On the whole, I find that students here are kind, friendly, genuine, and down-to-earth. Students are intelligent and talented, but they lack the "elitist" attitude that people sometimes associate with top schools. It's so refreshing and it makes for a wonderful environment. You'll find people having both intellectual and goofy conversations - again, there's a really nicely-balanced vibe to the student body. People are genuinely interested in learning, and that makes for a great environement. There is a noticable LGBT presence on campus - not huge, but definitely there. Everyone I've met so far has been nothing but tolerant and supportive. People here typically come from a middle class/upper middle class background. There's a mix of everybody, though. Different racial/ethnic groups definitely interact with one another, though at times it does seem a bit segregated.
The U of R has some of the most attractive women I have ever seen, along with the men. Most people are open to all sorts of differences, I've only ever encountered one overtly zealous conservative Christian in my time here, she was a sweet heart but I knew she was probably not cool with some of my friends sexual preferences. Lots of different types of students interact, the only issues I've faced is some economic gaps many people here are from very wealthy families (Westchester, northern Jersey, Philly areas) and being from your typical middle class family its strange to me to hear of students getting $300 a month allowances (for what? who knows?) and not having to work. I think its a great experience to be friends with and interact with these people, for both of us, so we can see what different people live like in the world but some times I feel left out or resentful.
As an underrepresented minority coming from a predominantly (some say "overwhelmingly") Hispanic community, it certainly was a culture shock arriving in Rochester. But, there are many of services available for students to integrate themselves with the rest of the community. Unfortunately, the lack of racial/socioeconomic diversity on the campus creates a sense amongst many "minorities" that they're not understood. (I was one of those.) But I always felt that it had more to do with the fact that many students lacked contact with students from different backgrounds. There was rarely a lack of interaction between different groups. Being that Rochester is a (very expensive) private university, there are plenty of stereotypical spoiled "rich kids," but many more liberal-minded individuals with which one can connect. This, in the end, helped tremedously.
Rochester has a significant amount of diversity throughout the student population, at least in comparison to the small WASP farm town from which I came. There are student groups for almost any minority or religious group, and countless activity groups based on unique interests that one could make their home ground on campus. It is unfortunate that people of varying backgrounds do not often interact with each other and instead stick together, but there are always exceptions to the rule. Most Rochester students seem to be from upper-middle class to upper class families and have the expectation that they will end up in the same place. Once again, there are exceptions but the majority rule dictates that saving money is largely not an issue.
I find the majority of the kids come from middle class backgrounds. All of us depend on financial aid some people more than others but there is a social setting appropriate for all different backgrounds. There are a lot of kids from different countries and there are some who are from NY. Actually a lot from NY and Jersey and Pennsylvania. The students come from all different walks of life in terms of political views there are clubs for democrats and republicans but they are not really active on campus maybe for elections but that's all I have ever heard from them. The kids here live for the now with awareness of the future which I think is the best way to live.
We all have two thing in common: hardly on school spirit and tolerance. Anyone is welcome to learn about anyone's culture, though diversity is, as usual, a joke. Rochester is not a traditional university...everyone is an individual. There will be groups of people you'll encounter when partying, groups of people in classes who you study with...you usually recognize everyone, if not know them, and probably have heard a few embarrassing stories of who they made out with.
There isn't much diversity on campus, and different ethnic groups tend to stick to themselves. I don't think anyone would really feel out of place here because everyone has a certain place. I have heard a good amount of homophobia and racist remarks, but I know other people who are open and accepting of others. Mostly the kids dress similarly, fairly conservatory. There is a good range of students from the right to left.
The Rochester student body is like a gigantic family. You have your best friends who are like your immediate family, your acquaintances who are like the cousins you see during the holidays, and the people you walk by everyday and have no idea who they are. Those people are like your great uncle twice removed who lives across the country; you've never met him but you would do anything for him, because he's family.
There is a serious lack of diversity on campus. Students wear any assortment of things to class, but most commonly they are in general, very low matinence. The students are typically very driven in terms of knowing what they want for themselves in the future. The sports teams are very cliquey. It's not segregated along social lines per say, but students cannot be called warm, open, or welcoming in any way.
There is a broad mix of students at U of R. Since the school is pretty good about finacial aid, and both the liberal arts and sciences are strong here, there isn't really any more of one type of person than other types. Rochester is a pretty apolitical campus, which may be seen as a downside to some, but people tend to enjoy not being constantly harassed about political issues.