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I really like the feel of just walking around campus, because it's a really nice campus with lots of greenery and I also like how the buildings, especially on south campus, look. But it seems like the administration is more concerned with prestige and sounding important than the well-being of the students. They recently spent one and a half million dollars to have the last 2008 presidential debate here on campus. I think that's really cool, but I kind of wish they had spent that money, plus maybe the money put towards the incredibly fancy "University Hall" (which students barely ever have a chance or reason to go into), renovating the decrepit dorm buildings. Also, the town of Hempstead isn't a very hospitable, or even welcoming, place for college students. Almost every week I hear of a stabbing or assault of some Hofstra student or another, and these are usually just down the street at the local bar or club.
Best thing about Hofstra is that the school represents the best of both worlds. We get the Suburban atmosphere of Long Island, but we're just a half hour away from NYC -- the biggest metropolis in the world, and the urbanity that comes with it.
There are three really awesome things about Hofstra that tie for "the best thing about Hofstra". One- the Honors College is great. The events they put on, the program itself, and the staff that work in the department are all fantastic. Two- the Music Department is amazing. The faculty are brilliant and humorous, and love what they teach, and the students in the department are hard working and kind. Three- the campus is absolutely beautiful, especially in the spring. I really like the size of the school, but that's because I'm in a relatively small Department. The balance is great: the school is pretty big so it has a lot of options for events and dining and meeting new people, but the Music Department is small enough to know everyone and make close friends. I spend most of my time on campus. And most of my on campus time is spend in the music building... practicing, rehearsing, etc. There are two things that I would change about Hofstra. One- the financial system kind of stinks. I've had a problem every single semester with financial aid and/or student accounts where incorrect amounts have been put on my account, or my aid changes and I'm not notified, or fees appear for no good reason... in general, things here cost A TON, and Hofstra tends to take money from you any opportunity they get. Two- the dorming situation. Freshmen are given the best options and then are kicked out of their living space after their first year. The options for upperclassmen are limited.
Lately, Hofstra has improved some of it's classrooms. It is less like an NYC public school and more like a University that I pay to attend. If I could change anything, I would change alot of things. But one thing I would change is school spirit and participation. There is very little and students should take advantage of programs and events and attend them. But, it is nice to have small groups sometimes and b/c nobody attends, you could take advantage of it. The school is too small for people who want a big school that you can get lost easily in and not know names but just right for those who like smaller classes and more intimate groups. People for the most part don't know Hofstra unless it's Hofstra law or business or grad school. Hofstra is a nothing school, it's not NYU, it's not an ivy league, it's not a big deal. But you knew that when you came. There is no "college town". You need a car to get anywhere off campus. There are no nearby places to go (for the most part). I think Hofstra's administration is ...trying. I have no real opinion about it. There seems to be a strange "pride" about hofstra. People walk around wearing sweatshirts, sweatpants, etc. but that might just be b/c the "pride" are the sports teams and it's included in slogans and e-mail accounts... Hofstra is not very diverse but it could be worse. The food is unremarkable and overpriced, the campus can be very dirty, it can be pretty, it can be nice or noisy, it can surprise you or not. The dorms are not very nice, but they do have air conditioning in summer and heating in the winter time. There are excellent professors but then there are also "bad" professors. The school is more like a community college that anything else. A large portion of students commute, which probably contributes to the lack of school spirit and participation in clubs, events, etc. The same as anywhere, you will meet good people and/or people you hate. Students frequently complain about security on campus, parking, schoolwork and other students. Hofstra actually has very good advising and resources if you take advantage of them and use them. There is a good counseling center and you can use the hofstra wellness center although studens complain about it also.
Students care very little. There are a lot of clubs and organizations, but a very small percentage of the student body gets involved. there is no relationship between Hofstra and the local community. It is the absolute oposite of a college town. The various administrations know nothing but their own individual positions, if that. You always get sent from department to department on the "Hofstra shuffle" while trying to get answers.
Hofstra's atmosphere is probably what drew me in the most. Being a mid-sized school (app. 8,000 undergrad) it has the resources of a large university and the community of a smaller college. The campus is beautiful, but it's not a campus bubble. I mean, you don't feel like you're stuck on campus for four years. Internships are encouraged (if not required) and the school takes advantage of the proximity to NYC just as much as the students do. There are PLENTY of things to do in the area, and I'm still just barely getting a taste of the stuff the whole Island has to offer after three years here. And it's still a young school. Hofstra's less than 100 years old and is really building up it's reputation among some of the larger more well-known universities.
Kelly JuniorReviews provided by: Unigo