Wesleyan University Top Questions

Describe the students at your school.


what can i say.. its WHITE AND RACIST. ignorant at best.


definitely a very liberal social atmosphere.. there are a lot of radical thinkers and a generally accepted queer population. but there are many different "types" of people. many defy easy categorization. people dress however they want, which doesnt mean there aren't some preppy kids. notable: this year at graduation a large number of seniors won't wear caps and gowns.. a student figured out we don't have to wear them to participate in the ceremony. instead of spending $55 on cloth we'll only wear once, we are donating that money to a housing project in our community. (I think this is representative of the wesleyan student body.. a student taking initiative to question and modify something that a lot of the the world takes for granted) I know a few politically moderate guys on sports teams who plan on going into finance or investment banking, who have told me they feel out of place here. But they came here because its the school with the best academic reputation they got into, and they don't particularly regret the decision.


There are tons of small liberal arts colleges with outstanding academics, but the student body is the reason I chose Wes. The people here are awesome. I have learned as much or more from my peers this year as I have from my classes, and I think that's the way it should be.


I am the kind of student the would feel out of place at Wesleyan, but as an athlete most athletes or athlete-type personalities simply stick together and form a sub-culture at Wesleyan that is party centered. Different types of students on a basic basis interact, but the athletes ("the tech") and the radical, stereotypical Wesleyan types ("techies") tend not to interact. There is a lot of left-winged political activism at Wesleyan.


Wesleyan is definitely becoming less queer, big time. More than half of students are not on any financial aid, so it's a very wealthy student body, but one where student's don't want to admit they are wealthy. Many students are from NY, MA, and California. Way too many white hipsters, with skinny jeans. There are frats on campus, so preppy people go there. Students are mostly politically aware, mostly identifying as "very liberal," but outside of the occasional anti-war protest, spend most of their free time drinking or smoking. Students don't talk about how much they will earn one day and pretend that they will go save the world, but most students end up getting high-paying jobs after graduating.


The student body has many different niches. There are plenty of diverse groups on campus in every social aspect you can think of. Something that's really nice is that I don't feel like part of one particular group because I relate to so many.


Leftist, roughly 15{4a082faed443b016e84c6ea63012b481c58f64867aa2dc62fff66e22ad7dff6c} gay or lesbian, either well-off upper middle class or, rarely, struggling lower class, and a pretty well racially integrated student body. Most students are from the NY area or California. There is a vocal minority who are highly involved in politics.


D-I-V-E-R-S-I-T-Y. If you stay in your cage at Wesleyan, you will never know what waits out there. To be honest, as an international student at Wesleyan, I did feel unprepared for the culture shock that was to ensue my first year in college. After getting over the cultural shift, I realized that Wesleyan students are an incredibly friendly bunch who will smile, chat and share a cigarette if approached. I have made some of my best friends through simple introductions of curiosity. There is something for everyone in Wesleyan. And if there isn't, people usually make it happen. It's that simple.


I think religious students would feel out of place at wesleyan. There is a large bias against religion in general. Most wesleyan students are from the northeast from upper middle class backgrounds. Students are left politically, but less politically active than you might expect.


the diversity at wesleyan is unlike any i've seen at a liberal arts school-- people are always organizing around race, class and gender issues on campus, as well as relevant world events. groups I've organize with: trans/gender spectrum women of color house womanist cunt club wesprep wesdef


Wesleyan's student body is predominately sheltered rich kids which is by no means a terrible thing but can make going to school here feel very much like a psuedo-reality. The school is very cliquey but I feel everyone finds a niche since for such a small school there is a tremendous amount of student activity.


The university's residential units generally house far-left leaning individuals, though a relatively small group of politically conservative students can certainly be found. Interestingly, many students seem not to connect political leanings with economic attitudes. Consequently, there seem to be few Neo-Marxists or Trotsky-minded critics, but a wealth of staunch Democrats from upper middle class to upper class backgrounds concerned with particular 'liberal' movements (animal treatment banner stereotype?) In fact, politics is often a topic of discussion but one that finds itself too well heard. Hence, or maybe just because it's something to do, the student body has a very active element. Demonstrations, with their own form of transportation to the particular site, are certainly not uncommon. With diversity comes of course an ethnic awareness. In this self-divisive manner, particular groups of students come into being--some even have houses or buildings dedicated to their particular culture or, in some cases, more obvious forms of distinguishing. Some see this as problematic but remain sensitive, and there are very few notable hate-based crimes.


Politically aware and thoughtful, if not active...we always try to be open-minded, and there's an overabundance if anything of dialogue about every issue imaginable. Definitely left-leaning. There are distinct social circles, but not in too clique-y a way. A little like the Mean Girls cafeteria, but not so exclusive. The community is more diverse than most, I think - culturally, ethnically, geographically, and financially, although the last one is limited by our relatively small endowment.


although a lot of kids from Wes are from Massachusetts and New York, there's still plenty of diversity and plenty of kids from different states and different countries. before coming to Wes, I was worried that I wouldn't find enough kids like me and that too many kids would be too extreme about being part of the counterculture and being activist, but I quickly realized that there are still plenty of kids like me, and that there is someone here that really anyone from any background can relate to.


While I can't speak for the present, during my undergraduate period, just about every group you can imagine was represented at Wes. There were international students from most countries, and people from various subcultures and socio-economic groups. Overall, the student body tends to be composed of compassionate, passionate people. I'd say that the only type of person who might not feel comfortable there would be one with a closed mind, or with very conservative views.


My friends are wonderful! I was afraid Wesleyan was clique-y, but different students do interact, we just definately form close knit groups. My friends are my new family, and are all from different parts of the country (or a different country) with diverse and fascinating backgrounds. When I got the flu for two days, several people stopped by and brought medicine, flowers, candy, fruit, emergen-c, cards, comic strips and mountains of cough drops. They are sincerely compassionate people, and I'm so grateful to go to a school where people value independence while simultaneously taking care of each other like they do here.


Wesleyan prides its self in its diversity and it is diverse. With a school so focused on being liberal and progressive, there is a problem with integration though. While I have seen no evidence that the student body at Wesleyan is racist or classist or an -ist, there defiantly self segregating occurring. Students tend to travel together based on three main categories: sports teams/group, race, and economic background. Ex. at the dinning hall there are often all black, all asian, all white tables. While this is not wrong, at an institution that prides its self on equality and progressiveness this seems to point towards a slacking commitment to those ideals. Also, Wesleyan's students are often perceived or stereotyped as rich and upper class. There is a wide range of economic and social backgrounds present though.


Students here are very politically aware and active, somtimes obnoxiously so. Many are very rich as well, although often you would never know it. To me the school feels diverse but still not quite to outside-word proportions. The majority of people are white and upper-middle-class, probably from the Northeast, and likely Jewish. Every possible group is represented here though, and lots of people are on financial aid as well. The groups mix incredibly well - probably because most people feel safe here.


The student body is pretty diverse, with a well-articulated queer community and hipster population. For the most part, students are open to others and accepting of differences between people, but there is an awareness of the generally middle-upper class background of the student body.


There is no diversity at Wesleyan. One of my black friends once told me that he knew everything single black kid at the school. For the most part Wesleyan uses its Asian scholarship program (Friedman) to get really smart kids to come to the school while simultaneously claiming that its boosting diversity. When I think of diversity, I expect a bit more range...Generally the Asian non-Americans keep to themselves and talk in their respective languages. I'd say the school is about 15-20& Jewish, but very few of them are practicing. For the most part the school is rich. I know a lot of kids on financial aid, but they are still pretty well off being that the school is one of the highest tuitions in the nation. I'd say that the black students feel the most out of place. The school pretends to be this big accepting field day, but I feel that the white kids have their own racist views that they keep to themselves, or try not to display. This is Connecticut... What do kids wear in class? Where to begin...From ripped up clothing, to outfits that are so over the top it's hard to say what's normal. I think the worst was during my Social Psychology class where the activity of the week was to do something that broke a social norm. Some kid came in dressed as a Jack of Hearts with a giant card taped to his front and back. It felt like Middle School all over again with kids begging for attention... Talking about how much you will/want to earn one day is an unspeakable taboo. Here at Wesleyan, we value integrity over greed and corporate success, and of course we're all going to be homeless one day.




As an English and Music major, I couldn't be happier. The music department is tops in the country, and is filled with legendary jazz and experimentalists like Anthony Braxton and Alvin Lucier, all who are incredibly accessible. (You're not going to find anyone that famous willing to sit down with you for an hour at Yale, kids.) The English department is of the same caliber, and so were my experiences in Biology, Art History, History, and many other departments.


Wesleyan students are politically progressive intellectuals. They are generally fairly wealthy. There is fair percentage of the student body that are students of color, a high percentage of LGBT students, and very few conservatives, "jocks," or stereotypical college "frat boy" types.


Hippies and athletes. Rich white kids who pretend otherwise. Predominantly leftist, completely leftist, entirely leftist. Experiences with racial or LGBT groups can be tough because they are often so militant and unwelcoming to reason. The kind of student that would feel out of place is one who does not buy the party line. Four tables in the dining hall: -white athletes from Boston -unwashed hippies -vegans -LGBT


Wesleyan is a more-than-most-liberal-arts-schools open community that still has issues of Race, Gender and Class fomenting under the surface. At Wesleyan there is not enough, but far more dialogue about these issues than at anywhere else I have heard of or experienced. It's populations are working toward deconstructing some of these issues and should be commended and encouraged.


Wesleyan is as diverse as diverse can be while still being full of generally well-off kids from good homes who had the money - if not to attend the best schools - to give time to their studies in high school. True diversity -a false concept if there ever was one - is not the reality there. This doesn't mean that Wesleyan doesn't deserve credit for the tremendously open space it provides for people to define themselves. This is perhaps the best interpretation to Wesleyan's claim of "diversity." People at Wes are the most self defined that I have ever met. This kind of freedom often leads to self righteous assholery but also makes for a large and interesting community of people comfortable with being themselves and passionately involved in their particular interests. If you would desire freedom you must endure people who feel free to be jerks. The side effect of this openness can be a suprising amount of comfortable and un-enforced closeting of communities. Because it is so okay to be a transgendered preppy physics student committed to change in Burma people end up seeing only the same tiny set of people who fit into the communities they see themselves a part of. If I could give advice to incoming wes students it would be to try to get a foot into as many different circles as possible. Too many kids come to wes and spend their whole experience in the confines of one community. And this in a place where they length and bredth of commmunity types is more diverse than anywhere else you are ever likely to be.


There are students of every group at Wesleyan, and for the most part, they are included by everyone else. There are a lot of wealthy kids though. Once in a while, I felt weird being slightly more middle-class (although my family is definitely not poor!). Students are politically active, and the campus is pretty far to the left, but that's one of the reasons I went there. Most kids are from New York or Boston areas or from other parts of the Northeast. However, there are kids from all over the US (like me) and the world (I think it's like 6 percent international or so).


Wes students are very open to any and all kinds of people. As long as you're passionate about something, anything, and are willing to share your passions with others, you'll fit right in here.


There aren't many conservative students at Wesleyan. They may sometimes feel out of place, because they are such a small minority. I think that they are even sometimes ridiculed. Wesleyan students preach acceptance and try to be welcoming of all religions, colors, nationalities, genders, etc. and I believe that most social settings are fairly integrated. But sometimes, students with different views, if they lean more toward the right-wing, are criticized in an unfair way. Wesleyan may not be as much of a "Diversity University" as it claims, but from what I observed throughout my four years, the student body is a good mix of people from all walks of life who come together and are able to enhance each others social and academic experiences.



Wes Lady

Wes is very accepting, so I don't think anyone would feel out of place. Some students wear sweatpants and pajamas to class and others wear designer jeans and leather boots. It totally depends of the student or the day. One student might wear a designer outfit to class one day and then pjs the next.


Wesleyan students love identity politics. Wesleyan students love their clothes. You definitely are what you wear here. All different types of students interact, but people tend to stick to their groups/"tribes" (read: hipsters, athletes, Freeman Asian Scholars, women of color, thespians, etc.) socially. Most Wesleyan students are from New England, specifically New York and Boston, or at least East of the Mississippi, with strong showings from LA and Chicago. I costs about $200,000 to go here for four years. People here are generally either really wealthy and can pay this in full or really not and get a lot of financial aid. The middle class gets totally fucked.


Wesleyan students and the administration really strive to be as inclusive as possible, to a truly remarkable degree. Racial tension definitely exists on campus, but I always appreciated that at least students and the administration demonstrated a huge willingness to bring those issues out into the open and seriously attempt to address them. There is a really robust and ever-present dialogue about the way that race, class and power worked on our campus. One thing I love is that during freshmen orientation, all freshmen go through a student-run workshop where they're taught about different gender and sexuality identities, and asked to go through a series of exercises where they imagine what college might be like for such a person. It's really radical as freshmen orientations go, and I loved it. Politically conservative students would feel very out of place, and would probably feel constantly attacked. There are tons of wealthy kids at Wesleyan, but the campus's progressive politics make flaunting that money very taboo. As a working class student myself, I sometimes felt that the masking of wealth was problematic, but I more often appreciated that conspicuous consumption was not a part of my social and academic worlds.


Upsides: A few good stereotypes actually hold up here. The student body is culturally, racially, and geographically diverse. They're generally very friendly. Many students are remarkably tolerant toward people from "alternative" backgrounds (define that as you will). The students are pretty liberal in general, which I would call a good thing. Also, they're quite smart. I mean, at least academically. Downsides: Wes students are not really as different or special as they think they are. Most of them come from money, and though they might have done a little waitservice in high school, they have financial safety nets that will comfortably sustain them until they enter the workforce. I know plenty of students who feel entirely comfortable charging a new textbook, iPod, or USB drive to the student account because "it's not my money." Since Wes students love to think of themselves as alternative, most carry a high degree of disdain for people from traditional backgrounds or beliefs. Practicing Christians bear the brunt of this, and are quietly mocked as "ignorant" or "conformist." Same goes for fraterities. It's no wonder to me why so many athletes at Wes choose to stick with their own or sit quietly in the back of class. Also, many Wesleyan students are just dumb. They can quote Hegel but they can't toast a bagel. They've been to Tashkent but forget to pay the rent. Ok, sorry, but seriously - Wesleyan students have less per-capita common sense than I thought possible. It's a wonder some of them even remember to breathe.


Wesleyan is a completely divded campus. Everyone gets a long but there is definitely a divide between the more conservative, frat party, athlete scene and the hipster unconventional scene. You will know everything about everyone in your group. The Usdan University center has two dining spaces, one side has become for athletes etc and the other for the other group. You and your friends always sit on the same side, if there is no space and you go to the other side you will not know or recognize anyone there.


I'd say that despite WEsleyan's gung-ho attitude about the diversity, the "diversity house" here allows a lot of student minorities to isolate themselves from the rest of the campus. The minority students i do know, that live near me or are in my classes are really friendly and personable and there's clearly no racial issues, but there is some annoying separation. The type of student that would not fit here is anyone who is narrow minded. honestly, the only students i know here are those that think everyone is weird and aren't accepting of other points of view. not be stereotype, but it is often atheletes that come here to play and don't understand the culture of the school. there is definitely a culture and preppy jocks sort of have their own little world. other than that there's loads of hippies and hipster and they make fun of each other but at the end of the day we're all friends with each other.


Can't live with them.


many people are really outspoken about racial and lgbt issues... much less so about religion. a devout christian person would probably feel very out of place here. i personally have not had trouble making friends with people in different "groups" of students... but i would never call myself part of their "group" if it was one im not really a part of - mostly because im not friends with eeeeveryone in each group.. just a couple of people.. so im not really part of that group. different groups at different tables might include: international students, jocks, lesbians, students of color, hipstery girls.. etc. but they can definitely interact with each other- they just aren't all best friends in between the different groups.


We are a diverse campus but I wish we were more diverse in terms of political representation. We get a lot of unfair stereotypes about a lot of drug use and having a lot of tree-huggers due to people associating us with Ohio Wesleyan. Students are generally quite politically active, though.


Wesleyan is very diverse. It is a little lacking in political diversity; I have only met one or two conservatives. I'd imagine they might feel a little out of place at times. Different types of students interact with each other all the time. There are not tightly-bound friend groups. Wesleyan students come from all over the place. Most come from New England and the northeast in general. Many are from California, too. Most kids come from upper-middle class families.


Wesleyan strives to be "diversity university." Now we'll ignore how lame that phrase is and address whether it is valid. Wesleyan is very diverse racially, geographically, and academically; there is a great emphasis in teaching the student body to reject any form of discrimination and to be unconditionally acceptive. This is all fine and good and for the most part the university succeeds. What you will not see here are much disparity in political thought- the school is overwhelmingly liberal and i feel dearly sorry for the underrepresented conservative contingent (well, maybe not). Wesleyan's greatest weakness in terms of diversity is the clear class divide that defines the student body of most private universities. Only those with wealthy enough families can attend a school like wesleyan, because of this everyone is perhaps more similar than we would guess.


there is some amount of racial divide on campus, though it's not terribly pronounced. Religion doesn't come up a lot in conversation, so I don't know, and definitely there's a demarcation between liberals and conservatives...it almost feels like we have less in common here than we would in other situations. So a conservative would probably feel out of place (as I'm sure you've heard already). to class we wear...whatever, pretty much. if you have class where you live you might just go wearing pajamas and slippers. most wes students are from the NE I think, especially NYC and Boston. but we have a great number of international students, and for some reason, LA kids. not so much from the midwest, though there are definitely some. financial backgrounds vary, though I'm sure that most kids are at least fairly well-off. students are moderately politically aware and active, though I think that decreases when midterms and finals roll around. people don't talk about their financial futures very much except to say that they probably won't be earning terribly much, though that doesn't seem to bother most people.


Wesleyan's student body is very diverse, especially for a small, private liberal arts school. The students here need to be ones who are active on campus and want to reach out and build relationships with people different from themselves. A student would feel out of place if they did not care about working to make a difference or get involved in some way on campus.


Most Wesleyan students are rich, radical, hippies or hipsters from New York or Boston. For all its claims about diversity, Wesleyan students all believe in the same far-left, atheist ideologies and have no tolerance for anyone who is more conservative. I really urge you to take this seriously. I remember reading in the Best 331 Colleges about how Wesleyan students are tolerant towards anyone except if you've "worn a white hat or had any Republican tendencies" and thought that that had to be an exaggeration, but it is not. As a Christian, conservative, my Wesleyan experience has been a constant struggle. There are also so many disgusting "sexually confused" people that my husband and I started playing a game where we guess whether someone is a girl or a guy. It is extremely challenging!


Wesleyan in terms of diversity (class, gender, race, ortientation, religion, nationality, etc.) is a lot more open than other schools. However, Wesleyan (its students, staff, faculty) tend to over look issues of racism, class, religion, etc. and tend to down play incidents that happen. Because of sheer numbers, students, particularly those who are of an ethnic minority, would feel out of place, undefined, and over looked at Wesleyan. If Wesleyan were a school of four lunch tables, there would be a "black" table, a "typical wes/hippie white" table, a "lgbqt" table, and table of your "average" white students. Students are largely left winged and those students are particularly active, especially with the upcoming elections.


I more or less discussed the students in "the big picture." Students are definitely politically aware and active, and often very far to the left. For someone who is concerned about that, I will say that being around some extreme lefties made me consider my arguments far more carefully, and pushed me toward the center. That's right suckers! I work in economics!


Wesleyan's student body is totally diverse. There is no dress code. I can't imagine anyone not finding their niche here.


Wesleyan is one of the most open college campuses in the country. Seriously.


Pasted below is an article I recently wrote for the Ampersand humor section of the Argus, the Wesleyan student newspaper. It sums out pretty accurately how I feel about the women at this school, and to a larger extent, the school itself. What I love about Wesleyan women (this is not a joke [well, it sort of is]) By Alex "Fuck J-Date" Gelman When I came to Wesleyan nigh onto four years ago, things were a bit different round these parts: existence was still in black and white, movies were referred to as “talkies,” and women - once derided as “barnacles on the good ship Wesleyan” by a trustee - were making their glorious return to Wesleyan University. I arrived at Wesleyan in the fall of ’aught-four, a strapping young college lad with suitcase in hand and ascot in neck. While I planned to double major in haberdashery and phrenology, I soon found myself beset with bewilderment and bewonderment by the fairest of sexes. And in the four years that followed - through all the heartache and hand jobs, the rejections and erections, the seeming infinite joy and timelessness of laying together in bed with one’s lover till daybreak, simply reveling in the metronomic symbiosis of breathing in her air and exhaling your own…and fisting - I have found one thing, and one thing alone to be true: I love Wesleyan women. For one, where in the Hell do they get those clothes?!? I mean really, sometimes I feel like every fucking girl at this school has, like, 50 fucking pashminas. I mean, honestly, the fact that I fancy myself as a heterosexual male and I know what a pashmina is just proves how head-over-heels, punch-drunk, roofied-up in love I am with the women of this school. Each time I even type that word - “pashmina” - I feel my testicles shrivel up into my body out of some visceral reaction to those flowing cashmere stoles, but I can’t help it. Every time I see some girl stroll through the main room of Olin with some paisley pashmina they bought from a one-armed, three-nostrilled gypsy on the streets of Prague, I feel my heart swell like a balloon, like some larger destiny has brought us together and I’ve known that pashmina forever, like I was there as that rugged shepherd sheared the fine hairs of his pashmina goat on the foothills of the Himalayas, like everything that has happened in my life has led up to this moment, as the sinewy frills of that silken fabric grace by my face. And that’s just the neck. Take a look at yourself in the mirror, female reader. The rest of your body is a veritable sartorial timeline dating back to the Bronze Age. Argyle sweater you nabbed off your grandpa at his funeral? Brings out your eyes! Hoop skirt? To the max, and with authentic whalebone casing to boot! Sequined tapestry you stole from a homeless man in Guatemala? ¡Muy bonita! And take a look at your feet. Now, I’ve been here for almost four years, and I can honestly say that I have never seen one female at this school wearing the same pair of shoes. Seriously. Sneakers, boots, goulashes, sandals, high heels, stilts, roller skates, rollerblades; every single pair of pedal attire I have seen at this school on the feet of females has been different from the last. Your shoes are like snowflakes; furry, clunky, shiny snowflakes, ubiquitously unique in their individuality. Now, as superficial as all these declarations of affection may seem, I see these aesthetic observations as a means to understanding what it is I truly love about the women of this school. Obviously, I guess this goes without saying, but everything I’ve said above is mired in my own interactions with the fairer sex at this school, a specific demographic that happens to be predominantly white, heterosexual, and able to afford the preponderance of clothes I may adore. But I really feel my admiration and adoration for Wesleyan women extends beyond these corporeal differences. There is a fierce independence, an undeniable streak of individuality that runs through the women I have had the pleasure of coming in contact with. Sure, the women at this school may not resemble the full-body-waxed, orange-skinned, headband-as-miniskirts labioplasties that attend some of our other American universities, but the females here are, as far as I can see, unashamedly women. And given the choice between some artificially-enhanced bionic Posh Spice-wannabe flashing her Silicone Valley to all assembled and a free-flowing, self-confident, life-embracing female who gyrates like a jello mold in the hands of a strung-out heroin addict at the sound of the first few beats of “Kids”…I would choose the latter every time.


Wesleyan is probably not the MOST diverse campus in the US, but it is also definitely not the least. The campus administration has put a lot of effort into creating safe spaces and otherwise supporting minority students, and into increasing diversity on campus. Like most selective private schools, there are a lot of wealthy students at Wesleyan, but they don't flaunt it, making it pretty easy for people of different economic backgrounds to get along pretty well. Students dress comfortably/casually for class, but hardly ever in pajamas and rarely in anything that says "Wesleyan" on it. Wesleyan is big enough that most people can find a niche there, but it is probably harder for people who aren't comfortable with being surrounded by people who are a little out of the mainstream.