The following reviews are the views of students or alumni at this school and are unrelated to the school data and other editorial content on usnews.com. These reviews neither reflect nor impact a school's position within the Best Colleges rankings.
Whether CMC is the right size depends on what you're looking for. A small residential campus with small class sizes is perfect for me and I think most people are happy here. CMC is something of a no-name school: people either know it or they don't. If they do know it, they have *a lot* of respect for it and understand the caliber of students. Claremont is definitely a college town considering that there are four other colleges and a graduate school. The Village really contributes to the college town feeling. The Athenaeum is very unique. Other, bigger schools may get the occasional speaker; we get them four nights every week, and we have the chance to talk to them personally by sitting at the head table. There's a great emphasis on studying abroad, and it seems like about half of students do. The Off-Campus Study Office is very organized and really helps students through the process of deciding where they want to go, picking the program, applying, and returning to campus. It's a great opportunity not to be missed.
I absolutely love Claremont Mckenna. Coming from New York City, it's a big change as there isn't alot of diversity and the community's really small. However, I found the adjustment to be really easy. Everyone here is really friendly; I feel that CMC only admits people who will fit in with the rest of the student body, so everyone pretty much gets along here. I remember joining a Facebook group before I came to CMC called 99% of the people you'll meet in college. There were people like 'the person who answers every question in class', 'the druggie', the cool asian chick, the social loser, etc. When I came to CMC I never met any of those people because the whole student body is pretty much homogenous (but in a good way). The best thing about CMC is the community. Although CMC only has a little above 1000 students, the entire 5C community (scripps, harvey mudd, pitzer, pomona, and cmc) combined makes up for it. You can meet tons of different people at the other colleges which are around a 5 minute walk away. Weekend nights are the best because there are 5C parties where everyone congregates. In addition, you get to eat at other colleges, so I think there's around seven dining halls to choose from. Speaking of food, the food is amazing. I think were ranked number 10 as having the best college food. Each college dining hall has different types of food so if you want sushi go to Scripps College on Friday and if you want steak go to Harvey Mudd on Sunday. Having seven dining halls helps alot because you don't really get tired with the food. Plus CMC has tea time and snack which are amazing. For an hour in the afternoon the Ath serves pastry, rice krispies treats and drinks which is great because while you're changing classes you can just grab something to eat. And at night time, when you want to take a study break, you can just go to snack where the dining hall serves things like mozzarella sticks, spring rolls, and donuts. (seriously, its sooo easy to gain weight here). The dorms at CMC are amazing as well. Personally, I like North Quad the best because that's where most parties are, the rooms are the biggest, and you share the bathroom with one other room. NQ dorms feel like hotels because we have maid service that comes everyday to clean and our door opens up to outside, so we don't have to walk through a hallway. Each quad is said to have a personality of its own. North quad is for people who like to party, South Quad if for more studious people, and Mid Quad is somewhere in between.
Best thing about CMC: they care about their students and their futures! School size is just right for me, good class size, good relationships with your professors, you're not just a number you have a name. The village that's about a five minute walk away has some fun college hang out places, LA is only a 35 minute drive away. The campus brings so much to us there's almost no reason to leave.
Most people I know have never heard of CMC - the one's who have are always impressed.
CMC is awesome. It's in a gorgeous area with perfect weather and there's always a lot of stuff going on on-campus. You get the benefits of a small school in terms of small class sizes and getting to know your professors on a really personal level, but you have the resources of a large school because it's part of a larger consortium. If you get sick of the kids on campus there's always four other schools where you can go hang out. You won't spend much time partying off-campus because there isn't much of a college town, but then again partying on-campus is way more fun than going to the local bars where everyone's old and ugly and the drinks are expensive. There are tons of AWESOME places to go hiking, and if you don't have a car or gear it doesn't matter because there is an extremely well-organized outdoors club among the five colleges, and the club helps fund trips, coordinates carpools, and provides gear for free (unless you damage it). One really cool thing about CMC is that it will help fund you for almost anything you want--trips, internships, events, speakers, etc. For instance, the school gave me several thousand dollars to go to Ecuador and work with an environmental NGO this summer--the faculty is very invested in helping you chase your goals.
Best thing: the people. Super smart, very involved, if a little on the toolish side. The professors are excellent. The school is just right for me, but I'd only recommend it if you think you'll want a very small school. Some people have complained that it gets a little cramped after four years. Definitely "what college town," although the new Village expansion has more classy bars, some medium to expensive restaurants, and a movie theater. The president is very capable at some things, but is a very poor speaker and bad at relating to students. This didn't really impact my experience, though. I think the most unusual thing about CMC is its moderating tendency. Especially with respect to politics, you're almost guaranteed to come out more moderate than you were before. This may or may not be a good thing.
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