would tell myself the importance of living a balanced c...
If I had the opportunity to talk to myself as a high school senior, I would tell myself the importance of living a balanced college life. I eventually discovered this on my own, but if I had known this from the beginning, my transition to college life at the University of Chicago would have been a lot smoother. For one, make use of your time. Procrastination does not translate into college life. You have strict deadlines for multiple projects, exams, and papers. Therefore, budgeting your time will help you avoid extra stress, ensure that you do well on your assignments, and reward you with an understanding of the concepts you are studying. Of course, it is crucial to leave time for yourself and personal matters. However, you can still be productive academically outside of the classroom. Get involved in student organizations that are of interest to you. Explore fields of study that you have little prior knowledge on. Do not shy away from talking to different students or professors. Outside sources to learning are valuable. You will be surprised how much your interests and perspectives will develop once you open yourself up to something outside of your definition of normal.
A person who craves a challenging environment that encourages critical thinking should go to the University of Chicago. This person should be e ready to test their tolerance for uncertainity, think outside of box, and be confronted by ideas that are completely foregin to them.
What I brag about most when I tell my friends about the University of Chicago is the demanding yet rewarding environment. The University of Chicago involves hard work, self-discipline, and initiative. My undergraduate studies have rounded my individual being by exposing me to various academic fields, areas that I may have not necessarily explored on my own. Rather than considering graduation to be a hiatus to my intellectual development, I found it to be a catalyst. Reflecting on my experiences, I have realized the importance of academic excellence accompanied by a diverse body of knowledge.
The University of Chicago has over 500 registered student organizations, over 400 of which are for undergraduates, so there i...
The University of Chicago has over 500 registered student organizations, over 400 of which are for undergraduates, so there isn't really a group of "most popular" groups. There is literally a club or organization for everyone. A list of all of them can be found at https://collegeadmissions.uchicago.edu/studentlife/activities/clubs.shtml As for activities, most students study/procrastinate more than they do anything else. Indeed, students have to do so much work to succeed at this school. However, we also know how to have fun. Here are some of the things students do: --Fraternity parties on Friday and Saturday nights --Concerts and shows by Off-Off Campus (a well-known improv group) and other student organizations --Free food all over campus all the time --Summer Breeze, a huge concert and carnival held in Spring Quarter (the headliner this year is Ludacris) --Scav, an enormous scavenger hunt that takes place Spring Quarter --Go downtown for concerts, shows, shopping, lots of stuff. The Resident Masters of all the dorms also sponsor awesome trips to Cubs games, concerts (Yo-Yo Ma and Lang Lang, for example), and other fun things. --Hyde Park Jazz Festival in Fall Quarter --Skating on the outdoor Midway ice rink in the winter --Intramural Sports (think ultimate frisbee and inner-tube water polo) School can be tough, but there are always fun and interesting things to do here.
After all the acceptance and rejection letters arrived, I was left with two schools to choose from. The first school had awarded me an outstanding scholarship, while the second, the University of Chicago, was simply excellent. After visiting the first school, I realized that it was simply a larger version of my high school: same types of people, same easy and uninteresting classes, same low standards of academic excellence, same overemphasis on sports and partying. The benefits of the scholarship would not have outweighed the misery that being at that school would have caused. Deciding where to go to school is about deciding where you will be most fulfilled. Every school will have some trait that you don't like, but if what you like about the school outweighs what you don't like to such a degree that you think you could be happy and successful, then that is the school you should choose. The price tag, reputation, prestige of a school are worthless if you aren't able to thrive there.
With relation to sports, there are three groups of people on campus, with each successive group being larger than the preceding group. First, there are the student athletes who train and compete in official NCAA athletic competitions. (Participants in a few of the more intense sport clubs such as crew and water polo may also belong to this category.) These students tend to live in the Max Pavlesky dorm (because it is the closest to the two athletic centers), they tend to all be friends (or at least know each other), and they are the students who are most likely to attend sporting events at the university. The second group includes students who participate in sport clubs or intramural sports and/or who exercise on a regular basis. This second group is the largest and consists of widest variety of students. Finally, the third group is composed to those students who do not participate in intramural sports and who exercise irregularly or not at all. In the past few years, the prominence of Greek life on campus has increased while the overall level of quirkiness of the student body has decreases. A side effect of these developments has been that the sports scene on campus has become slightly more prominent as well, and this trend is likely to continue in the same direction. For more information about athletics at the University of Chicago, visit http://athletics.uchicago.edu/index.html.
Honestly, what students complain about most is the weather. The academics are difficult, sometimes insanely so, but we get used to that. The weather, on the other hand, is completely out of our control, and it can get extremely cold and extremely windy here.
The academics at the University of Chicago are tough but excellent. On one hand, there are the classes like calculus and chemistry which can seem impossible. Calculus is difficult because the university requires that all first-year students learn how to do proofs (i.e. proofs by induction, delta-epsilon proofs, etc.--not the easy things you do in geometry) and all first-year calculus courses are taught by graduate students who don't always speak English very well. Chemistry is difficult because of the subject material and the time commitment. For example, labs last about three and a half hours each week, and students go into exams worrying that the fourteen hours they spent studying weren't enough. Calculus, chemistry, economics, and some other classes are graded on a curve, which is good in the sense that getting a 40% on a midterm might earn you a B+, but it also means that the number of A's and B's awarded is limited. On the other hand, there are classes that are as awesome as calculus can be awful. This year I took a social science sequence called Self, Culture, and Society. We read books like Adam Smith’s Wealth of Nations, Max Weber’s The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism, Emile Durkheim’s The Elementary Forms of Religious Life, and Michel Foucault’s Discipline and Punish: The Birth of the Prison. The books and the class discussion about them were fascinating. Going to Self became one of the best parts of my week. Students here study a ton. We still have fun, but getting away with not studying for an exam or not doing extra problems to understand the material just does not happen. Most weeks students go out to frat parties or other events on Friday nights, but then they stay in on Saturday nights to get work done. The University of Chicago fosters an excellent learning environment, so students here are not very competitive. Although in some classes like chemistry and economics students are competing with their classmates for the higher grades, mostly the attitude is that "we're all in this together," where "this" is surviving exams, studying for crazy amounts of time, and making it through this school. Also, with so many student organizations (over 500) and other things to be involved in, everyone can excel in their own way, so neither the academic or extracurricular environments are highly competitive. Professors are very accessible, and they are always available to help you and answer your questions. Many classes, such as calculus and chemistry, also include discussion sessions and problem sessions led by T.A.s that are designed to help students better understand the course material. Granted, these sessions are not always useful, but in the case that they aren't, there are college tutors and other resources for students. The university puts forth equally as much effort and resources toward creating a thriving learning community as it does toward preparing its students for post-graducaiton. The Career Advising and Planning Services (CAPS) is absolutely outstanding. CAPS advisors are available to help students write excellent resumes and cover letters and work on interview skills. Also, the Chicago Careers In... (CCI) programs are truly incredible. They are an excellent way to explore careers, make connections, and get internships and jobs. The CCI programs consistently hold events designed to give students the opportunity to talk to people in different fields, hear experts speak, and network. For example, over spring break, I went to Washington, D.C., with Chicago Careers in Public and Social Service (CCIPSS). We met with alumni at the White House, State Department, Peace Corps, USAID, the Brookings Institute, and Senator Durbin’s office. We had lunch with a Senior Advisor to the President and dinner with a Foreign Affairs Officer with the State Department who spent six months in Iraq working directly for General Patreus. The university completely understands the importance of career exploration and networking in order to get internships and jobs. CAPS also runs Chicago Career Connection (CCC), an online resource for students. Through CCC, students can schedule appointments with CAPS advisors and research and apply for thousands of jobs (there are at least 60,000 posted on CCC). The only downside to CAPS is that it takes about two weeks to get an appointment.
Of course, most of us have heard the infamous saying, "University of Chicago - the place where fun comes to die." As true as ...
Of course, most of us have heard the infamous saying, "University of Chicago - the place where fun comes to die." As true as that may have been in the past, currently the university has seen a dramatic shift in terms of the student population and sociability. Within the last decade, dozens of new buildings have been erected in UChicago's gorgeous Hyde Park campus, including: Gerald Ratner Athletic Center, Max Palevsky dormitory, South Campus dormitory and dining hall, the Gordon Center for Integrative Research, the Mansueto Library (endearingly called the "reg egg" after the Regenstein Library to which it is connected), and finally the brand new Logan Arts Center. Collectively, these additions have made UChicago a more appealing option for many prospective students and brought more viable resources to the campus. But to answer the original question at hand, at UChicago it is very difficult to pinpoint one stereotype. The university presents an international, eclectic mix of students; 10% are from Chicago while the remaining 90% are from all corners of the world, representing all 50 states and over 70 countries. Because of this cosmopolitan "melting pot," students frequently break through common stereotypes and work together on problem sets, play on intramural sports teams, and yes, go out together too. While it is only natural that students eventually form their own groups and such, the university does not reinforce the typical stereotypes of the jock, frat kid, or geek, but instead allows for ample opportunity to meet students from all walks of life. To some, it can be even seen as the place where "fun comes to thrive."
The best thing has to be the classes and class sizes--the personal attention and diversity of offerings is unparalleled. One ...
The best thing has to be the classes and class sizes--the personal attention and diversity of offerings is unparalleled. One thing I might change is to make the "core" courses take a little less time. It's great to get such a well rounded experience but for kids who really have a passion for a specific major early on it's difficult. Our size is perfect--we're medium, campus is walkable, you often run into people you know. People are always impressed when I tell them I go here. Most of my time on campus is spent on the quad in summer, in the library in winter. The most frequent complaint is probably the lack of grade inflation tied with the weather (Chicago winters can be killer)--but kids generally bond commiserating over both.
We are international, quirky, very welcoming, all religions, races, nationalities, all types. We are a complete amalgamation of the world and we accept everyone.
They are all important--everyone will have an argument as to why!
Classes are small and personal for the most part--especially as you get more advanced in your major. My favorite class has to be a Human Rights Seminar aptly titled What is a Human? We read such diverse materials and the class was small--we had really rousing discussions and the professor let us choose our final paper topics--mine ended up motivating my BA thesis. My least favorite has to be anything in the math requirement. I just feel like our basic level math professors are generally not that easy to follow, but then again I'm not all that great at math! Class participation is very common--you will always be encouraged to speak up--but professors realize not all students are outgoing and they are often understanding. My major is so cool (Comparative Human Development) because it's interdisciplinary. I can take classes in all the subjects I'm interested in--anthro, philo, socio, human rights, law--and generally I can make them count toward my major. It's given me a really wide breadth of knowledge and interests that I'll keep with me for life. Education here is definitely about learning for its own sake, but having the Uchicago name behind you is great on the resume too.
Overall, I love it. i can't imagine myself anywhere else. I love being at a place where nerdy debates and jokes about Plato a...
Overall, I love it. i can't imagine myself anywhere else. I love being at a place where nerdy debates and jokes about Plato are commonplace lunch conversation. I love that there are so many student groups that can cater to basically any interest. I love the size of the school; it's small enough that it's not overwhelming, but not so small it's stifling. That isn't to say I don't have my share of complaints about it. The workload isn't quite it. There is a tendency for the administration to not be as receptive to student voices as I believe it should be for the price we are paying for this school. I wish, for example, there were graduated dining plans much like there are at other schools instead of the current plans for people living in housing. I also wish Hyde Park had more to offer in terms of places to go (although this is getting better - we're getting a movie theater soon, and we just got a 24-hour diner that's pretty good). However, there is a lot of good coffee on campus, and for that, as some of the most studious people in the world, we are fortunate.
One of the sayings we love here at the University of Chicago is "where fun comes to die." Most people probably view people at the University of Chicago as nerds who are up all night studying in some masochistic hell in vain search of some ill-defined enlightenment called "the life of the mind." I'm not saying that's not true to some extent, but I do want to stress that while we do love learning here and while those sad nights in the Regenstein Library do happen (more often than most of us would like), most of us do know how to live a little and have fun! We're in a wonderful city filled with great things, and when we have the time (and even at times when we don't!), most of us love to explore it.
The academic environment here sometimes can be overwhelming. Most classes are made up of 25 people or fewer and are heavily discussion-driven, which I love. This isn't always true. In, say, economics classes or science core classes, there can be over a hundred students in a single class. And yeah, the academics are pretty difficult here. I can't tell you how many times I wonder how much higher my GPA would be if I were at a different school. Being a paid dispenser of caffeine (read: barista), at the library, I have seen the eyes of desperation during midterm and finals week. However, I love it all. I have been in several classes where it always seemed we didn't have enough time to finish talking about a work because students wanted to participate. It's not uncommon to make jokes about whether or not Plato would think a Rolex approaches the form of a watch more than a cheap watch that still tells time. There are awesome, awesome classes available (there are also some not that awesome ones).
Academics are rather intense at the University of Chicago. It is impossible for any student here to enroll in stereotypical "...
Academics are rather intense at the University of Chicago. It is impossible for any student here to enroll in stereotypical "slacker classes" that you might find at other universities, but I would say that most students here are happy with that. Each students spends their first year or first two years fulfilling the Core requirements. The Core is our liberal arts curriculum, designed to give all students extensive experience in all academic fields before selecting a major. Humanities and social sciences classes are small (capped at 19 students) and discussion-based, and the math and science classes are usually lecture-style, but rarely include more than 50 students. Students study quite often, but we make time for relaxation and fun. The best part about UChicago is the fact that nearly all of the students genuinely enjoy learning, which means great class discussions and participation.
Some common stereotypes about UChicago students are that we are nerds, anti-social, and spend all of our time locked up in our room studying. This could not be farther from the truth! While it's true that most people here are nerds about one thing or another (and proud of it), there are plenty of social people and social events to attend every week. The work load here can be a bit heavy, but I don't know anyone who doesn't have at least a few hours every week for some fun. A much more accurate description of UChicago students would be to say that we love learning, we all have fun in our own way, and we take on our challenging schedules eagerly.
I couldn't be happier with my choice to attend the University of Chicago. When I initially told all of my friends that I was ...
I couldn't be happier with my choice to attend the University of Chicago. When I initially told all of my friends that I was coming here, the general reactions were, "I guess you won't be going to a single party for the next four years," and "Wow! I had no idea you were that smart!" With that being said, this school will definitely push you to your limits academically. Countless hours are spent in the library, but the funny thing is; everyone needs to get work done, so going to the library is almost always done with friends, and is not really seen as too much of a drag. I love the size of this school, as I did not want to go to a University with 50,000 students, but also wanted more than 750. I think this 5,000-6,000 student size is perfect, as you still meet plenty of new people every time you go out, but its also not hard to know where everything and everyone lives and interacts. Although the school spirit for athletics sucks (I'm a football player and it tends to be pretty depressing looking up at the stands), everyone still supports the athletes and school in general. Overall I love the challenge of school and competing with some of the best students around the world. As far as the party scene goes, there typically is not too much going on during the week, which I like since that helps keep you focused on your studies, but on the weekends it is easy to find a party close to the dorms. These are always fun, as UIC and Loyolla kids always come down to party with us. The best thing about this school? You are but one 10 minute ride on the metra from the greatest city in the world, Chicago.
The academics at the University of Chicago are as to be expected, very challenging. USA today ranked us #5, and we are #5 for a reason. I am only a freshman, so my core has been relatively harmless thus far in terms of time and hardness. The biggest thing that I have taken away is how much more I have learned in my time at this school. To get to listen to the #6 best economist in the world every Tuesday for four hours is simply incredible. I always thought that Plato and Socrates were pretty boring, but when your in a class of 20 with an open discussion on the book with some of the smartest kids our there, you really embrace the competition, and the truly genius ideas that are being said. The class sizes here are awesome, as all the professors know your name, and want you to approach them on a first name basis. This does make it vital to participate in class, but that just helps you as a student. In overall terms, going through the Uchicago education will teach you how to learn, and because of its reputation among companies and America as a whole, you will have one of the best opportunities out there to get a great job.
The typical stereotype for a "Uchicago kid" goes right along with the slogan that the university of Chicago is the place where "fun goes to die." Although i would be lying if I said there are not a good amount of geeks at this school, there is plenty of fun to be had. The nice thing about this school is you will not ever be lured into doing something you do not have to do. Because the curriculum here is indeed so challenging, if you have a midterm on the upcoming Monday and there is a party that Saturday night, everyone understands that you need to stay in and study and get some rest. With that said, there are three main fraternities that throw parties generally every Friday and Saturday which are all open any kid in the school. Personally I like this a lot, because I know at big schools such as Ohio State a lot of times the party's are invite only, and at apartments. With all of this taken into account, at Uchicago there are definitely plenty of kids whose only priority is school, but if you want to come here and still have a good time, there is a good time to be had.
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