I love Pitt. The school offers me so much to do, whether educational or for fun. The best thing about this school is the community. When people ask you where you go to school, you're proud to say that you go to Pitt. it's not so big that you get lost, but not too small that it just feels like a different high school.
There's nothing else like it.
My favorite thing about the University of Pittsburgh is its urban campus. Oakland, where most of the campus is located, is its own little city with large buildings and small businesses on every street. But, if one wanted to get into a larger city environment, they could take a short public bus ride into Downtown Pittsburgh with their student ID since bus fare is included in our tuition. Also, if there comes a time when you get tired of the city, you can walk to Schenley Park which is covered in lush green grass and you can not even tell that it is right outside of a city.
If I could change one thing about Pitt, it would be the weather. It rains quite often and winters can be pretty harsh, but the bus system helps a lot when you need to get around campus and do not want to be exposed to the elements.
There is a lot of school pride and spirit here and I really enjoy it because it gives our school a big sense of community. I feel like I could go up to any random person I come across and start a conversation with them just because everyone seems so relatable and has qualities in common with myself.
My favorite experience I have had at Pitt so far would have to be the school-sponsored free Kesha concert that was held last year. Looking around at the crowd, it seemed like the majority of the school was there and I was happy to be able to share that experience with so many of my peers. Cobra Starship is performing this year and I am sure that concert will be just as powerful and fun.
Pitt is awesome and I've loved my time here! Everyone has a lot of Pitt pride and largely for that reason we have an incredible alumni network that are very involved. I'm in the college of business administration, which creates a small school feel while still providing all the benefits of a larger university. My advisor has been so helpful, and worked my schedule so that I will complete 2 majors, 2 minors, and 2 certificates in 4 years, including a semester abroad. Admittedly there are some classes that I would have rather avoided, but overall the majority of my professors have been great and are still good resources. Pitt isn't generally ranked nearly as high as I think it should be, but I know that administration is doing their best to improve rankings, since they sometimes do make a difference.
My overall opinion is that it's a pretty standard school.
Regarding the food, it's probably a little above average. Your meal plan allows you to use "swipes" at all-you-can-eat dining halls, and "dining dollars" at fast food-like places. The two dining halls are alright. At their best, they're actually pretty good. Sometimes you'll get lucky and there'll be a pretty good specialty meal (they have a different one every day), all the stations will be open, and there won't be any lines. However, more often you'll encounter either long lines and stations being shut down, which usually leads to an unsatisfying experience. You can also you dining dollars at different places (see this http://www.pc.pitt.edu/dining/menus.php). This food is a little bit higher quality than the dining halls. Another thing to note about the on campus food is that it seems to close pretty early. Most things start closing around 7:00, and by 9:00, your only option is to go to one of the dining halls, and most of the stations are shut down there, so you're limited to like cereal, hamburgers and pizza. This can be frustrating as a college student with a late sleep schedule.
While the on campus food is average, the off campus food is pretty good. It's about a 10 minute walk to places like Chipotle, Qdoba, Five Guys, McDonalds, Subway, Quiznos, Noodles and Co., Panera, and some other local places (chinese, pizza, frozen yogurt...).
Regarding the dorms, they're also pretty standard. The freshman dorms tend to be kinda small with average at best quality. However, they're very social and a lot of fun (some can get pretty wild and loud). The biggest and most popular of these are Towers (A, B, and maybe C). One thing that adds to this is the fact that the towers are circular, and thus have circular hall ways. This may seem trivial, but it makes it so everyone is pretty close together, and you see more people in a circular hallway than you would in a standard long hallway. Most sophomore and juniors live in dorms that are quite different. These dorms tend to be less rowdy, bigger and nicer. Although you can still make friends and be social, it's much less so than freshman dorms. This is probably because freshman are all coming to school "alone" and looking to make friends, whereas sophomores and juniors are more "settled in" and might have a "friend group". This isn't to say that sophomores and juniors are antisocial. I myself, and many people I know, have made many new friends past their freshman years, it's just to a lesser extent than it was during freshman year.
The campus is often categorized as upper campus, and lower campus. Lower campus consists of two main roads (forbes and fifth) that run parallel to each other and have most of the main buildings and things you'll need. It's somewhat of an urban environment, but nothing like a major city (or even downtown Pittsburgh). Upper campus is more suburban, and has some athletic facilities/gyms and nicer dorms. The size of the campus is nice because there aren't many places that are longer then a 10-15 minute walk away. Also, busses run pretty frequently (every 5-15 minutes) along fifth avenue that you can ride for free with your panther card. Regarding the weather, it's fine, but the winter can be pretty touch sometimes. I guess it depends what you're expecting and what you're used to.
As a first semester freshman, I thought Pitt was way too big- I even seriously considered transferring. I came from a small high school where you knew everyone and his or her life story. Once I was at Pitt, I didn't recognize a single face, and that was terrifying to me. But once I came back after winter break, I was thrilled to be back. I almost felt more at home at Pitt than I did at my own home. The friends I had made first semester were popping up in my second semester classes, and as I saw more and more faces I recognized, I felt much more comfortable. I love the size of Pitt because I'm always meeting new people, but through my major and extracurricular activities, I always run into people I know.
I never cared much about sports- until I came to Pitt. Going to a Division I school is always an adventure. The football games are a blast and there is no where else quite like the Oakland Zoo (basketball). But if you're like most of the normal kids on campus, Pitt offers a variety of club and intramural sports, ranging from baseball and soccer to quidditch.
Every day the Pitt News prints thousands of copies of the daily campus newspaper which is distributed throughout campus. I try to get a copy every day- reading about events and campus news helps me stay knowledgable of the happenings on campus.
Pitt also offers a great variety of clubs and activities for every interest so that every student has the opportunity to get involved. Finding your niche helps create a family-esque feel, and as cliche as it sounds, finding an activity definitely enhances the college experience!
The school is pretty large, but since it's in an urban campus, it doesn't seem large. You can get anywhere on campus in about 5-8 minutes to walk. The best thing about Pitt is all the restaurants. We have Primanti Brothers, 5 Guys, The O, and much more. (If you don't know what any of those are, then you'll be in for quite a treat!)
I absolutely LOVE the University of Pittsburgh. At our school, we like to say that the "City is our campus". We can go anywhere in Allegheny County using public transportation for free with our Pitt ID, and that opens up a lot of opportunities for fun, internships, and experiences. Although our football team is not the greatest, the football games are still fun. We play at Heinz Field where the Steelers play, which is something that is very unique to our school - co-owning a stadium with a professional sports team! Our basketball team is consistently ranked as one of the best teams in the nation, and our school has an enormous amount of school pride when it comes to basketball. For big games, its nearly impossible to get tickets, because demand is so high (which is one thing I would change... we need a larger student seating section in the Petersen Events Center - also called "The Pete" around campus). The administration is very responsive to students needs, and they are constantly holding office hours and meetings trying to figure out what the students want. After change is implemented, the administration follows up on the changes to be sure its what the students wanted to see. I have been a tour guide at Pitt since my freshman year, and now I am in charge of recruiting, hiring and training new tour guides for our school. I am in LOVE with Pitt and am so happy to call myself a PITT PANTHER!
Overall, I love Pitt. It's not gigantic like Penn State, but it's large enough that there's always something going on and unlike in high school, you couldn't even know everyone if you tried. One optimum thing about Pitt is it's location - it's in the city of Pittsburgh, in a neighborhood called Oakland which is so bustling that it's often labelled as a "second downtown" - but the school is located 3 or 4 miles from actual downtown, so it's in a much safter / less-sketchy area. Pitt's campus is essentially integrated into the surrounding city. I hear horror stories of friends at tiny colleges in the middle of nowhere who get sick of their dining hall food within a week - but there are so many restaurants within just a five-minute walk from the main academic buildings that I never have that problem! There's also so much to do, and the rest of the city of Pittsburgh is easily accessible because students get free bus transportation.
There is a lot of Pitt pride among students, and this tends to be greater in those students who like sports more. In fact, one experience that I'll always remember has to do with Pitt pride - at our football games, there's a tradition of putting our arms around each other and singing our own special version of "Sweet Caroline" - that song has come to embody everything I love about the school.
Something unusual about Pitt is that we have a 40-floor building called the Cathedral of Learning. Inside, it looks like scenery from Harry Potter. It houses a bunch of academic departments and classrooms. Some of the classrooms, "nationality rooms," are actually decorated and themed for different countries. It makes sitting in class a lot more interesting!
One negative thing about our school's administration is that they're not very accessible. They're helpful enough and easy enough to find if you have general questions about things, like how to pay a bill or register for classes, but if you want to be more engaged as a student and actually propose major changes on campus or policy changes, it is hard to access any administration. It is essentially impossible to communicate with or access upper-level administration. One thing I'd change about Pitt is to have it be one of those schools where the President (or in our case, Chancellor) is known to interact with students on a daily basis.
Pitt has an awesome sense of community pride. The academics are solid in most departments, the size is great if you want a big school that's not TOO enormous, and the campus is beautiful. It's not a traditional campus, but it's made up of modern and Neo-Gothic architecture surrounded by parks, green space, statues and hills. If you're into the city life, you'll love Pitt. Oakland has a lot of character (you'll meet some weird people here and there), but to be honest it's a pretty normal urban environment with plenty of places to eat and explore. Free bus passes, museum access and student discounts make for great excursions. People are very involved on campus and serious about the many, many clubs here. Basketball games are awesome, people love the sports teams pride is all over Oakland.
Some people complain about the weather, but honestly, it's not much rainier than the rest of the east coast.
I must say first off that I love the University of Pittsburgh. The reasons are simple, I live close to home, I love the city of Pittsburgh (it's truly unique), and the people are extremely nice.
The hot spots to study on campus vary because there are many depending on what kind of environment you are looking for. I like the Hillman library it has every resource you might need including, books, magazines, newspapers, computers, and of course beautiful girls who love to study.
School pride is huge here. We have the Pitt Panthers basketball team which is currently 16-0 and #1 in the nation. Students can go to the games for 5$, it's truly amazing.
Pitt also has that mixture of large lectures for those of you who want to stay below the radar, and smaller classes for upper level courses for those of you who like to participate and really get involved. The teachers, just like in any school, are good and bad. I have had my fair share of teachers who drive me crazy along with teachers I still speak to regularly and look to for professional advice.
All in all, Pitt is an awesome university and I have had some amazing experiences in and out of the classroom.
One of the things I complained about most as a student was the lack of green space. Pitt is missing the big grassy quads that are in all of the movie college campuses. This was partially offset by the fact that at all times, you are within a 20 minute bus ride from downtown. Bus fare is included in tuition, so students essentially ride the buses for "free." It was nice to be able to go to the symphony, ballet, or a play as a student.
Since the school is so big, it can offer tons of interesting classes. We used to joke about taking underwater basket weaving. I did however, take both judo and skiing for credit. The school is also not so big that all of your classes have 100+ people. I had quite a few classes after my first year that were under 10 people.
Since graduating with a B.A., I have returned to Pitt for my law degree. One of my continued complaints is with the career services department. My mom said the same thing about the M.B.A. program. You just can't count on the school finding you a good job after graduation. You'll have to do that yourself.
Everyone is miserable at Pitt. Even the name is ugly.
I don't know if this because of the miserable weather, the dangerous gritty urban milieu, or the constant stress of everyone wondering, "How the hell do I get out of Pittsburgh?"
When I tell people I go to Pitt, they usually hear Penn. After I explain to them that I do not in fact go to in Ivy league school but I attend a state school in the western part of PA they give me a sort of uncomfortable look, one that encompasses the movement from loooking excited for me all the way to a look of question because they have never heard of Pittsburgh. I was just abroad for a semester in Israel, where most of the people were only familiar with the really big cities in the US like NYC and L.A. But one great thing about Pitt is that they encourage you to study abroad from the moment you begin your career as a freshman. You are hardly there for 2 weeks before they are telling you to leave the country! But studying abroad is one of the best experiences a student can undertake.
Pitt's a larger school; but I never feel neglected by my professors. Being as "the city is [Pitt's] campus", there are a wide range of activities and opportunities available.
Pitt is a very prestigous school. It has very large class sizes, and is somewhat hard to adjust to from high school. The professors are very nice and are always there to help with anything. There is also many oppurtunities for academic help all over the campus. The administration at Pitt is very helpful and kind. Pitt has a lot of extracurricular activities that it offers and are great oppurtunities. One thing that Pitt has is school pride. There is a very big fan basis for all of the sporting events, and Pitt students love their school. It is a great university, and I would reccomend it to everyone.
Pitt is a great city school with a lot to do in a fairly safe environment. The university provides great opportunities to succeed and explore new things. Pitt also brings in a lot of big name bands for entertainment and interesting people to speak and entertain, like politicians and hypnotists.
There is really no campus at Pitt but if you are a city person its wonderful! It does get really cold here and is overcast a lot, it also rains a lot. And unfortunately the sidewalks never really get cleaned so they become dirty slushwalks. This makes it really miserable walking to parties during the winter, but if you party hard enough you won't care too much about the walk back! However, the lack of good weather forces you to study because you defintely don't want to be outside!
I loved going to school here. The architecture and grounds are amazing, despite it being an urban location. People from all across the state, and the nation, come to Pitt. We actually have applicants from all 50 states!
Everyone here was eager to help you succeed. The school offers almost any extra-curricular activity or student organization you can think of...and people get involved. Most of the students here engage themselves well, but there's always room for new faces and ideas.
I lived off campus and rode the bus everywhere (you get to ride all public transportation for free with a vaild ID). Parking is a problem across campus. Space is extremely tight and permits are expensive.
The student government board (SGB) is trying hard to rejuvinate school spirit. It seems to have been swept under the table lately...who knows why. I love this school and proud to be graduating this year.
Pitt DOES NOT CARE about its students. Pitt cares about UPMC and making as much money as possible. If you come here, be prepared to be lost in a bureaucratic mess, and if you need any help- none will be made available. Though some of the teachers here are excellent; the vast majority are either horrible, non-English speakers (yes, thats right, you'll be taught math by someone with a hand-held translator) or so old that any information they teach is worthless in contemporary society. Everything on campus (including food) is incredibly over-priced. To eat well and go to Pitt is an expensive endeavor. The campus is incredibly crowded, and to make matters worse- Pitt loves to give tours so expect there to be a decent number of non-students roaming the halls of school buildings (especially the Cathedral of Learning).
Most Pitt students live in the surrounding city borough known as Oakland. Oakland is a ghetto, in case that has not been made clear. The homes and buildings are in a state of decay, and many students find that their apartment/house has been foreclosed and they are thrown out into the streets. There is NO PARKING in Oakland....well there is, but good luck finding a spot. Once you do find a spot, odds are the next day you'll find a $45 parking ticket. Oakland is also very LOUD, so don't expect to be able to study in a quiet environment.
Oakland is also DANGEROUS. Students get jumped, robbed and held up on a weekly basis. Gunshots are as regular as police sirens, helicopters, and ambulances. And watch out for those city buses- at least one student a year gets run down.
It's a great campus. Plenty of opportunities on campus and in the community. Pittsburgh is a unique city because the colleges are what really make it what it is. Oakland is basically a college town comprising of a few colleges, but dominated by Pitt. In comparison to some NJ schools I've seen it is definitely not a suitcase college. Also, unlike WVU you do not have to take a bus to get everywhere fun or to get to downtown.
When you become 21 Pitt has an awesome bar scene. It is a city that is recovering from the steel industry collapse, but is wisely investing in future technologies and is on the cutting edge for environmental standards. Pitt students get free city bus transportation for when they want to visit downtown, which is remarkably clean. Pittsburgh is a nice city, but feels like a small town. Especially if you are coming from the East Coast.
There is a lot of school pride and the Greek Life is also active. I am involved in the Pi Kappa Fraternity which like others, can dominate some aspects of the school. However, the school does not huge mansions like Penn State and other colleges, so non-Greeks do not feel left out if they choose not to join. Also the Living Communities make excellent areas of learning for some students.
My one personal compliant is how it is hard to change a mistake in your schedule or fix a mistake in financial aid. Sometimes you have to make 3-4 appointments with different people in order to get what you need. This is because its a big school and not every school employee knows all aspects for everything. The other concern is that it gets very cold and windy in the winter. This past winter it snowed every day almost. So bring a pair of boots. However, it gets real hot in the fall and warms up quickly in the spring.
Also you get out before any other school I know. (As early as April 20)... and without going in excessively early. (You go in around August 20). Some of your breaks are just shorter, but it is well worth it for a long summer break.
Pitt is in a city, it isn't out in the middle of nowhere. There is so much to do, especially for non-drinkers. The huge college stereotype is that everybody drinks, but at Pitt there is a lot more to do. There are so many school sponsored events as well as events and shows going on throughout the city at any time.
The big picture of Pitt... Geez, I'm not sure I know. Your big picture is going to be different from my big picture. I'm a simple guy; I go to classes, work out with friends a couple times per week, go to a club meeting or two, and enjoy the weekend.
Let's try to answer some of the standard questions:
- most time spent on campus: around the Cathedral; lots of classes are in or within a block of there
- Is Pittsburgh a college town? No. Pittsburgh is a city. You go to college in that city.
- School pride? Only during basketball season. There are a lot of apathetic football fans, which is disappointing. However, you'll see about 30-40% of your classmates wearing assorted Pitt gear every day.
Pitt has a great atmosphere, for a large school, it's hard to feel lost among the crowd. Professors can get to know you, if you want them to, that is, and its not hard to stand out if you try.
Oakland, where the campus is located is kind of run down, but it has a good flavor to it, sort of a good place to mature. there are bums and crime, sometimes i can hear gunshots at night, but its also fairly safe, as long as you're not stupid. but there's lots of good coffee shops and restaurants, making it easy for a chill time or to take someone on a date.
there is a good deal of school pride, especially during basketball season, due to our excellent team over the past few years. there's also a lot of pittsburgh pride, especially for the penguins (our hockey team), but no one gives you too hard a time if you're a fan of some other team, especially from philly or ohio.
The best thing about Pitt is that UPMC is providing some money for me to go to school. Other than this, I will receive a raise at work after completing my Master's degree.
When I tell people I go to Pitt, they say 'oh'. Not really much of a respose...
The only school pride is in their basketball....when they are good. When their sports teams are not good, they talk badly about them.
I can honestly say I did not have a great experience here. Administration for my program sucked, and they are not very organized at all. It is in the middle of the city, and I do not like when the homeless people would ask me for money after getting done with a class.
Best thing- many hospitals which allow for research, internships, and volunteer experience.
It is a huge school which is awesome because there are so many students.
I spend a lot of time studying at Hillman Library and in the Cathedral of Learning.
People love Pitt- everyone loves it and I LOVE IT SO MUCH.
I will always remember when the Steelers won the Super Bowl (for the 5th time) freshman year because everyone was going crazy and they had to close down the streets in Oakland because everyone was being crazy outside.
The best thing about Pitt is the level of diversity we maintain. The student body, itself, is culturally, racially, economically and religiously diverse. The majors, courses, and honors programs offered are diverse. Also, the amount of volunteer, research, extracurricular, leadership and social opportunities are incredibly diverse. You can do anything and be anything that you would ever chose to at Pitt! Every day is like a new adventure, packed full with possibilities. For once, I feel as if my dreams are completely within my grasp.
I have never been a sports aficionado, fanatic or even devoted fan, but after coming to Pitt, I have been completely transformed! I now religiously follow Panther football, basketball and lacrosse and support the Steelers. There is such a shared pride and community when attending sports events that I never imagined I would enjoy so much! There is nothing like a packed stadium full of screaming, united fans to get the blood rushing and the school spirit flowing.
Something I will never forget about my freshman year is the incredible sense of friendship and community I found within my very own residence hall, Tower B. I think I had friends on every floor! The ability to just walk up a few flights of stairs to talk for hours about anything and everything with a diverse group of supportive friends was immeasurably life-changing. When I began at Pitt, I knew not a single person. Now, having completed my freshman year, I have friends from classes, activities, living quarters and best of all, a group of seven incredibly supportive and close friends with which I know I will never part. There is nothing like that feeling of complete and supportive solidarity to make one feel that college is, perhaps, the happiest place on earth.
Pitt has a wonderful city life atmosphere that makes even the most mundane days exciting. There is never a dull moment at Pitt and having the city and professional sports team so close by makes every season exciting.
The best thing about Pitt has to be the buses and you're location. It's hard to run out of things to do since the buses will take you anywhere and you ride for free. Sometimes it does suck having all of these great restaurants but no money to eat at them. And since I live a few hours from WVU, lets just say people's reaction to my going to Pitt isn't always thrilled.
Pitt is the ideal place for me. The people are friendly. I am in a city setting. The school isn't too big or too small. I see a new face everyday. Most of the time I am either with my friends working on homework or in my room alone studying. Pitt athletics are very entertaining. The most memorable day of my freshman year was when the basketball team upset No. 6 Georgetown.
One think I would change is lack of unity. Sure, we have the cathedral but other than that if you were to meet someone who goes to Pitt you would have no shared experiences besides being in the same few square miles. The school's size is perfect; class sizes range from 10-200. The worst part about Pitt is the assumptions people make about you as soon as you tell them what school you go to. I've found that we're viewed over all as average or slightly below average. There is no "college town" for Pitt; if you walk down the streets of our campus 80-90% of the people you see do NOT go to your school. This, again, results in a lack of unity. There's not much school spirit except among the few people that go to basketball and football games. A portion is actually anti-school spirit which is a downer for the rest of us. The administration is actually above par. I don't think I've heard of any controversy or great tension between students and administration. The school is very well run and they certainly keep us happy.
i was a non-traditional student at pitt, so i didn't live on campus, didn't attend the whole four years. started at penn state and then finished at pitt. from starting at psu, i had the impression that pitt's academics were not so hot. i soon found out that my impression was entirely wrong. the professors that i had for my english classes were amazing, and the professors i had for my gen ed classes were also just as amazing. perhaps it is because i am older now and had a more focused mindset, but i felt that i learned more from my classes at pitt than i did when i first started my undergraduate career. campus is nice, city campus, so one has to be comfortable with traffic, homeless people, and general mayhem during busy times (which is nearly all of the time in oakland). my only complaint is that hillman library becomes a bit of a night club after 6pm, and if you're looking for a quite place to study, the library is not the place to go in the evenings.
In all honesty, Pitt is large enough to have a very diverse student body. You can be involved in sports, politics, music or anything else you can think of, and find a group of people with similar interests. So we are big enough to have the resources yet the many classes are small enough so you can "get to know your professors" like all of you small college goes love to do.
Pitt is a great school. It's in the city, but it's not too much in the city.
Pitt is very diverse, but people to tend to segregate themselves based on race. But you will be exposed to people from all over and learn how to get along- so that is very important in this world. You also learn a lot from how other people live in other places & you can be more open of a person if you let yourself- but you have to do that. There are a lot of clubs to be involved with & many activities to do so you don't have to just party. There are parties of all types if that is what you do. You learn lots of political things & keep up to date on environmental & social injustice issues.
Well I go to a branch campus of Pitt which I feel is really helpful to the type of student that I am. I know at our campus there is a lot more hands on with teachers and almost all of the time your teachers are always there to help you. I think that when I tell people I go to Pitt they look at me with high standards, meaning like it's a very good school to attend so the person I am speaking to is impressed by what they hear. I don't really hear many student complaints which I think is tremendous. As far as school pride goes that is one thing I am very proud of. Even being on a branch campus I still feel so involved with all the major Pitt activities.
Pitt is great, because it is in a fun part of town. There are things to do at all hours of the night for the most part (food, parties, etc.) It is a big school, but once you get involved in things and make friends the campus doesn't seem that big anymore. I see people I know all the time! While Pitt is a great school and a safe campus, it is still a city, and living off campus isn't exactly safe. But the off campus living is generally highly populated with students and is pretty safe during the daytime. I've only known one person that came to pitt and didn't like it - so people are pretty satisfied with it. And the food is actually really good! Most of my college friends complain that the food on their campus is poisoned or something it's so bad, but the main food place on campus is better than the food I get at home. Pitt is all around a great school and I love it so much. I would recommend it to everyone.
In so far as the atmosphere of Pitt, the 'big picture', the feeling one gets from walking around campus, it is full of pride. I love the campus, because I like the urban setting, and I LOVE the fact that I am not in a 'college town' that there is a whole city, plenty of things other than just school going on everywhere around me. READ: Oakland is NOT New York City. It is a decently sized city, with lots of things to do, but it is not New York City. I've actually heard complaints that Pittsburgh is too small, or there's nothing to do. They usually come from people from New York or Philadelphia, meaning, they haven't taken the time to look around. There is a thriving arts scene. Whatever your tastes in music, art, food, name it, you can find it. But it won't be thrown in your face. Yes, you will have to explore. Exploring is easy too. Until I tried to get around other cities without a car, I never realized what a truly wonderful public transit system Pittsburgh has. And it's FREE. A student ID from Pitt= FREE buses. They really pushed that when I came on a tour when I was looking at schools. It didn't seem important at the time. IT IS HUGE. You cannot afford to park a car here. I don't care how rich you are, a car is a waste of money here. With the public transit system here, you do not need a car. The city life is wonderful, the whole urban ambiance, makes the Pitt experience so much more rich.
The best thing about Pitt is that it is in the city. You are not confined to just those in your school but yet it is easy to be around them. There are different areas of the city to go to if dirty Oakland isn't your vibe for the night. Also, although South Oakland is dirty and maybe alittle scary, there are amazing little stores and restaurants that people do not find out about until they move into South Oakland. Some good places to check out are the Indian place on S. Bouquet and the little Italian market on Bates Semple.
City of Pittsburgh: The city of Pittsburgh is certainly one of the more underrated cities which gets a bad rap as an old dirty steel city. That has changed drastically in the last 20 years and Pittsburgh is now a medical, financial and business center with the 5th most Fortune 500 companies in the USA. Pitt is wonderful because it is located in the city and you can acquire connections to extremely top-class corporations that all recruit here (PNC Bank, PPG, US Steel, Bayer, Dicks Sporting Goods, ect.) It is a wonderful school if you are a business/finance major.
School Size: About 16,000 but the business undergrad school is probably around 1,500 so you get to meet many people of your own major within the larger school.
Reputation: Pitt for the last decade has been drastically climbing in the school rankings and is now a Top 25 public university and Top 60 overall University. It is closely approaching schools like Michigan and Indiana, and by international rankings Pitt is Top 50 in the world and getting better every year. Admission has therefore been getting more selective on a yearly basis.
Athletics: A big attraction is that Pitt Basketball and Football are good year in and out. The school is more of a Basketball school and the Oakland Zoo (student section) is full almost every game since Pitt is a perennial Top 25 team. The Football team has seen some tough times lately even though we have had some great talent and the students are much more fair-weather-fans. Tailgating is always fun though!
I think Pitt is a good size - it's big enough to avoid people you don't want to see but still small enough to actually meet people. I love the campus because it's basically interspersed with all of the other Oakland buildings, but that is definitely a particular taste. It's not a secluded, collegiate area like CMU or some other private schools. I spend most of my time in the Cathedral because that's where all my classes are, and it's also where I do most of my homework and writing.
The only complaint I have is that the extracurricular clubs, etc. tend to be really cliquey.
Pitt is a great school, there is always something going on, from sports (pitt bball and football, steelers, pirates, penguins), clubs, city and school events, to parties. Best thing is Sundays during the fall, the city is alive with excitement about the stillers, their results has a profound impact on the city...
This school is a good mix of people from different cultures and backgrounds. You learn a lot and it's a great opportunity to step out of your own comfort zone. There are many good chances to do some really cool things (study abroad, join a club, etc.) if you put in the effort. Oakland caters to students very well. I do a lot of lifting, wrestling and grappling. I have a pretty close group of friends. There is a lot or pride come basketball season. I think Pitt's administration needs a lesson on how to connect to students. Overall, no one is going to do it for you, it takes YOU buckling down and getting it done.
I love Pitt because it's in the city. It always seems like the possibilities are endless if you find yourself with some spare time. It kinda sucks having security guards when you live in the dorms because they make you feel like you're a baby and often times they are more rude than nice. My favorite place to be is at the museums or at Phipps Conservatory. Both are quick walks from campus. There is a lot of Pitt Pride but if you're like me and think people are a little too crazy about sports, they are easy to avoid and it's always nice when almost everyone is at a basketball or football game because it feels like you have the entire campus to yourself.
I love the University of Pittsburgh. I transferred here my sophomore year from a very small, Catholic college in Erie, PA. What I found most attractive was the size of the campus and the amount of things to do. Not only does Pitt offer you a wide variety of extracurriculars and student activities, but Oakland is full of things to do, as well as the surrounding neighborhoods like the South Side, Squirrel Hill, and Downtown. When transferring I was nervous and anxious, but the administration really made my transition a smooth one. All of my credits transferred and my adviser was very friendly and made herself available to me for questions, even outside of registering/transferring my courses. Pitt offers students a good atmosphere, which is why I think students have such great pride in the school.
Pitt takes extremely good care of new students. There are always activities going on for freshmen and every step is taken to ensure the students are comfortable and even proud about their choice to go there.
One of the coolest things about going to school in Pittsburgh is how your student ID acts as a free bus pass. Pittsburgh is an exciting city with loads of things to do every day, so being able to get around easily for free is a huge advantage. The Pittsburgh bus system is pretty reliable and most, if not all, of the busses go through Pitt's campus quite frequently so getting around is never a problem.
It's kind of annoying how three of the best dorms on campus (Pennsylvania Hall, Panther Hall, and Sutherland Hall) are on upper campus. Upper campus is a huge pain to get to and from (it's all the way up "Cardiac Hill") especially if all your classes are on lower campus.
Living in the Litchfield Towers is the ultimate freshman experience at Pitt. The RAs are really cool and they plan fun activities for the residents every week. It's also pretty neat to live in a circular building where walking down your hallway means walking in a circle. The rooms really aren't that small compared to the freshman dorms at most schools. The only sucky things about Towers are the communal bathrooms and the weird elevator system which really screws you over if you're not on every third floor. But otherwise it's very convenient to live there because it's practically the center of activity on lower campus. Plus, you don't have to leave the building to get a good meal!
Market Central is the new dining establishment on the lower level of the Towers. For one ID swipe you get all-you-can-eat access to six different things--there's an pizza/pasta bar place, a sandwich place, a diner-style place, a stir-fry place, a vegetarian place, and an unpredictable place that is very random. When it first opened, Market Central was really good and everyone loved it--but they were all sick of it a few months later. By the end of the year, no one wanted to eat there anymore. But I guess that's true for any dining hall--boredom with the choices is inevitable, even if there are as many choices as at Market Central.
If you buy a computer right before you start at Pitt, don't buy any software for it--you can get it all here for free! It's a pretty sweet deal.
The Cathedral of Learning is a wonderful place. Chances are you'll have a bunch of classes there throughout your time at Pitt, and you might chose to study there too. It's a gorgeous piece of architecture that looks pretty on the outside in any kind of weather, and the inside is really cozy. The Cathedral is definitely my favorite building on Pitt's campus.
One of the most unique things about the University of Pittsburgh is that it is in a city; Oakland isn't just a college town, but the tallest building around is Pitt's own Cathedral of Learning. If you go out for lunch at Joe Mama's or The Red Oak Cafe, you'll see other students inside, but chances are you'll run into professionals in suits and scrubs on their lunchbreak, too. And there are plenty of activities and ways to be involved on campus, but there is so much else out there. Pittsburgh is incredibly diverse with a unique history and culture, with nooks and crannies to find if you take a step outside campus borders. We have free access to public transit, so why not take advantage of that?
However, there's still a definite sense of community among the students; we still have dining halls exclusively for students and riots when our sports teams beat rivals, just like any other university.
Best thing is the student body, not the prettiest campus though
I really love this school, and in the past few years there has been a dramatic change in the students at the University. For some reason, the students seem to show more pride and togetherness than I have ever seen before. It may be due to the success of the basketball team, or the fact that we just have better students now, but the pride is becoming unbelieveable.
One of the bigger issues with Pitt is the bureaucracy that is implemented by the Administration, its practically impossible to organize any on campus event without filling out pages and pages of paper work, and a part of this issue is Pitt Police .
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