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One of the best things about LC is the fact that the classes are quite small. You can actually interact with your teachers, which is very helpful. If I had to change one thing, it would definitely be the tuition. LC is expensive, and while I know a lot of the money goes to good things, some of it is pissed away on things like homecoming. Like the classes, the entire LC population is small. I personally find this to be great, but I came from a high school of 45. As someone from a large school, you might feel a little claustrophobic. When I tell people I go to LC they either say, "What? Is that a real school?", "Oh, I've heard thats a good school", or "Oh, so you're just some hippie then?" I spend most of my time in my dorm building, which is a good place to be if you make friends with the other people in it early on. There are also lots of places to spend time outside if it isn't raining. Portland is great if you're over 21, and LC is only about 20 minutes away. The admin is good overall, but like any group of old people lording over young people. they can be pretty clueless as to what you really want. Controversy usually stems from misunderstanding. I will always remember living with 3 other guys in a shoe box sized room. Complaints are usually about the food, which is actually pretty good.
I love the people at Lewis and Clark. Almost every person I've met, I've liked and wanted to get to know better. I'm surprised at how helpful people are. I wish the school were a little bit bigger at times; it's really hard to avoid someone on this campus. But at the same time, that sense of community is part of its appeal. I really like that they make it so easy to go downtown (there's a free shuttle every hour) because it's easy to get off campus when you need a breath of fresh air.
I think the best thing about this school is probably the campus aesthetics and the location. Disregarding November - February, L&C is gorgeous and seems like a summer camp type atmosphere. Otherwise it is extremely wet, rainy, and cold all winter. I would say if you don't like rain this place is not for you. Portland is a great city and there are several free school shuttles that run every hour. It is a school that is a bit "different" for me at least but I am from the midwest, so it may be completely normal here. One of the great things is that everyone here is very "real," none of the superficial types I had in high school. There is a hippie presence that can be a bit weird at first but you get used to it. I think that a lot of students aren't happy with the administration... I personally don't pay attention to it and haven't anything really to fight with them about. Sports are almost non existent here, although there are a lot of teams just not any spirit to go with it. I think that the school is a great place to learn if you are interested in being well rounded and have a variety of things you want to learn. Personally, I am not so much one of these people which is one of the reasons I detested my freshmen course schedule.
One thing about which I wish the Lewis & Clark College administration cared more is the relationship between our campus and the greater Portland community. Yes, we are geographically on the outskirts of Portland, but that does not mean that we should not interact with the city more. The worst thing is the orange bus that announces to the rest of the city that this school is private and wealthy. It is embarrassing getting on that bus downtown. Last summer when I was working in downtown Portland, I wore my college t-shirt to my first day of work. I never wore it again. People from the Portland community asked me throughout the day: "So, you're really rich, huh?" "So your school is full of hippie rich hypocrites, right?" "Oh...you're the school that has that free bus." The administration, despite their rhetoric, does not care about our reputation in Portland and even does things, like painting the bus an unavoidable unsightly orange color that announces to the entire city that we get free transportation. They do not like us and the administration does not want to do anything about it.
The campus is really beautiful, but isolated. Freshman can't have cars on campus, so one must take the bus everywhere. This is easy in theory, but it was way more time consuming and exhausting in practice. And I felt like there wasn't much to do on campus. I took a lot of walks around the campus and no one was hanging out in the fall, I guess because of the weather. Lewis & Clark is very small. I didn't like the size as much as I thought I would. And the student body was not as diverse as I imagined. They have a lot of foreign exchange students but it seemed like they mostly kept to themselves. When I started telling people I was going to LC, everyone was very impressed. Apparently, it has become very prestigious over the past couple of years. Someone even referred to it as second tier ivy league. I spent a lot of time walking around the South part of campus where the chapel is. It is practically abandoned because the one classes taken over there are education degree classes. It was very nice. There is no town connected to LC. Don't be fooled. The Fred Meyer's area is not that accessible, nor is it any fun. The administration is awful for the most part. I realized pretty earlier on in the second semester that I really didn't want to continue at LC. So, I went to the registrar's office to ask about how to take a leave of absence, and they treated me really badly. They told me that I was lucky to be going to their fine institution and that if I was unhappy then that was my own fault for not studying at coffee shops downtown, or not wanting to pay $45 buck to take a snow boarding class so I could break my neck on mount hood. They told me to join clubs or do community service, but I just didn't see anything worth while. So I left. Now it's June 13, 2008, and the school just accepted my withdrawal. I've been trying to withdraw since January. I've been e-mail everyone I could think of that could help me complete the withdrawal and one would respond. It was such a nightmare. Then I got an email that said I had re-registered for classes for the fall. I wrote back to the person who had sent the email explaining all the trouble I had been having, and they finally accepted with my withdrawal. It has been really frustrating dealing with the Administration. I guess everyone has school pride but everyone laughs about how the football team hasn't won in decades. There are a lot of unusual things about LC. It's a really strange place. In some ways, it's a good thing and in other ways, this place is just weird. I'll always remember going ESCAPE which is a gay all ages club my friends and I went to once early in the semester. It was the only club we could get into in Portland, but I had a lot of fun. Also we took a road trip to the beach with my roommate's aunt. The coast is beautiful. A lot of students complain about THE BON, which is the dining hall. It is gourmet cooking about sometimes, it's really bad food. But I got used to the bon. At least you have options in there. I think most people just resent that everyone must have a meal plan with the bon for the first two years.
Many times I felt kind of isolated on the L&C campus. I guess it depends on the person, but I found it difficult sometimes to get off of campus. The school is located in a beautiful area, but it's kind of far from anything fun. To get downtown you either have to take a car or take the hourly shuttle or city bus. Most people don't have cars, me included, so the bus was my only option to get around. It's not THAT inconvenient but it was impossible to just run to the store or take a short trip when the minimal time you had to spend out was like 2 hours because of the bus schedule, so often I would decide not to go anywhere because of the inconvenience. The shuttle can get pretty crowded at peak times or right before breaks. I thought it was kind of inconsiderate of the administration to not increase shuttle service at break times at least. It happened every year, same as always. My first year I nearly missed my train home for Thanksgiving because there was no room left on the bus and I was left standing on the sidewalk as the bus drove off. It takes some getting used to as I was accustomed to having my own car to get around back home.
Location,location,location! Though the Lake Shore Campus has the bone-chilling winds of Lake Michigan during Chicago's winter months, living right by the lake is certainly a treat! My favorite buildings on campus overlook the lake: the Madonna Dela Strada chapel and the new Information Commons, a multi-million dollar,"green" study center. Also, the Water Tower Campus is two blocks away from Michigan Ave and the heart of downtown Chicago. You are within walking distance from hundreds of shops and restaurants. Last semester,I spent more time window shopping than in class when I was downtown (don't worry, I've stopped that!).Complementary shuttle service transports students to and from both campuses every 15-30 minutes and the CTA's Red Line and 147 buses provide more frequent services as an alternative to the shuttle. While the Water Tower Campus is located in the most desirable Chicago neighborhood, the same cannot be said about Rogers Park, the location of the Lake Shore Campus. While it is certainly NOT a dilapidated,crime-ridden neighborhood, personal safety should be taken seriously. As in any big city, use caution at night. If you're a female, be sure to walk with someone else or call 8-ride to get a safe ride anywhere close to campus. Basically, use common sense and you should be fine. One disadvantage about Loyola is the lack of a "campus feel". While the majority of students live on-campus,around 30% commute to campus. Also, most on-campus students live in the Chicagoland area, so many students (including myself) go home on some weekends, so this makes the campus feel empty. Luckily, the school does a good job of providing weekend activities, from theme nights to basketball games. While there are numerous food joints within a walking distance from campus (namely McDonalds,Dunkin Doughnuts,Chipotle,Thai Grill), there is no "college town" that would be found in Big Ten universities. Rogers Park itself doesn't provide many food options either. However, you have the city of Chicago at your fingertips. A hop on the red line to Argyle,Fullerton,Belmont and downtown provides a wealth of dining options, as does a trip north to Evanston. Just be careful not to overdo it, this is Chicago and things are expensive!
Ok, the school is smaller than state schools, so it is a bit expected to have your teachers know your name (classes range from 15-100 students, but most are in the 15-30 range). However, this is not always true, because I have a teacher who I have had for two semesters now, in a class of less than 20 students, and he still refuses to recognize my name. Loyola thinks it is very "diverse" and almost pushes the idea of making friends with other races/ethnicities/religions, but I think forcing it is unneccessary and unnatural. I will become friends with whomever I choose. And the school website, based on the pictures they show, paints a very racially diverse school, when in reality it is a majority of white kids. They also have two campuses, which really is more of an inconvenience than an advantage. It would be easier to have a centralized campus, where you could actually get to know students, but instead I am isolated on the downtown campus, which accounts for about 10% of the students at Loyola, and it is a 45 minute El(train) ride to get to the other campus. And of course, a majority of the classes are on the Lake Shore campus, so there is the situation of making sure you have about an hour between classes on separate campuses to allow for travel (the school shuttles are supposed to be every 15 minutes but they rarely come every 25 minutes at the least). I spend most of my time on campus in my room since there is no student union on the downtown campus, and even if you call the "Terry Student Center" a union, it is really just a room with one pool table and 2 TVs, with rarely anyone hanging around. It is hard to call this a "community" because the students do not hang out on campus per-say, they usually roam off into the city, which is understandable since there is not that many college activities to attend (no football team, a HUGE college lack) and if you were to ask someone to attend a basketball game with you, the likely response would be a "what game" or "no thanks, I have things that are more important." There is really no college town, since it is located in Chicago, which is huge. And there is no "quad" persay because they decided to take away what is left of the greenery here in order to build a fancy building that is "green" and can regulate its own temperature. I thought grass was green, but apparenly several tons of steel, glass, and solar panels are too.
Melissa SophomoreReviews provided by: Unigo