University of Puget Sound Top Questions

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?


Apply to at least three schools (one or more first choices and at least two safety's), and plan a campus tour and overnight visit at every college you get accepted to. The overnight visit will give you a much more thorough idea of what the school is really like than just touring the school on your own. You may think a school looks good on paper and has a pretty campus, but you never really know what it will be like until you spend some time there with enrolled students. An overnight visit could suprise you - you could realize you don't actually like your first choice school, or you could fall in love with a school that wasn't originally your first choice. Just keep an open mind and try to experience as much as you can when you visit your prospective universities. Also be sure to ask a lot of questions about what it's like to attend the school when you visit., even if it's just what the food is like, or what there is to do on weekends. The little things are what you'll grow to love about the school you choose.


Visit different colleges, see which types you fit best into. Figure out how you learn best; small classes, big classes? Are you motivated, if not a large campus may not be the best fit. It's easy to get lost in everything. Also, start thinking about majors, small colleges may not offer everything you want.


Look for a college that you can call home for the next several years. Embrace the community and the surroundings that the college has to offer and don't be afraid to explore! College is about growth and the right campus environment can positively impact who you will become in the future. Once at college, take advantage of the opportunites provided for you. Talk to professors and older students about what activities or events you could participate in. Quality friendships come naturally when you surround yourself with activities that correlate with your interests. When I was a freshman I was placed in an all-girls dorm with girls I seemingly didn't have anything in common with. I thought my social life depended on those people until I started becoming more active in the academic departments. That spring semester I made great friends which I am still friends with now, plus we have shared interests including similar favorite hangouts in the city surrounding my college. Remember to have fun and work hard, and to make the most of the opportunities presented to you!


I would say go with your gut instinct. I really like another school better than UPS but it was in Seattle, and I was woried that I would spend all my time hanging out in the city, so I turned it down. I look back and think, there is so much time in college to do everything, I wish I had gone there because I think it was a way better fit for me. Also, if you're unhappy at your school, there is no shame in transferring. You're 18, it's ok so say, I made a mistake, I need to move on. I performed amazingly academically and have a better job than anyone I know who graduated with me, but I also disliked college more than anyone else. I would gladly go back and make a change after my freshman year, even if it meant I was somewhere else, doing something else now.


Shop around and visit as many schools as you possibly can. It it amazing how helpful it can be to visit even schools that you aren;t interested in because you come to learn what you really want and don't want by seeing it first hand. Also, think about and ask the questions you have so you know better what to expect when you choose a school.


Find one that you feel at home at... If you don't youll end up hating it, quickly!


In my experience, finding the right college is all about first impression. If a college has a solid academic background and has the fields that you are interested in, then the feel of the campus is the most important thing. When you walk onto a campus, it should be love at first sight. A perspective student should feel comfortable in the environment and around the students at the college. Instinct can be the most important thing when finding the right college. Once you have arrived at the college of your choice, break out of your shell. In order to have a positive experience it is important to meet new people who will expand your social and emotional horizons, as well as push you towards a dynamic and challenging academic future. The most critical thing about finding the right school, and having a postive college experience, is to be come an individual, and discover what makes you who you are. Finding a school that can facilitate self discovery and academically challenge you, or your student, as an individual will be the right place for you.


Don't pick a school because of the price, or the prestige. And whatever you do, do not pick a school because your boy/girlfriend is going there. Most pre-university relationships end within the first semester, so find a better reason. The college experience is one of personal growth and confidence, so find a school that really fits exactly what you are looking for: class size, professor ratio, campus ambience, location, majors, and travel opportunities. Don't be afraid to take a chance, to go somewhere new and different, you might discover something about yourself. College is a chance to take risks in your life, to travel, to take weird classes, to make friends and stay up all night talking for no reason at all. Spend at least one year living in the dorms, you will meet a lot of people, make a lot of friends, and experience living without your parents and their rules. Join a lot of clubs/groups/teams, they will give you something to do besides homework and also let you meet more people who share similar interests. The best advice I can give is take risks, be smart and do your homework.


Apply to schools close to and far from home and make visits. They can be kind of awkward, but visits are good to get a feel for whether you'll fit into the community. Choosing a school also indirectly means you'll likely be choosing your best friends and a spouse. So have fun! Pressure's on!


If at all possible, the first step is to visit the campus in person. Do the students seem happy and engaged? Can you picture yourself calling this place home for the next few years? For me, atmosphere turned out to be a surprisingly important part of my overall sense of belonging at my school. Stepping out each day onto my beautiful campus gives me that extra bit of inspiration and a positive outlook (things that can suffer on those workload-heavy weeks!). Once you're there, find a balance: stay on top of your classes, but leave time to enjoy college life. Find friends who like to do the same things you do - if Frat parties sound about as fun as a root canal, go explore clubs (or start your own!) for rock climbing, or salsa dancing, or sitting by the fireplace and reading good books. College doesn't have to be "Animal House" or an extension of high school - use it to find out as much about yourself as you can. Discovering what you want to contribute to the world starts with discovering what inspires you.


I have two main pieces of advice... First: visit! If you have the means to do so, you must visit the campuses you're thinking about attending. You won't really know how you will feel about a school until you have experienced it. If the schools you are applying to offer an overnight stay, take it! I visited the top three schools on my list and stayed overnight at one. That one ended up being my first choice. Attend classes in a few different fields. It sounds boring, but it can give you such a good perspective on the character of a school and its students. Second: I strongly encourage students to look for a school that fits your character rather than your ambitions. Most of us, while we may think we know what we want to do (or what we want our children to do) at this time, really have no idea what's out there. Take your time and really think about what kind of people you want to be surrounded by and how much contact you want with your professors. Pick a school that will open new doors, not just show you through old ones!


I believe that in order to find the right college, a student must do quite a bit of research in order to get a better idea of if that college is right for him/her. I also think that it is important to visit the colleges that a student has applied to and decided that they may want to attend there. It will give them such a better sense of what the campus feels like rather than seeing pictures from brochures or the web. The students will also be able to better understand the kind of student body present at each college if they visit. To make the most out of the college experience I think you should get involved with some extra curricular that maybe you've never tried before. Or make some study groups with classmates. These things will help you become immersed into campus life and you'll meet some great people that may become your best friends down the road.


One of the biggest things to consider is where you'll be spending most of your next three years. Make sure its someplace you will enjoy BEING! You will begin to learn more about yourself then you thought you knew. If you cannot stand the sight of the place you live, or the company of the people there, i doesnt matter how good an education you're getting, you'll be miserable, and yes, it will effect your grades. Make sure the school has a learning philosophy that fits your own, and you'll be successful.


I would visit every campus that I apply to and try to see myself walking around that campus as a student. I would choose whichever college FEELS the best to me.


Definately visit the campus of the colleges you are interested in. This helps you experience the vibe that the college has, see the food you would be eating, etc. I would also suggest not attending a place just because your friends are all going. You will make new ones, and there is a good chance that the college won't fit your needs/wants. Participate in social groups while you're attending college, whether its a fraternity/sorority, or just a movie night, this will help you get involved with the school, and will provide friends and a support system.


The most important aspect of deciding on a college is making sure to visit. I made sure to visit my top two choices, and after visiting these schools, it allowed me to clearly make my decision. Many of my friends chose a school without visiting, and had no idea what kind of school that they were going to attend. Some of these people have been disappointed by their choice. Visiting a campus allows you to see exactly what the school looks like, allowing you to visualize yourself at the university, and decide if you are happy with that visualization. The best way to make the most of your college experience is to remember that class is only one third of your college experience. Often time?s people focus explicitly on class. And while class is important, your social activities and friends are an integral part of enjoying college. Also important is participating in extracurricular activities. By going to class, having a vibrant social life, and partaking in extracurricular activities, you will be able to maximize your college experience. If you only have one of the three, college will seem similar to high school, and college is much more fun!


Don't worry about cost when you are picking what school to apply to, financial aid is amazing and can give you opportunities you never dreamed of. When you get to school stay active, take activity classes in addition to the academic, these classes will give you a placed to relieve stress and have fun!


Reflecting back upon my college search, I realize that as a high school student, I hadn't conducted the best research on my potential home. Although I was unprepared to attend what is and will serve as my home for the next three years- the University of Puget Sound (UPS), I understood that hard work is all I need to be successful. In general, I believe that overall demographics draws a student to their selected school(s). Once there, it is the student's job to perform at their best potential to achieve success. For example, I have found that many aspects about UPS (both beneficial and not) go into my overall happiness. Just as it is in the real-world- essentially what we attend in college to prepare for, I have learned how to adapt and know to not let the negative aspects deter me from my goal of graduating. My advice to potential college-bound students and their families, on how to make the most out of their college experience- based on my own, would be to embrace every opportunity in the present, as it is the ultimate indicator of how you will perform in the future.


Do your best to find the right school, but remember, it's not an end all be all decision that will influence the rest of your life all that strongly.


Finding the right college can be a daunting task. The best advice I can give would be to pay as little attention to labels as possible. Harvard is lovely, but if it doesn't feel right that's okay. You don't have to go to Harvard. In fact, you may even be 100 times better off somewher else. I suggest taking some time to explore the campus of your choice on your own. Really get a feel for the "vibe" of the university, and take frequent stock of how you feel. Does this campus inspire you, or does it make you feel competitive and stressed? Can you see yourself sitting in the cafe chatting to those students with stacks of Russian literature around them? Chances are you'll tour enoug hcmapusses that they'll all start to look the same. What won't be the same is how each campus makes you feel. Find the school that inspires and makes you feel the most comfortable and stick with it. It may not be Harvard or Yale, but it will be the school for you. Most of all, remember to breath and have some fun. Good luck!


Once you get to college know that things are not going to be like what you expected. The most important thing to know is that that is OK. Accept this and it will make that transition into your new life much easier. In addition your social life at college is like an investment. The more you put into it the more you will get out of it. So get involved. Find clubs and activities to be a part of. If this means take a risk and trying new things even if you are afraid you won't be very good at it do it anyway. Everyone else is in the same boat. Many new students want to get settled into schoolwork before they do this. But you should start off the year by getting involved. If not you will fall into the same routine and it will be much harder to do this. While partying can be fun this is not the best way to really feel like a part of things. You may know a lot of people but it is unlikely that you will develop fulfilling relationships.


While money may be an important aspect, don't forget to way your emotions and gut feelings.