Williams College Top Questions

Is the stereotype of students at your school accurate?


Many students at Williams are athletes. My entry alone had a person on almost every sports team. Ironically, sporting events are not always that well attended. Since lots of people play sports, they are often at their own sporting event and unable to go to other events. Plus, it is Williams, so there is always a LOT of work to be done. The Berkshires are beautiful, so it would be a shame for people aren't outdoorsy to come here. The views of the purple mountains are staggering, especially during the fall with all the shades of purple. People here certainly know how to party. That being said, I've never felt ostracized for not partying or drinking. Sometimes, the drunken debauchery gets on my nerves though.


Stereotypes about Williams and athletes.


A student talks about Williams stereotypes


Generally so, about 70{4a082faed443b016e84c6ea63012b481c58f64867aa2dc62fff66e22ad7dff6c} of students are involved in a sport.


For the most part, yes.




Yes and no. The school is growing more diverse every year, as they offer financial aid that is 100{4a082faed443b016e84c6ea63012b481c58f64867aa2dc62fff66e22ad7dff6c} of need and admissions are need blind. I'm from a small town in upstate NY, went to public school, neither of my parents have bachelors degrees and worked blue collar jobs for a living. I don't play a sport and own no Lacoste.


Kids aren't as competitive as they made it sound. But grades are very important to almost all Williams students. Not everyone is a geek - especially since many kids play varsity sports. Yet school work is extremely important and taken seriously by all students.


There are a lot of jocks, a large number of the students are preppy, and there is a social crowd for everyone- there are lots of different types of people on campus, so you can find a drinking or non-drinking social life depending on what you want


for a large portion of the athletic population but even though they are true it is not the only way to define these students. you find yourself surprised by the most unlikely subjects.


I have met some "snobby" people, but the majority of the people I know are dedicated to their work and thoughtful. Williams is isolated, but in no way disconnected with the more important national issues (especially gloabl warming).


Not always


There is so much more to Williams than its stereotypes. There are a lot of white, upper middle class kids from the suburbs, but they are all different in their own way. Williams has a lot of money which is a great thing for kids on financial aid. The academics ARE wonderful. There ARE a lot of athletes. However, Williams' sense of community is what makes it stand out.




Yes and No. One cannot deny the fact that many Williams students come from very wealthy backgrounds. You can look at many of the student parking lots and see very expensive cars. However, there is a culture at Williams of not showing off, and I have many friends, who I only found out months after befriending are extremely wealthy. In other words there is no aristocratic air at Williams - people may come from wealthy backgrounds, but don't flaunt it. In addition, one can point to the fact that Williams provides financial aid for nearly half the students, meaning that there is a focus on accepting students from lower socio/economic backgrounds. Speaking to the question of Williams being a "jock school." Again, a large majority of Williams students are members of various varsity teams. However, as a student athlete myself, I can honestly say that I am always impressed at how intelligent our student athletes are. Many have gotten in on their own merits and simply take advantage of the fact that Williams has so many varsity sports.


I would say that most students seem to identify with these stereotypes and even wear them with pride... "awkward" included. The granola is just necessary to keep you fueled for all of the studying, hiking, running or otherwise sporting activities you end up doing. I think that the activity level of students is one of the very positive things about this institution, and while I don't participate in sports myself, I find myself motivated to go running and to the gym on a fairly regular basis, and this helps counterbalance the incredible stress of the academic load.


While we do spend a lot of time with our rigorous academics and like to have our fun on the weekends, I think that we are a lot more moderate than our stereotype. Most students are involved in some sort of extracurricular (sports, a capella, our environmental club, dance, and student unions are all very popular), spend some time each week just hanging out with friends and relaxing (particularly on Thursday nights with either Lost, The Office, or Grey's Anatomy), and alternate "playing hard" with going to performances/games and late night visits to Snack Bar. There is always something to do at Williams, no matter what you feel like doing.


Not at all. I was really surprised to discover that stereotype because it's so off. Not everyone's preppy and hardly anyone I've met is pretentious. Williams is an amazing mix of different kinds of people that are overall extremely humble regarding their phenomenal accomplishments.




Partly. The rich and liberal parts, definitely. Some of the students fulfill the other three, as well, but it's very easy to find groups that don't.


Like any stereotypes, they describe some Williams students but not every Williams student


This is mostly true. A lot of people seem to be stereotypical jocks when you first meet them but then you'll be talking to them and they suddenly say something really clever or insightful. It catches you off-guard and reaffirms your faith in the school.


To some degree there are definitely people that fit them but not even close to everyone is like that.


Some of them still exist, but just over the four years I've been here I've noticed significant change.


for the most part they are wrong


Pretty much, although you don't have to be athletic and on a sports team to be really happy. Williams has no many activities to offer and everyone finds a niche to fit them.


On certain levels these stereotypes are accurate, and there are certainly people here who embody all those traits. However, there is also a large majority that does not.




We are all smart, most are athletic, and if you aren't wealthy already, you soon will be.


Some of them are. They are not absolute but represent the majority. Eg, they are smartor they are rich.


The last three are


It's true that our campus is athletic. But we're a fit and outdoorsy, not jocks. We have plenty of people who do sports, but they are usually involved in a non-athletic group, and we have plenty of people who don't do sports at all but have a found their place in other extracurricular communities.


Not all of them.






yes, fairly accurate


Somewhat. Almost everyone does sports or works out all the time, and we are not that well informed about international affairs.


Yes and no. Some students definitely come from the upper class, and you can tell from their behavior. But Williams also has a lot of other students.


There are a lot of athletic types, which can be a but off putting look-wise. For the most part, people at Williams are too smart to be preppy.


They are to some extent, but most of the people I know don't actually fit these stereotypes, at least not wholly.


For the most part not at all


true for part of the school and anyone seeking to avoid this type of atmosphere can easily do so


For the most part.


Not really.


Some of us are nerds, some of us aren't very good looking, some are smart jocks


For the most part, yes


Not really. There's a pretty wide mix of people and everyone finds their own balance between school and extracurriculars.


while we do work hard, we aren't all academic geniuses. Though the school likes to amplify the fact we have all this diversity on campus, we still are a dominantly white campus, and the MCC, as well as the minority student groups, are all hidden away in Morley circle, hardly seen by those potentials passing through, especially when considering that the tours don't even venture near Morley circle.




Not at all.