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Ithaca College is... cold, snowy, and still awesome. The weather is extremely unpredicable. And the best kept secret is that Ithaca summers are beautiful... because most of the population actually leaves during this time. Ithaca is a melting pot of three worlds-- Cornell, IC, and the townies. The best thing about Ithaca College is that it is the opposite of home... so my learning extended far beyond the classroom. It is a crazy mix of people of all backgrounds, ethnicities, classes, etc. But sometimes there is definitely the aura of being at a private school full of rich kids. Although this really isn't the case and perhaps the result of stereotypes. Ithaca is extremely liberal, which is a great atmosphere for education. Also, some campuses are so big that they are their own city, while some are so small it's like high school. IC is the perfect size. IC has a great sense of pride for certain events, like Cortaca, unlike Cornell that seems to be bursting with athletic enthusiasm. However, it might be the difference between a division three and a division one school. IC's lack of unity could be due to the fact that our schools within the college are fairly segregated. I personally don't feel that as much because my major is integrated. But I can say I've never, ever been in the music or theatre schools. Many programs have the same reputation of "keeping to themselves." I think if there is one thing I will always remember it is my entire freshman year... when you're life gets turned upside down and you become whatever it spits out. It's not a bad thing... like what I said about IC being the opposite of home... it gives you a chance to see things you couldn't before, it's awesome, and it's essential. IC was also never threatening, if anything... it was in the end... enlightening.
This town is absolutely beautiful when the weather's nice, but we get more days of rain/snow per year than Seattle, and the winter can seem like it lasts forever. This year we kinda skipped spring altogether... it snowed in mid-April then jumped to consistent sunny weather in the 70s out of nowhere. The view of the lake/sunset from campus is incredible, it never gets old. When the weather IS nice, there's always people out on the quads throwing a frisbee around or just laying out in the sun. Also, cliff jumping at the gorges is popular. Because it's awesome. The student body (roughly 6,000 undergrads) is a great size because there are always new people to meet, but you'll spot people you know on campus all the time, too. Parking on this campus kind of sucks. This is the first year I've had a car, and even though I live about a mile from campus I walk to class because driving really isn't much faster or convenient. I lived happily for 2 years without one, though, bumming a ride when I needed it from friends.
The campus itself is really ugly. If you are looking for a pretty school to go to, this would not be the best one. It is really cold and windy for most of the time you are in school with the exception of september and the last two weeks of spring semester. The campus is pretty good in size. Most people think you go to Cornell when you say that you are going to Ithaca. That is kind of a let down. It is a GREAT college town. There are tons of things to do, and the entire town in based on the two colleges, so you are never bored! The only problem is that Ithaca College is on a hill, and there is nothing directly around the campus, you have to bring a car or take the bus, which only leaves every hour. The administration is ridiculous, you have to walk back and forth on campus to get anything done, and they don't ever know who you really need to talk to. I really liked that the campus is on a hill, it has great view and gives you a good workout!
Best thing about Ithaca is the mix of people (jocks, computer junkies, activists, sport enthusiasts, eco-conscious go-getters) The City's laid back atmosphere. Its very much a college town between IC and Cornell, lots of bars and restaurants and two distinct social hubs including the commons and college-town. Tuition is high and continues to rise but you get your money's worth. Dorms are ok, upper classman housing is much nicer, professors in almost all departments are amazing (knowledgeable, easy to get along with and work with, some are accessible, some not so much) I spent two years living in the dorms then moved off campus with a bunch of guys I met freshmen year, best experience of my life. IC is also a pretty physically fit campus, the fitness center is constantly busy and I spent a lot of time there in my four years. If I could sum up IC in one line... I'd say that students work hard and play hard. For the most part people get their work done and work hard, but come days off or weekends, they love to go out and have a good time.
Ithaca, for all intents are purposes, is a good school. The staff is friendly and knowledgeable, the students are friendly and active, and the community has everything a student needs. The campus is relatively small, which makes traversing it fairly painless, but the facilities are adequate and up-to-date. There is always something going on somewhere - be it a party or concert off campus, or school-supported activities on campus. That is not to say that every event is interesting or worthwhile, but there are certainly options to spend one's free time. That said, there are enough student groups for everyone to at least find something to be a part of. Not every group is fantastic or large, but it's also easy to get a group started. On the other hand, IC's administration clearly did not go to business school. Every week, IC finds a new ploy to get students to hand over fists of cash, and often for the most trivial reasons. The college handles money very poorly, and the students must always be the ones to pay. Don't be fooled by IC's claims of being a good value; it is a money sink.
The best thing about Ithaca is how open it is to everything, both on campus and off. New ideas and styles are always accepted. I think that Ithaca is just right, if anything, I wish it was slightly larger. When people hear I go to Ithaca they immediately assume that I party or do drugs, since Ithaca is known of its pot usage. Ithaca is an awesome college town, with tons of restaurants and unique cafes. I wish there were more bars though, but there are some more in Cornell's College town compared to Ithaca's commons. Since I live off campus, I'm only on campus for classes and to use our awesome fitness center. Ithaca also has the reputation of previously being on Playboy's hottest college women list, and as one of the fittest campuses in the country and the fitness center is always full. The adminstration though has some problems. It's often annoying to get paperwork filled out correctly or get ahold of people for financial questions. School pride exists, especially around Cortaca, but not as much in the winter and spring sports.
Liz SeniorReviews provided by: Unigo