- Class: Senior
- Major: Economics
- Gender: F
- High School: Stuyvesant High School
- Transfer Student: N
The best thing about Michigan is definitely the fact that there truly is a Michigan Difference. The emphasis that is placed on organization involvement and activisim, as well as on social justice, at Michigan is unparalleled and I say that with a lot of confidence because I have many friends at other schools. Many people hang out in the Union. There is a ton of school pride - we do have the most popular college gear in the country, if not in the world. At times, Michigan can feel too big and you do feel that it is still a state school right around the time that people register for classes because they fill up - but for me, this has always been the best part - finding my own way and paving my own path. I spend most of my time on campus in the Michigan Union - one of the most beautiful buildings on campus, with vines growing from bottom up. I think I will always associate Michigan with the Union and I have spend most of my time there because of my involvement with Student Government. All of these answers are in no particular order :)
I absolutely know my professors' names. If you come to Professor's office hours and make the effort to get to know them, class becomes that much better. I try to study every day but the least I do it is about 3-4 nights a week. Class participation is very common - both in lecture and in section. I have had some of my best intellectual conversations outside the classroom and have learned a lot. Students are extremely competitive and will always give you a run for your money, no matter the subject or class. There is even a program here that allows you take your professor out to lunch at the expense of the University, precisely so that a big place like this becomes that much smaller, not only socially, but also academically. Intergroup Relations is the most unique class that I have taken. It is a social justice class in dialogue, topic-specific format - where each dialogue is on a given issue - e.g. race & ethnicity, socioeconomic status, etc. Dialogues are student facilitated and in order to be a facilitator, a student has to train for a semester. I am now facilitating with a partner a dialgoue on religion. My other favorite class was Econ 101 because I love the logic behind economics and this is why I decided to be an econ major. The education at Michigan is actually pretty versatile and so I would really be narrowing the focus if I said that it is either toward a job or for learning's sake. There are classes for both.
For me, Michigan has all the right stuff - one just has to go out and get it. It is a place where I have opened my eyes to absolutely everything under the sun - racial, religious, LGBT, socio-economic diversity and it is this that I will always carry with me as the Michigan experience. Different types of students definitely interact, especially through organization involvement - I have made friends that I never thought I would make. Students wear anything to class - but the most common is comfortable clothing - sweatpants and maize & blue sweatshirts! The amazing thing about Michigan is that there really aren't four tables in a dinihg hall and I hope it stays this way. Michigan students come predominant from the Midwest and then from the 2 coasts - east and west. Most kids are well off enough to be here because Ann Arbor (and college) is expensive but this is not the case for everyone at all. There are certainly many people that I know who pay their own way and I have learned a tremendous amount from everyone. Students are incredibly politically active - most are liberal, but pretty much everyone bleeds maize & blue. There is very little talk, at least among my friends, about how much they'll earn one day - many actually want to go into professions in the non-profit sector, especially politics and political activism.
The Best Things
Diversity of experience and organizational involvement..
The Worst Things
It's very decentralized in terms of the administration - but given that, the impact that students are able to have is still unbelievable.