Williams College Top Questions

Is the stereotype of students at your school accurate?


Well, to get into a top school, EVERYONE is smart, just that one's perspective is skewed when everyone else is so amazing. Just believe in yourself and go hang out, and with that, you'll get to know more people and see if they're just cordial or not. Clearly, not all people can be varsity sports players.


not at all


The danger of Williams and its location is that the seclusion, (if not balanced with extracurriculars), can lead to the "Purple Bubble" effect-- where you have no clue what's going on in the outside world...


There are preppy jocks who drink a lot on the weekends, but there are also unathletic, sober non-preps.


We are super-dorks. We work very hard. We are not all jocks, and those that are athletes are fascinating people.


There are great athletes, but does not describe Williams as a whole.


Athletics are very important. It can be alienating for anyone who is not into sports.




To some extent, certainly.


Pretty much. Everyone is super athletic and driven. You get a few artsy odd balls here and there.


more or less


To some extent--there are exceptions and people are also intelligent


for the most part


almost perfectly


There are more athletes at Williams than at other liberal arts colleges, which promotes the idea that it's a jock school. Williams is far from urban areas, which also makes it more difficult for activists to participate in off campus events. Williams is also more conservative than other liberal arts colleges, but the majority of its student body would identify as liberal democrats.


Sometimes it feels like it, but there are plenty of people who defy the stereotypes all the time.


Yes. - Williams is, in fact, in the middle of nowhere. - Williams students are, for the most part, ultra-brainy intellectuals - And, yes, nobody has heard of Williams...except our future employers. - Williams has it's fair share of jocks. Well...ultra-brainy intellectual ones, that is.


There are quite a few athletes at this school. There are also many rich people at this school. And many students are also preps. But, the student body certainly is limited to those characteristics and has plenty of whacky, interesting, alternative, conscious people as well.


Not entirely. We do spend a significantly greater time studying than the average college student, but we know how to have fun. Not all of us are athlete, and we are definitely not all preppy.


No, not entirely.


No, they only describe some of the student body


Yes, Williams students are high achieving and friendly people, but it's easy to forget that we are also human! Not everyone can do everything they want to and feel like they have everything under control all the time. We are very busy people, and that adds stress.


Almost entirely


Yes, to an extent. The campus is very athletic: it seems that almost everyone plays sports at some level, or spends lots of time running, hiking, or going to the gym. There are also a lot of popped collars, pearls, and people who summer on Martha's Vineyard, but the student body as a whole is made up of much more than rich preppy white kids. It's actually a pretty diverse community, both economically and racially.


All stereotypes have some degree of accuracy, but none of the above are true across the board.


for some individuals, yes. however, there are ample counter-examples, and it's not prohibitively difficult to find a group of friends who don't fit the stereotypes.




Not always


Superficially, yes. But if you look a little closer, almost every student does some sort of volunteering or extracurricular that contributes to the community.


williams does have this 'purple bubble' where its students sometimes have a false sense of reality some students fit the stereotype of rich and preppy, but there are many who don't




The student body is largely white (by numbers), but the school represents nearly every ethnic group, and has a strong, vocal international presence. At times students can be stuck-up, but these seem to be a vocal minority.


Those people exist, but no one is just one type, i find that most athletes are also musicians or artists or computer programmers, or any combination. Its a bit intimidating because everyone has so many interests and is really good at all of them.


To an extent - Williams students do work hard and we are athletic, but we take time to have fun and it's impossible to put anyone in a box.


The smart stereotype is, and the driven to some extent. Nerds is pretty accurate too. But I'd say Williams is very diverse in terms of race and socio-economic class.


yes, because all these things exist, but also no, because they don't define williams for the students who go here


To some extent, yes.


They are completely false. Yes, we all work extremely hard during the week, but Williams makes sure its students get to hang out with each other and relax especially on the weekends. There are always perfomances going on that Williams brings to the campus. There are always campus-wide parties and no activity is exclusive to a certain group. Many students just enjoy watching movies together and staying in on the weekends.




for the most part yes, but there are plenty of exceptions. and compared to other schools, like the Ivy League, many are much less true.


There are definitely those people here, but not in much greater numbers than in other places, I suspect. Definitely not enough to realize or change Williams in a fundamental way.


Some are to a degree, and some are definitely not.


among some groups, yes


It's probably accurate. There is not enough of a party scene here.


Williams is surprisingly diverse, but I do think that drinking is a big "extracurricular activity."


Actually, not really


Not entirely


Williams does have a fair amount of nerds but there is definitely a strong representation of people with all different types of interests. There are many well-rounded students as well as academically focused or athletically inclined (meat-heads) students and amongst every type of student at Williams you will find those who like to party and those who don't. As far as the political spectrum is concerned, there is a fair representation of both republicans and democrats on campus, but surprisingly, although there is a strong intellectual atmosphere at Williams, there is not a great amount of political debate that goes on.


Everyone DOES do everything. It's amazing - so many talented students. I have not met very many earthy people, though they are here, as in any campus. I have met VERY few stuck-up people, though a lot come from wealthy backgrounds: however, there are a lot of international students and many from very different economic backgrounds. And students definitely care about school work a lot, but most are involved in so many other things that they are not ALWAYS studying.


Although there is an active social scene on the weekends, and even during the weekdays, the amount of partying and drunken debauchery is not nearly as high as most would guess. Most people do go out on Friday and Saturday nights, but it's hardly the entire student population. With regards to academics, there are definitely numerous students who seem to solely devote their lives to studying. However, there are students like that at almost any academic institution, so it can hardly be used to generalize all the students at Williams. Finally, the dearth of good looking gals is an issue of strong contention. Personally, I think there are plenty of attractive girls, but the football team (and most of the guys on campus) would definitely disagree.