The most striking aspect of Washington and Lee is its strong honor system. The students here are simply expected to act like gentlemen or women, and are treated as if they are. Thus, we are allowed to take tests without a proctor in the room, and sometimes are even permitted to take the tests back to our dorm. In these cases, the University simply assumes that we are honorable enough to be trusted not to cheat. However, if any student is discovered breaking that trust, the only punishment is expulsion, as the standard fo trust does not allow for exceptions.
The tours are very misleading, and the administration is brilliant at covering up the many social gaffes that occur at Washington and Lee due to the extreme binge drinking problems. I am appalled that a university that is supposedly upheld by such a "superior honor system" acts only to protect its students from the realities of underage binge drinking.
W&L is a great school, and regardless of your major or your race you'll probably do well in life with a degree from this university. Your experience here will vary based on the fraternity/sorority you join or don't join. Also, students that fit the school's stereotype will have an easier time adjusting here than students who don't fit the stereotype.
The campus is definitely worth a visit in person, and try to stay overnight if you can pull it off. However, I didn't have the best impression my first visit, but it's only improved from there, especially once I started taking classes. Definitely consider it!
I absolutely love W&L. It is my favorite place on Earth and I would not trade my time here for anything. W&L has changed my life and I can't imagine where I would be without the influences and knowledge I have gained from my time here at Washington and Lee University.
W&L is a great school and I am definitely happy with my choice. That said, I highly recommend visiting and staying with a student for a night to make sure it's a good fit, because it's not a place for everyone.
Rep. Joe "you lie!" Wilson, W&L Class of 1969.
Pat Robertson, W&L Class of 1950.
W&L is on the upswing. Students are getting smarter, more dedicated and more diverse. The University has spent quite a bit of time and money making sure that everything a student will ever need is available. In combination with the amazing history, legacy and record of the University, I believe its the ability of the individual students that make this place amazing.
The school goes a great job of playing down the negatives, spinning them to positives and making it look like there's a lot of diversity on campus. There's not. Spend time here, talk to people and really try to figure out if you can live here for four full years. If you can deal with all the bad (or you thin the bad is good), you'll have the time of your life.
This is a school you'll either hate or become devoted to.
Not every school is the right fit for everybody, and W&L is no exception. Don't come if: you don't want to party. This does not mean drink! Plenty of people have a social life and stay sober, but it is important that you are open to other people drinking, because it is a beloved past time of many students. Don't come if: you don't like to study. This is college; there are papers, and tests, and yes, even some homework. None of these are easy, and all take time. Don't come if: you don't like to be involved. We have a huge percentage of students in athletics, fine arts groups, organizations and university committees. Don't come if: you are adverse to travel. We are in the middle of no where, and it takes effort to get here. Shopping is also a difficulty: the closest mall is an hour away. Finally, don't come if: you don't like extreme weather. Coming from Texas, I didn't know what cold was, but you learn quickly to adapt. Layering is a must. It can also get very hot (there is a lot of on campus tanning). It also rains, a lot.
You have to be tough, and love to socialize to have fun here. It's important to know that the social scene, specifically the Greek Life scene become nearly insignificant by senior year and begins to dwindle considerably Junior year. As long as you remember that the reason you are in college is to learn, you will be able to keep things in perspective, W&L offers a great education with a wild-ride of a social scene to match.
W&L is not for everyone. It is a school you either love or hate, but if being here for fall term as a freshman doesn't scare you off then chances are you'll love it for life.
My school is very interested in social prowess and fashion. The Greek system dominates everything, and men are extremely disrespectful to women.
W&L is a great school. It is a wonderful place, and gives its students an amazing education and experience.
Being at W&L has been one of the best experiences in my life. Something is always happening on campus, even though we are in a small town with VMI next door. The professors and students really do have a relationship of mutual respect; and since we’re in a smaller liberal arts school, it’s very easy to get involved in what you’re passionate about, whether sports, clubs, or you have the ability to create what you’re looking for. W&L alumni are just as passionate about W&L as the current students here on campus, and the alumni want W&L students to succeed in life after college. I saw this when I went to an alumni’s house for accepted students before my first year, and I was convinced when I got an internship in my selected field sophomore year that was presented to me by W&L alumni. The W&L experience doesn’t end after your four years; it stays with you for a lifetime.
The sense of community - both on campus and around the country. The alumni network is very strong, as are the bonds forged with students during their time on campus. We recognize the value of our school and the educational advantages it allows us. Students here feel fortunate and connected due to the very selective admissions as well as the sense of honor and tradition that pervade the entire community.
Washington and Lee University is an excellent educational experience for the comitted and intelligent student. Be prepared to spend five hours a day outside of class on schoolwork on a regular weekday, and more when preparing for tests. The social life is unparalelled, with a highly involved Southern greek scene that you will find nowhere else in the United States. The alumni are comitted to the university and its students, and have no problem either helping you find a job after college or sitting on the porch reminicing upon their days at Washington and Lee.
Very strong emphasis on acting like "ladies" and "gentlemen." Basically a very strict honor code, but one that is for the benefit of you as the student.
Zach on his favorite things about UW.
Rob on UW.
Hilde on her favorite things at UW.
One student on his favorite things about UW.
Becca on her favorite things at UW.
Interview about who might not feel at home at UW
Interview about who might not feel at home at UW.
Interview about another school classmates applied.
Interview about UW’s Reputation.
We were all "that kid": W&L is made up of students who, in high school, balanced academic, extracurricular, and social commitments without breaking a sweat.
It's a difficult place to survive, but if you do you will leave a socially and intellectually confident adult.
please, visit the campus before you decide! most people are packing a full schedual of things to do, but you should be able to ask anyone a question on anything about their expirience or where things are. if you are not comfortable here, you may not thrive to your fullest potential.
a lot of fun-loving, outdoorsy frat-guys who smoke too much pot and drink too much alcohol but will end up being successful.
Comparable schools... of which W&L still tops:
Recent grads salivate at the thought of Homecoming in October and Alumni weekend in April-- its only twice a year now we get to return home.
Overall, I'm pleased to be in a torrid love affair with W&L. I plan on it lasting a while.
Washington and Lee is like any school. It has had its ups and downs and is currently working to make the institution the best that it can be. It won't take a year, two years, or even a decade to get there, but the point is, we are trying to get there, wherever there is. The school is amazing and if you want to come here, you have got to come visit ahead of time.
Sometimes I have to get away from the school and the town because it gets to be too small for me. But as soon as I leave, I can't wait to get back. There is no other place like W&L; it's strange to go just an hour away to a large state school where everything is different. I can't imagine walking on campus and not recognizing a single face. The reason W&L remains so prestigious is because its students are so close. People love the school because it brings together so many interesting and real people. There's a special bond W&L students form, and it can be seen in the strong alumni association. There is no way you can fail here--socially, academically; you direct your life, and you learn how to make it perfect for you.
HUGE hookup culture. Not much dating going on. It's all DFM (Dance Floor Makeouts) and other drunk making out. A lot of relationships are purely based on drunk interactions. I "dated" a guy for four months and only hung out with him twice in a sober situation.
I absolutely love it!!!
I’m not quite sure I want this to be published. My response to this is questionnaire has been honest, although perhaps not as in depth as it could have possibly been.
VISIT THIS SCHOOL.
I've been to two schools-- W&L and Tulane. Although the social activities were more diverse, I found the campus to be extremely deafening when it came to freedom of speech. If I did not follow the strict lines and spew out whatever my professors or TA told me, I would get a lower grade.
Here, it is much more diverse. Despite all our stereotypes, there is more freedom of speech here than at a bigger, more diverse university.
be prepared!!! girls, if you're going to washington and lee, buy sun dresses. lots of them...trust me you'll need them.
and if drinking grain, drink the color the frat boys are drinking.
The administration and the police are the worst things about the school barrin the occasional racist asshole.
Visit before you commit to coming here.
WnL is a great place to be if you don't mind being away from a big city.
The Greek system can be overbearing at times. Also, BRING A CAR. Be ready for a campus that's in a city in the middle of nowhere -- the closest regional airport is an hour away, and the closest major airport is Dulles, which is a three-hour drive north. There's no public transportation; everyone walks or catches rides to Wal-Mart. If you're into Journalism, it's an excellent school, especially when it comes to publications. We've got two weekly papers, a conservative magazine, a pop-culture magazine, a political review, a literary magazine, a weekly television broadcast, and a journal of science, among others -- and those are just the student-run publications! The journalism department hosts the Rockbridge Report, a weekly broadcast and online newsmagazine that provides news for the cities of Lexington and Buena Vista and Rockbridge County.
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