Vermillion, SD
University of South Dakota


107 Ratings

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Recent Reviews

Matthew
What is your overall opinion of this school?

My overall opinion of USD is very positive. It is a campus of opportunities. This is one of its best qualities. However, I mu...

What is your overall opinion of this school?

My overall opinion of USD is very positive. It is a campus of opportunities. This is one of its best qualities. However, I must admit that the school sometimes seems small. When other students from different schools visit, they seem to be surprised at just how small the town is. Some like it, some do not. Being from a small town originally, I have always been accustomed to a small population. I believe that it is the student who can make the best of their own situation. When I tell people that I attend USD, they usually are welcoming to the idea. They will usually respond with a tale about D-Days (our homecoming), or a friend they know who also attends. Many students who attend SDSU come down for a visit for our friendly atmosphere. Campus activities are very numerous. One of our best attractions would have to be our new Wellness Center. It includes basketball courts, an indoor track, raquetball, and a very large rock wall. Also on campus, there is the MUC in the center of it all. The MUC holds tons of activities such as dances, movie screenings, and much more. It is nice that everything is in walking distance as well. There is two movie theaters downtown and the bars downtown have karaoke, where all are welcome. Like any school, USD does have some flaws. The biggest one is the lack of school spirit. We have some, but when it comes to football games there are more parents than students. It is a little upsetting. Those who are there usually leave around the end of the first quarter. I believe it is just a lack of students. That is what students complain most about. They claim that our football games stink, but I think otherwise. The Coyotes are a very good team. The other complaint that we get is we do not have enough entertainment. The students are looking for big names to come to town. We have had Mac Miller, Doug Benson, and One Republic. In my opinion, those are pretty big names for a smaller school. Finally, one experience that I will always remember is my first day of college. I remember being thrown into a mix of friendly chaos. The move-in students were so inviting that is was easy to feel comfortable. After getting moved in, the activities began. In a mere few hours I was able to make some of my best friends. It was all because of the structure of USD. They had it planned out so we could be comfortable and still have opportunites to meet new people. I was exhausted by the end of it. Our day was packed full of things to do. There were bouncy castles, pizza, a bonfire, a magician, and that was just the second half of the day. It was a really comforting experience. Leaving home did not seem like a daunting task anymore.

Describe the students at your school.

Students at USD are very diverse. There are students from many different nations that have come to USD. As far as race, religion, LGBT, and socio-economic groups there is not a lot to talk about besides that there are clubs for each. Whatever a student has interest in, there are others. There is not many students who would feel out of place. Maybe if the students wanted to be completely sheltered and left alone. South Dakota is a friendly and accepting state, and we practice it everywhere. The students wear whatever they want to class. Students could show up in a garbage can and probably would not be questioned about it. If they feel comfortable, why bother them? If anyone would walk into the dining hall and look at four tables, they would not see anything out of the ordinary. Everyone would be in USD t-shirts and would be wearing sweatpants or gym shorts. They would most likely be talking to each other from table to table. Like I said, USD is a very close community of students. Most of the students are middle class individuals from around either South Dakota or the neighboring states. Excluding the certain clubs dedicated to government, I do not usually hear about student's political beliefs. This could be because they are unaware, or it could be that they do not want to push their values on others. Either way, I think students are mostly in the center.

What are the academics like at your school?

The academics are pretty good. Since USD has a smaller population, the classes are smaller. Every one of my professors knows my name. When taking generals, time seems to drag one. It is not the professors fault, it is just a little hill that has to be overcome. It really gets exciting when you take classes that go towards your major. I have had the most fun sitting in my American Literature class. The professor is great, and he makes learning the stuff very interesting. He loves taking people under his wing and giving them advice. I think that makes learning not only easier, but compelling to the student. I have spent a lot of time with my professors outside of class. One of which I play poker with every now and then. I have also been invited to dinner a few times as well. The academic atmosphere is warm and inviting. As far as studying goes, there is a lot of it. The library always has a good number of students in it. You would think with all this studying that there would be a lot of participation in the classroom, but this is not the case. Unless there are students who are very interested in the subject matter, the class roomroom usually stays pretty quiet. Competition does not exist at USD when it comes to grades. Whatever the pace a student decides to go at is acceptable to other students. The requirements are not rigid at all. The school mostly steers students towards a job and the success rate is huge.

What is the stereotype of students at your school? Is this stereotype accurate?

Here at USD, we have the typical stereotypes that are universal at all colleges. Students do not have to be segregated to one group of course. I have met many students who are genuine people even though I may not have wanted to hang out with them prior to college. The overall feel of the campus is a close knit community. It is hard to walk around the courtyard without saying hello to someone that you know. If I were to summarize the general population, I would have to say average. However, this is not a negative attribute. It is just a wholesome community of students who do not practice a social ladder of any kind.

Ryan
What is your overall opinion of this school?

To be fair I haven't gone to any other schools, but I love it at the University of South Dakota. The professors are great and...

What is your overall opinion of this school?

To be fair I haven't gone to any other schools, but I love it at the University of South Dakota. The professors are great and are very sociable and easy to talk to. I highly recommend getting to know your professors because it helps to connect yourself to the class. It makes learning and accepting the information being taught to you easier to grasp. Not only that, but the campus is of good size with decent facilities and many fun places that are also good for studying and meeting friends when needed.

Maggie
What is your overall opinion of this school?

I believe the University of South Dakota's most valuable asset is its teaching staff. Every professor I have worked with is ...

What is your overall opinion of this school?

I believe the University of South Dakota's most valuable asset is its teaching staff. Every professor I have worked with is overtly excited to teach his or her subject to the students. Our highly qualified staff is always willing to write letters of recommendation, help with internship opportunities, or simply offer help on an assignment. The one thing I would change about USD is the weather in Vermillion. We tend to have very harsh winters, and no matter what the season, there is always wind in the air. I believe the school itself is a wonderful size. Upon hearing that I attend USD, most people simply ask if I like living in South Dakota. I absolutely love this state. The people are so friendly and warm. Vermillion itself is definitely a college town, as the majority of the jobs in the town are centered around the university. I spend much of my time at the Muenster University Center, or the MUC, which is the student union on campus. The MUC offers a convenience store, a coffee shop, numerous types of food in the cafeteria, and many places to lounge or work on homework. There is often entertainment in the MUC, ranging from movies to music to comedians. USD's administration is incredibly helpful to students of all majors. Recently, a sophomore at USD committed suicide. The action was tragic for every student at the school, and the administration has been terribly helpful in providing students with guidance and encouragement to help us through the terrible tragedy. There is so much school pride at USD. Our school was recently changed to Division I in athletics, which has helped our sports teams improve immensely and challenge themselves constantly. Dakota Days is our homecoming celebration, and we have people from all over the state come to help us celebrate as we cheer for the USD Coyotes football team. The only unusual thing about USD is the very small campus, which I love. Students can walk anywhere on campus in ten minutes, which is wonderful, particularly when the weather is bad. The only frequent student complaints are about finals and tuition rates. All students complain about these two parts of college, but USD has a very low tuition rate, so there is little room to complain.

Describe the students at your school.

Honestly, I cannot even answer the question about sizing students up. Everyone at this school is so accepting of others, that I have never seen anything more offensive than a good-natured joke between friends. The LGBT community is largely accepted, as USD is located in the liberal part of South Dakota; the school population is equally split between conservatives, liberals, and moderates. Students do not dress up for class necessarily, but many students make an effort to look decent.

What are the academics like at your school?

Every professor I have had knows my name. It's wonderful that the professors are so willing to know each of their students. My favorite class at USD was my Vietnam War in Film class. My class watched films based during the time of Vietnam, and I learned more about the war than I ever anticipated from my professor. I love watching films, and so having the opportunity to write papers about them was wonderful. My least favorite class was my Survey of Calculus class. This is because I have never liked math, and I had a difficult time with that class my freshman year. Students usually study a few days before exams. Class participation is usually quite high, but it honestly depends on the class and the instructor. Students do have intellectual conversations outside of class, which is wonderful. Students are averagely competitive with one another, but USD focus more on helping one another than trying to beat each other on exams. The most unique class I have taken was my freshman year as part of the Honors program. The class was called "Ideas in History," and our class focused on some of the major philosophical works throughout human history. Class discussion was very intense and interesting, as we were able to hear everyone's opinions and have mannered debates. I am an English education major, so I have the chance to work with both the English department and the School of Education. Professors in both schools are incredibly helpful, and I'm so grateful to be in both departments. I spend time with professors outside of class, because they are so keen to help me with any questions I may have. Since USD is a liberal arts school, it gives students the opportunity to take classes outside of their specified major, which I love. I did not, however, enjoy taking math classes, but I understand why it is important to do so.

What is the stereotype of students at your school? Is this stereotype accurate?

One of the most difficult stereotypes to dismiss from an outsider observing our student population is a lack of diversity and that our students are all "farm kids." The University of South Dakota is located in southeastern South Dakota, which is a daunting thought for someone who has always lived in a large city. The population of Vermillion is about 10,000, and many students are afraid that our student population is made up of students who have only lived on farms their whole lives. While some of our population is from the rural Midwest, we do have a lot of students who are from urban areas of Florida, New York, Texas, and California, to name a few. We have a student population consisting of Caucasians, African Americans, Native Americans, Asian Americans, and many who are not from the United States. Our population is incredibly talented and diverse.

Quinn
What is your overall opinion of this school?

Overall USD offers a nice balance between education and socialization. USD has many regionally recognized programs that will ...

What is your overall opinion of this school?

Overall USD offers a nice balance between education and socialization. USD has many regionally recognized programs that will enable student whether they're interested in graduate school or moving straight into the workforce. The campus is large enough to offer all the major amenities (workout facilities, new commons area, dormitories, excellent library and many computer labs) but small enough to navigate with relative ease. Athletics is an important part of the campus life but one is still free to involve themselves in varying degrees. The University has many fraternities and sororities if greek like is of interest to you, though greek life does not dominate the social scene. Overall USD is a very nice school, the weather can occasionally get you down but the faculty is great and there is quite a bit to do, whether it "partying" or one of USD's many other extracurriculars.

What is the stereotype of students at your school? Is this stereotype accurate?

The notion that USD is a "party school" is pervasive, both outside and within the university. USD very well may be a party school, as any college is or can be to some degree, but it is not simply or only a party school. USD also has a exceptional faculty, an advanced and expanding campus, and a capable and committed student body. In addition, USD offers a number of extracurricular programs like intramural sports, drama, language clubs, writing clubs, and myriad of others organizations tailored to the interest of students. Partying, as traditionally associated with college, does happen at USD but this partying isn't indicative of a lazy or unmotivated student body or a lax faculty. While it si true that some USD students will part, the larger and more important truth is that all students at USD will be given a broad and challenging education.

John
Describe your favorite campus traditions.

USD is best known for the quality education given to students and the many opportunities that will arise for a student. If yo...

Describe your favorite campus traditions.

USD is best known for the quality education given to students and the many opportunities that will arise for a student. If you have the drive and determination to be something great, USD is the right place to be. The faculty will challenge and open many doors for you. It will also prepare you for a successful future. I am sure glad a made the decision to come here.

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

First of all I would say that college is way different than high school. It is much more difficult. To do well in school you have to have good time management. There will be much more material and you will go over it a fast pace. You have to stay up-to-date on your work. A good way to help remember things is to go over your notes before and after class. Studying is a must for college and don't skip classes either. In addition to studying, you need to be social if you want to have to full, successful college experience. It's ok to get out and talk to people. Joining groups is a great way of meeting new people that have the same interests. Also, make good friends that won't take you away from your goals. Don't let your peers make you do things that make you unsure. Your friends should try to help you just as you should help others. Again, use your time wisely between studying and your social life. Don't let one take over the other. Make smart decisions so you can make your college experience successful.

What do you brag about most when you tell your friends about your school?

I would tell them that almost everybody is very friendly and polite. People strive to get better grades. We also have great division I athletics that are competitive. The faculty is very engaging and knows their stuff well. They will strive to give you the best possible opportunity to do well while still challenging you. There are many groups that one can participate in. There is a group out on campus that will fit your interests. We do have a great Medical School as well. The people at USD are wonderful and you will make life long friends there.

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

Get your licence now, it'll simplefy things later. Get a job, and try to save as much as possible. Do your scholarship hunt...

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

Get your licence now, it'll simplefy things later. Get a job, and try to save as much as possible. Do your scholarship hunting NOW. It's better to not have any time now than no money later. Most of all, just trust God and remember that His timing is perfect, even when it doesn't seem like He's doing anything.

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

If I could go back in time and talk to myself as a high school senior, know what I know now about the transition in college l...

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

If I could go back in time and talk to myself as a high school senior, know what I know now about the transition in college life, I would have made myself get a steady job and save every cent. College is expensive and scholarships are sometimes hard to win. I would've made myself buckle down and be really serious about bumping up my GPA so that I could qualify for a lot more scholarships. I definitely wouldn't have told myself to just have fun and enjoy the "senioritis". Senior year is not all about fun and games like we think when we're seniors. It should be all about college. Every minute I wasn't in school I would've been online looking up jobs and scholarships so that I wouldn't have to worry about it all last minute like I am now. I would've been sure to prepare myself for all the work transitioning into college takes. It takes alot of legwork that I didn't think it would. I wish I could go back in time to senior year sometimes.

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

Dear Self, Keep up the hard work because it all pays off in the end, and don't worry about small things. Being captain of the...

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

Dear Self, Keep up the hard work because it all pays off in the end, and don't worry about small things. Being captain of the tennis team, yearbook editor, senior class historian, a NHS member, and much more may feel like all the hard work isn’t' going to pay off, but the valuable time management, leadership, and organization skills you will learn will do nothing but help you adjust to college. It will also make you want to get involved in college organizations, which is a great way to make friends and network. Trying hard in high school may seem "overrated" or "uncool" to some people, but the grades you earn influence the scholarships you receive which will become very important to you once you realize that everything comes with a price, believe me. While being involved and getting good grades is important, you need to make sure you have fun, and don't worry about little things. In the end you wont remember that one bad quiz grade, but you will remember all the fun you had at homecoming and prom. All in all, you should work hard, but don't be afraid to have some fun.

What's the most frustrating thing about your school?

I have really enjoyed my school experience so far, and there are no things that have really frustrated me so far except for my finacial situation. Everything comes with a cost, and while my school is fairly affordable in comparison to many, I still do not have as much finacial freedom as I would like.

Amy
Describe the students at your school.

My classmates are generally hard-working and focused, but also very social.

Describe the students at your school.

My classmates are generally hard-working and focused, but also very social.

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

“Don’t look so surprised,” I tell the person staring at me, who happens to be myself. Myself, but one year younger, one year dumber. “I'd like to give you some advice.” “Okay,” she shrugs and listens, a rare occurrence. Meeting yourself, I suppose, would shock you into silence. “Don’t be an idiot.” The girl across from me laughs. “You have a lot of faith in yourself.” “Yeah,” I smirk. “But you don’t. Going to college - you’re worried about it. I know, I was there. Please, don’t force yourself to fit in with a certain group of people. You were made to stand out. You'll find some awesome friends in the coming year. Be yourself. Classes are important, but don’t forget about the most important thing. I know you’ve been doubting him a bit right now, but God knows what he’s doing. Trust him. Get your school work done, but don’t obsess over it. You’re smarter than you think - your grades will be fine. Remember what’s most important. Trust God.” “Trust God, work hard, be yourself?” the high school me repeats. I smile. “Now make the idea reality.”

What kind of person should attend this school?

To attend this school, a person should be willing to put in the effort in class, though they should also be sociable and want to make friends.

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

I have made so many friends through my experience. I have grown to be such an strong women, and to believe in what I believe ...

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

I have made so many friends through my experience. I have grown to be such an strong women, and to believe in what I believe in and to stand up for those things. College is something that everyone should try, its not for some people but the friends that you make, you will have forever. It really just makes you who you are, and makes you grow stronger from the inside out. I have made wonderful friends, and am growing so much closer to becoming an intensive care nurse someday. The most valuable thing is that I am getting my education, and I am getting closer with every class I take.

What's unique about your campus?

I really like all of the organization that they have. It really got me involved in alot of different sports and organizations I never thought I would have. I got involved in rugby, a sorority and so many other fun events. It made my experience alot more enjoyful.

What's the most frustrating thing about your school?

The most frustrating thing about my school is there financial aid department. Every year I have to strive to get financial aid, and they really don't work well with the students and try to find ways to make them able to attend there institution. I had to go to part-time because I could not pay to be a full-time student.

Details

  • Enrollment
  • 7,500
  • Tuition & Fees
  • $8,457
  • Acceptance rate
  • 88%

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