- Class: Sophomore
- Major: Journalism
- Gender: F
- High School: Ridgefield High School
- Transfer Student: N
Syracuse pairs Big East Division I sports and overpowering orange pride with colleges within that provide a small liberal arts feel. ItÕs all about experience here at SU, and the new mission of ÒScholarship in ActionÓ says just that. SU is a hidden gem of the northeast, tucked away in central New York, and has many top-tier programs that compete with the best. Syracuse is commonly known as the best communications school in the northeast, but it also has superior architecture, education, drama, retail management, and entrepreneurship studies. The administration continues to drive SU into the league of Ònew ivyÕs,Ó and is actively working on a $1 billion campaign to continue future progress. There are endless opportunities to get involved, and the administration encourages students to expand upon their curiosities, start new organizations, and thrive in already existing ones. Unfortunately, sometimes freshman feel overwhelmed by the amount of clubs and extracurricular that exists, and there really isnÕt a great way to navigate though them or find out how to get involved initially. Students can be found at every nook and cranny of campus, and most even venture to downtown Syracuse areas for dinner and entertainment. Not all areas of Syracuse are safe for students, and it is advised not for students to ever walk alone at night. ItÕs nice to have a city surrounding the university Òbubble,Ó but the overwhelming amount of poverty on the outskirts of the popular city sites is sad and unsafe. On campus, almost all buildings are open 24/7, and include closed spaces for studying, so students donÕt have to rely on the library as the only place to concentrate. On an average day, I spend about half the time in my room at my sorority house and the other half going to class, attending speakers and finding a quiet and relaxing place to do schoolwork. Students often meet up for lunch on Marshall Street or one of the many cafeterias. Though it is one of the nationÕs more expensive colleges, there are excellent financial aid programs, and scholarships are abundant. Though some colleges receive more educational funds than others, each building has state-of-the art facilities, which allow students to be on the cutting edge of technology and learning. Still, mention the ÔCuse to anyone, and the first response will have something to do with the abominable weather. And that is the worst part about campus. The weather gets to everyone, no matter how positive students try to be. When the wind is nipping off your fingers itÕs hard to put that pencil to the paper. But when it comes to deciding between gray skies or the Syracuse UniversityÕs unique package of sports, intellect, and opportunity, students just weather the storm.
Professors make an effort to know each of their studentsÕ names, and classes are usually small enough so that students can feel comfortable coming to professors with questions about class material. Class participation accounts for a significant portion of every SU class, so it is necessary for professors to know their students in order to accurately access their performance. Class attendance is mandatory, and more than 2 or 3 missed classes will result in at least a letter grade drop. Since classes are mandatory, students get to know and feel comfortable with their peers, and are able to have better class discussions. As far as my classes have gone, about half of my classes have been lecture-based, while the other half have been discussion based. A recent ethics class was almost completely led by intellectual discussions based on readings, and the professor only chimed in to pose a question or to quide the students back on track. IÕm in the Renee Crown Honors Program at SU and would suggest applying to anyone who has the GPA and stamina to do so. Though it adds on a few additional class requirements, the courses offered are incredible. They are challenging, thought provoking and fun. I am taking an honors physics course right now called ÒSeeing Light,Ó and I get to learn about vision, colors and the philosophies of sight where the honors program provides strobe lights, prisms, and other fun optical illusion objects to make learning what I consider a droll subject interactive and fun. I mean, who doesnÕt like to play with rainbows? The honors courses are taught by incredibly enthusiastic and compassionate professors and are composed of about 15 to 20 curious, but not overtly nerdy, students. As a magazine journalism and European history major, I am able to have both a vocational training experience and a general education. The Newhouse school is most certainly a school that is purely for students interested in snagging a career in communications. And if you are not interested in pursuing a career in at least one of the majors offered, stay away. From the get-go, the summer internship becomes the focal point. But a continuous stream of e-mail blasts from the Career Development Center will keep students on their toes and on the lookout for top-notch internship experiences. Newhouse continues to push the bar higher for students each year, and due to competitive acceptance rates, Newhouse students consider themselves campus elite. Students looking towards journalism will also be expected to create multi-media projects, stream video coverage and use the Web. Professors are experts in their fields, have great business contacts and applicable learning methods. Newhouse has been using the same formula for years, so that todayÕs professors are providing the same syllabi for present students. Whatever works! As far as European history goes, the professors are engaging and helpful. The work load is not unbearable, and the library database provides great primary sources. Each professor specializes in a particular time period, and sticks to it. Thus, I have had a couple professors several times already. Some professors are incredibly bias, however, and do not understand why a student does not possess the same passion for a particular time period. The TAÕs are absolutely incredible within the history department. The TAÕs are all graduate students, most of them working towards a PhD. They are well versed in the respective subjects and bend over backwards to make sure the students understand the class material.
Students are predominately financially well off, and hail from at least middle-class families. Every girl is accessorized with designer jewelry (mostly reeking of the latest David Yurman), and comfortable yet fashionable clothing to keep up with the NYC style scene. Politics are important, and students are constantly keeping up on the news, but the campus is fairly center politically. Most students come from New York, Massachusetts, Long Island (yes, it is itÕs own state here), Connecticut or California. New York City is a huge stopping ground for all ÔCuse students, and most flock to NYU dorms in large groups while working for coveted companies as interns. Vogue, Vanity Fair, Time Inc., Cosmopolitan, The New York Times, People and HarperÕs Bazaar are popular media destinations for budding fashionistas. SU students are known to take over and thrive in New York City, and most remain there or in Los Angeles after graduation. Students at SU are reasonably accepting of racial, religious and LGBT groups on campus. Religiously, the campus is varied. About 1/3 of the campus is Jewish, but it seems like more than that. There are religious groups, like Campus Crusaders, for every faith. Hendricks Chapel, located smack in the center of campus and designed like the Pantheon is an interfaith chapel and many students attend services and even dialogue circles there. Students and faculty are cynical in typical northeast fashion, and agnosticism exudes from all corners of campus. Students definitely have their futures in mind at all times, and constantly talk about their goals towards financial success. There is a center on campus just for resumes, and even classes for course credit dedicated to teaching students how to appropriately construct and build a resume. If anything, students will graduate with a great resume.
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